This paper explores the post-earthquake building assessment program that was utilized in Christchurch, New Zealand following the Canterbury Sequence of earthquakes beginning with the Magnitude (Mw.) 7.1 Darfield event in September 2010. The aftershocks or triggered events, two of which exceeded Mw 6.0, continued with events in February and June 2011 causing the greatest amount of damage. More than 70,000 building safety assessments were completed following the February event. The timeline and assessment procedures will be discussed including the use of rapid response teams, selection of indicator buildings to monitor damage following aftershocks, risk assessments for demolition of red-tagged buildings, the use of task forces to address management of the heavily damaged downtown area and the process of demolition. Through the post-event safety assessment program that occurred throughout the Canterbury Sequence of earthquakes, many important lessons can be learned that will benefit future response to natural hazards that have potential to damage structures.
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Post-earthquake building safety assessments for the Canterbury Earthquakes