Mitigating disasters through better building designs

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Mitigating disasters through better building designs

Post  Cheslav on Fri Jan 07, 2011 5:44 pm

As large urban centers in our country are vulnerable to natural disasters like earthquakes, cyclones, floods, fires, etc., a comprehensive and more stringent building rules, regulations and byelaws need to be formulated to tackle the issue.  The earthquakes that occurred in Latur in Maharashtra and in Ahmedabad in Gujarat respectively were an eye-opener to the havoc caused by the faulty building designs in those areas. 
When the earthquake struck on republic day in Ahmedabad in Gujarat, some of the high-rise apartment complexes literally sank into the soil.  More than 4 stories just above the ground floor went underground during this devastating earthquake.  Thus the building research organizations have now come forward with plans to revise the building construction methodologies with respect to the construction of high-rise apartment complexes.
Some of the Builders in Kerala now subscribe to the view that prevention is better than cure with respect to the development of high-rise building structures.  They do not want to see a repeat of the incidents in Latur and Ahmedabad.  Not only that, in some parts of Thrissur district, people have reported tremors and landslides that have caused minor damages to houses.
The best earth-quake resistant building construction designs and methodologies are those that have been perfected in Japan, a nation that is prone to landslides and earthquakes almost every year.  In the recent earthquake that struck this country, none of the tall skyscrapers that tower to a height of more than 60 floors ever got damaged.  It is a testimony to the engineering prowess of the Japanese civil engineers.  Many of the builders in Kerala are also now toying with the idea of such improved building designs.  Thus the incorporation of the cutting edge building construction methodologies is likely to add value to the apartments and other villas being put up for sale.


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