Earthquake Prone Buildings
New Zealand is a seismically active country and because of that new rules now apply to potential earthquake-prone buildings.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) is responsible for overseeing the changes to the Building Act and relevant regulations.
Territorial authorities (councils) play a key role in managing earthquake-prone buildings.
- Identify potentially earthquake-prone buildings and notify the building owners
- Consider engineering assessments provided by building owners
- Determine if a building is earthquake prone, and if it is, assign an earthquake rating
- Issue EPB notices to owners of earthquake-prone buildings
- Publish information about earthquake-prone buildings on the EPB register
How it impacts on Waimate
Waimate is a low seismic risk area. Council will identify potentially earthquake-prone buildings and give progress reports to MBIE.
Council will work with building owners if their buildings are deemed to be earthquake-prone. If buildings are considered to be earthquake-prone, owners will be required to provide Council with an engineering assessment within 12 months of the notification.
Managing public safety
Identifying and responding to earthquake-prone buildings (and the changes to legislation) is done in the context of public safety. Buildings that have been 'earthquake strengthened' can still collapse as a result of an earthquake, however, the strengthening work is designed to help prevent loss of life.
Building owner responsibility
Council will work with building owners and provide as much assistance as possible. Because our district is considered to be in a low seismic risk area building owners who have earthquake-prone buildings will have up to 35 years to strengthen them.
Need more information?
More information about earthquake-prone buildings can be found on MBIE's website here.