Tag Archives: code

Seismic Retrofitting of Masonry Buildings: Why It’s Needed

Shortly before 1 p.m. on Feb. 22, 2011, Christchurch, New Zealand, started to shake. Ten seconds are all it took to change the landscape and the lives of residents: 185 dead, several thousand injured, and 45 percent of buildings deemed unsafe to enter. While many of the deaths in the earthquake occurred in a small number of building collapses, unreinforced masonry (URM) construction suffered widespread damage. However, while the Royal Commission Report identified that 97 percent of the unstrengthened URM buildings in the Central Business District were either seriously damaged or collapsed, only 20 percent of buildings that had been retrofit to a high level experienced serious damage.…

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Open for Public Comment: Direct Design Masonry Handbook Revision

13 August 2017 — The Masonry Society’s Design Practices Committee has incorporated numerous revisions to the Direct Design Handbook for Masonry Structures (TMS 403) from its previous version published in 2013. As part of the review and approval process, TMS 403 is provided for public review and comment. View the Direct Design Handbook Draft (Revised…

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Free Webinar Will Look at Seismic Design of Masonry

July 28, 2017 — The National Institute of Building Sciences Building Seismic Safety Council (BSSC) will host the sixth webinar in its 2017 series sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The series is intended to highlight the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) 2015 NEHRP Recommended Seismic Provisions for Buildings and Other Structures,…

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Fall 2009: Minimizing Masonry Litigation

The International Residential Code (IRC) for one- and two-family residences, and the International Building Code (IBC) for most other construction, usually is the adopted and applicable law governing design and construction. But it is essential to verify what code applies by obtaining a copy of the state law or local ordinance that applies to the specific construction, and that may contain amendments to the adopted code.…

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Minimizing Masonry Litigation: Part 8: Barriers and Flashing

The International Residential Code (IRC) for one- and two-family residences, and the International Building Code (IBC) for most other construction, usually is the adopted and applicable law governing design and construction. But it is essential to verify what code applies by obtaining a copy of the state law or local ordinance that applies to the specific construction, and that may contain amendments to the adopted code.…

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NovDec 2008: Minimizing Masonry Litigation – Part 6: Fences and Walls

Masonry often can be the best choice for fences, freestanding walls, or for walls that retain earth. But if not designed and constructed correctly, masonry (or other) fences and walls can crack, fail, injure or kill, and cause lawsuits. The author’s cases demonstrate repeatedly that all of this bad news would not have occurred if there had been compliance with the building code.…

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