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Imperial County Services Building Before and After 1979 Earthquake

Earthquake of October 15, 1979, Imperial Valley, California. Imperial County Services Building before (left) and after earthquake (right) showing support pillar failure at the east end of building. This 6-story reinforced concrete frame and shear wall structure completed in 1971 at a construction cost of 1.87 million, was designed to be earthquake resistant. However, during the quake the concrete at the base of the support columns was shattered and the vertical reinforced bars were severely bent allowing the east portion of the building to sag about 30 cm. Replacement costs were estimated at 7 million. Photograph Credits: Bay Area Regional Earthquake Preparedness Project (BAREPP) and U.S. Geological Survey.