Earthquake-prone buildings process
The law requires all councils to assess public buildings and some large residential buildings (such as apartments) for earthquake resistance.
Those buildings that will not withstand a moderate earthquake (built to less than one third of current design strength) are considered to be earthquake-prone.
Hawke’s Bay is well known for its regular earthquakes so Hastings District Council is giving priority to earthquake-resistance assessments of all buildings to which the public have access, and residential buildings of two or more floors and with three or more household units, as set out in the following policy.
To reduce the burden on building owners, the Council is paying Strata Group Consulting Engineers Ltd to carry out these initial evaluations.
Damage to buildings
The assessment will involve mainly visual, non-invasive inspections, as the Council intends to avoid invasive testing wherever possible. However on some buildings there may need to be some invasive testing such as core drilling of columns.
Repairs after testing
Building owners will be responsible for the repair of any damage incurred during any invasive testing needed.
A copy of the assessment report will be provided to all building owners, who can accept its findings or have it reviewed by their own earthquake engineering specialist.
Acting on the reports
- If your building has been assessed as not earthquake-prone, there is no need to do anything.
- If your building has been identified as earthquake-prone, you need to upgrade your building to a minimum of one third of current design strength.
The owner of a building must pay all costs associated with its upgrading. Building consents will be required. The Council will discuss with you the work needed and an acceptable length of time to have it done.
There is no requirement in current legislation to strengthen earthquake-susceptible buildings above the minimum level of one third of current design strength.
However, the Council advises building owners to consider strengthening to higher levels, to avoid the need for more work if minimum-strength standards are raised.
Potentially earthquake-prone buildings
These buildings have been identified as having the potential to be earthquake-prone based on a range of criteria, but have not been confirmed as earthquake-prone or not.
This means that they are in need of further assessment (including an internal inspection) to determine their exact status.
All of the building owners have been advised of their inclusion on this list and Council will continue to work with property owners to determine the status of their building.
Where a building is shown to meet or exceed the required building standards it will be removed from this list.
Where a building is confirmed as not meeting the required building standards it will be added to the Earthquake-prone Buildings Register.
- Earthquake-prone Buildings Register (PDF 70kB)
If you have any further questions, please contact Michael Skelton on firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 06 871 5000