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Organization Title

Recovery of Records from Code-Required Accelerographs after the Northridge Earthquake

by A. Shakal, C. Petersen, R. Darragh, M. Huang, R. Nigbor and K. Madura

Shakal, A., C. Petersen, R. Darragh, M. Huang, R. Nigbor and K. Madura (1996). Recovery of Records from Code-Required Accelerographs after the Northridge Earthquake. SMIP96 Seminar on Seismological and Engineering Implications of Recent Strong-Motion Data, p. 53 - 70.

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Abstract

The Northridge earthquake provided the first case since the 1971 San Fernando earthquake of effective recovery, processing, use and analysis of data from accelerographs installed in buildings to meet local code requirements. A large number of records were recovered from these accelerographs in an effort funded by the California Strong Motion Instrumentation Program and the National Science Foundation, with Agbabian Associates coordinating and managing field recovery. The records were valuable to assist post-earthquake structural evaluation and form an important complement to data from regular networks. Significant aspects of the code data recovery, processing and analysis are reviewed. Lessons learned from this experience with code instruments are reviewed to improve the success in future events. Recommendations include increasing the documentation of the location, orientation, and maintenance of code-required instruments, and shifting from film to digital recorders for new installations. Also, a goal of increased adoption of the Uniform Building Code (UBC) instrumentation code requirement by cities and counties is discussed. CSMIP will assist city and county code-instrument programs by providing technical and monitoring expertise.