Friday, February 5, 2016
Earthquakes and block walls
This is from an Oklahoma school. The whole school is crumbling from a succession of small earthquakes, probably at a PGV of 1 cm/s. OK also has serious foundation problems from years of drought. They have the notorious shrinking/swelling clay, and they just construct with slab on grade.
Nevertheless, every school I've ever seen has these block walls. Why don't they construct them like a new Walmart, with a steel frame? The Pickering nuclear station is lousy with them. We called them 'handyman' walls, unengineered because nobody thought it was important. They have a seismic capacity of 5 cm/s if they are undamaged.