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California Seismic Risk – Real Estate Assets & Earthquakes!

When people think of earthquakes, probably the first thing that comes to mind is “California!” Therefore, the threats and risks associated with earthquakes have been a longtime hazard to Californian’s yet, the risk is growing to neighboring states, such as Washington and Oregon. In fact, California alone holds two-thirds of the Nation’s entire earthquake risk. Earthquakes are such a common occurrence in California they happen daily and more go unnoticed however, the next big one is always on California’s radar.

A Few California Earthquake Risk Statistics

  • 15,700 Known faults in CA
  • 500+ Active faults in CA
  • >99% Chance of 1 or more M6.7 or greater earthquake to strike CA
  • Most Californians live within 30miles of an active fault

Again, California experiences earthquakes on a daily basis yet, most are small in magnitude and do not cause much damage. Here is a list notable and major CA earthquakes throughout CA history,

If you are interested in learning more about your specific area and the risks of earthquakes near you, select your CA county here,

Real Estate Assets & Earthquake Risks

Buildings vary from type of building to structural standards that are constantly being updated to adhere to life and building safety guidelines. Seismic retrofitting a building remains one of the best ways to strengthen the structural integrity of a property. The benefits are infinite with life-safety and mitigating liability providing a major peace of mind. When considering a seismic retrofit for your real estate assets below are a list of risk factors to consider.

Building Seismic Risk Factors

  • Age of building
  • Quality of construction
  • Noticeable damage or excessive cracks or even unnoticeable damage
  • Extreme wall openings
  • Non-structural or unusual building elements
  • Distance between structures
  • Inadequate lateral support (crawl space/ pony walls/ tuck-under parking)
  • Large openings in floor or roof diaphragms (skylights/ light wells/ clerestory)


Contact Saunders Construction if you have commercial real estate assets in California and like to learn more about commercial seismic retrofits or structural strengthening. Saunders Construction now services five states, California, Washington, Oregon, Nevada and Utah. We also offer budgets for seismic retrofits,

Posted Under: Seismic Retrofits