Timely repairs may prevent further damage and maintain the structural integrity of the building. Repairs improperly made mask the problem but can complicate fixing it right later. Brick and mortar repairs may require re-aligning the wall and reinforcing the area with special hidden stainless steel ties or carbon fiber straps while maintaining the beauty of your home.
When the earth shakes, houses break. Even without major seismic events houses can experience damage to brick and mortar, chimneys and foundation cracking, shifting, settling or leaning. All of these can usually be repaired.
Chimneys can be an architectural feature worth saving but as a relic of a bygone era, they can also be removed, reinforced or braced. Chimneys can even be replaced with more resilient material. Let’s avoid inviting a ton of bricks crashing into your living space during the next quake.
Foundation work, such as lifting or shoring is coordinated through our expert partner sub-contractors to start with a firm base prior to other repairs when needed.
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“Masonry is the most used material in the historical buildings of the European architectural heritage. The mechanical properties of these structures are often low, due to both the texture of the masonry and the poor quality of the mortar.”Elena Ferretti and Giovanni PascaleSome of the Latest Active Strengthening Techniques for Masonry Buildings: A Critical Analysis
“Uniform Building Code (UBC): In 1927, the first edition of the UBC contained seismic provisions in its appendix for new construction, but it was not widely adopted. In the middle part of the 20th century, cities typically maintained unique seismic design requirements in local ordinances that were loosely similar to parts of the UBC and local variations in practice resulted in many inconsistencies. By the late 1970’s, most local governments were adopting various editions of the UBC with local amendments, but consistency in adoption dates and editions didn’t emerge until the 1980’s.”Fred TurnerRevisiting Earthquake Lessons - Unreinforced Masonry Buildings
“There’s a roughly 50% chance that a magnitude 6 or larger earthquake will shake the Wasatch Front in the next half century. And many older structures would not withstand it.
In order to prevent that from happening, contractors can tie the roof to the walls and strap down the chimney to prevent it from tipping, among other strategies. But that can be expensive, running homeowners $15,000 to $20,000.”Bob CareyThe Utah Division of Emergency Management's earthquake program manager
“Unreinforced masonry (URMs) buildings and homes create the greatest risk for the Salt Lake Valley in the expected Utah earthquake. Salt Lake City’s Fix the Bricks facilitates seismic improvements for its residents URMs in an effort to save lives by reducing the number of deaths, injured and trapped after an earthquake. Preparedness starts at home. Act now!”Salt Lake Fix the Brickshttps://www.slc.gov/em/fix-the-bricks/
“There are no guarantees of safety during earthquakes, but properly constructed and strengthened homes are far less likely to collapse or be damaged during earthquakes.”Homeowner’s Guide to Earthquake SafetyPublished by the California Seismic Safety Commission 2020 edition
“Whatever the earthquake danger may be, it is a thing to be dealt with on the ground by skillful engineering, not avoided by flight…”G. K. Gilbert, USGS ca. 1906
“scenario modeling of a major (magnitude [M] 7.0) earthquake on the Salt Lake City segment of the Wasatch fault zone predicts 2,000 to 2,500 fatalities, 7,400 to 9,300 life-threatening injuries, 55,400 buildings completely damaged, 21 million tons of debris, and $33.2 billion in estimated short-term, direct economic losses”M. Leon Berrett, P.E.