Tag Archives: properties

Are buildings in Chennai earthquake resistant?

If you ask the high-rise builders, they’ll say ‘yes’. Most small time builders don’t even know what it means. But the good news is that Chennai is in a Zone II area, which means you can expect earthquakes of only upto 4.9 on the Richter scale. An earthquake of 4.9 may not be as damaging as the Mar 2011 Japan earthquake, but depending on the epicenter, it could damage a lot of properties.

chennai earthquake map
The local paper, The Hindu, carried an article on Chennai and earthquakes and it sounds a little scary. The key take away from the article is

- There’s no certification required for buildings to be earthquake resistant
- There’s no department in the city to certify that a building is earthquake resistant

So, we are left with builders ‘code of ethics’ to make sure that their buildings withstand a reasonable earth quake. With many builders interested in making a quick buck and taking short cuts such as thinnner walls, poor cement to sand ratio, shorter curing span, etc. you wonder which builder really took the effort to make their buildings earthquake resistant.