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Thu 19 Mar 2015 12:26 PM

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Burj Khalifa to install advanced tremor alert system

New buildings in Dubai must be built to withstand earthquakes measuring up to 5.9 on the Richter Scale

Burj Khalifa to install advanced tremor alert system

Two prominent buildings in Dubai have been chosen for the installation of an advanced system that will alert Dubai Municipality officials about tremors and help examine the impact of them.

Sheikh Rashid Tower, the original World Trade Centre building on the Sheikh Zayed Road, and the Burj Khalifa have been chosen by Dubai officials to install the “structural health monitoring systems”.

“The municipality chose two most important buildings to implement the system first,” Dubai Municipality’s Seismology Specialist Prof Kamal Mohammed Atiya told Khaleej Times.

The sensors will provide red-yellow-green alarms for the on-site security team to take appropriate action. An email will also be sent with the building response status to Dubai officials and police, which will give the safety team vital information on deciding how and when to evacuate the building and the subsequent decision on when to reoccupy.

The system will also help avoid unnecessary building evacuation, similar to what happened in 2013 when people spent hours outside buildings due to tremors felt from quakes in Iran.

“Based on how the systems in these two buildings are working, we can upgrade the Seismic Code for upcoming buildings as required,” Prof Atiya said.

The Dubai Municipality has completed the installation of the new system at the Sheikh Rashid Tower and the installation at the Burj Khalifa will be completed by the end of June.

Prof Atiya was speaking after a two-day earthquake emergency response training was held in DWTC for civil officers, government entities, and facility operators.

Mohamed Mashroom, director of the DM’s Survey Department, said any new buildings in Dubai must be built to withstand tremors measuring up to 5.9 on the Richter Scale, just like the Burj Khalifa, which is well above the estimated maximum magnitude of 4.3 tremors that could hit Dubai.

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