There Might Be A Big Earthquake Within the Next Thirty Years!

As we all know, California is vulnerable to earthquakes. San Francisco has seen its fair share of earthquakes and earthquake-related damage. The earthquake of 1906 is widely known, and many people remember the 1989 earthquake. Unfortunately, there is another big earthquake that is due to hit San Francisco.

Experts have calculated that within the next three decades, there is a 76% chance of the San Francisco Bay Area experiencing a 7.2 magnitude earthquake. If this earthquake does happen, it will come randomly and surprise everyone.

Of course, strong earthquakes are generally very dangerous because they destroy the structural integrity of buildings and sometimes result in people getting crushed. This problem is made worse in the San Francisco Bay Area due to the fact that much of San Francisco is built on top of landfill. When settlers settled there, they filled some of the bay with landfill and settled on it. The fact that much of the city sits on top of landfill is a problem because that means that the structural integrity of the land is very weak. The land will lose all structural integrity and liquefy in the event of a major earthquake.

This means that homes and buildings will be more vulnerable to collapse and/or being rendered unsuitable to live in. During the 1989 earthquake, there were top-heavy homes with cavernous garages that buckled with the tremors. As a result of the buckling, the bottom floors of these homes collapsed. These homes and buildings are supposed to begin retrofits, but hundreds of the homes and buildings that were supposed to be retrofitted have not yet begun construction. It's pretty shocking, considering the fact that many buildings are yet to be retrofitted, despite the fact that almost 30 years have passed since the last big earthquake.

There is a chart showing a simple map of San Francisco, entitled “San Francisco Earthquake Risk By Neighborhood.” The chart outlines different neighborhoods in San Francisco, and gives the percentages of homes in each neighborhood that would be rendered “unusable” following a 7.2 earthquake.

Here are the percentages:

  • Marina: 50%
  • North Beach: 27.69%
  • Downtown: 27.78%
  • Western Addition: 26.83%
  • Richmond: 34.81%
  • Pacific Heights: 25.26%
  • Sunset: 22.63%
  • Twin Peaks: 17.06%
  • Mission: 25%
  • Central Waterfront: 28.72%
  • Sunset: 22/63%
  • Excelsior: 12.08%
  • Ingleside: 12.08%
  • Merced: 24.39%
  • Bayview: 16.67%

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