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Egbelakin, Wilkinson, Potangaroa, & Ingham (2013). Improving regulatory frameworks for earthquake risk mitigation

Bibliographic details:

Egbelakin, T., Wilkinson, S., Potangaroa, R., & Ingham, J. (2013). Improving regulatory frameworks for earthquake risk mitigation. Building Research & Information, 41(6), 677-689


New Zealand's devastating Canterbury earthquakes provided an opportunity to examine the efficacy of existing regulations and policies relevant to seismic strengthening of vulnerable buildings. The mixed-methods approach adopted, comprising both qualitative and quantitative approaches, revealed that some of the provisions in these regulations pose as constraints to appropriate strengthening of earthquake-prone buildings. Those provisions include the current seismic design philosophy, lack of mandatory disclosure of seismic risks and ineffective timeframes for strengthening vulnerable buildings. Recommendations arising from these research findings and implications for pre-disaster mitigation for future earthquake and Canterbury's post-disaster reconstruction suggest: (1) a reappraisal of the requirements for earthquake engineering design and construction, (2) a review and realignment of all regulatory frameworks relevant to earthquake risk mitigation, and (3) the need to develop a national programme necessary to achieve consistent mitigation efforts across the country. These recommendations are important in order to present a robust framework where New Zealand communities such as Christchurch can gradually recover after a major earthquake disaster, while planning for pre-disaster mitigation against future earthquakes.