City of Calexico
If you live in a mobile home check the foundation to make sure that it has been reinforced and that the undercarriage has been securely tied to the foundation. Without this, the mobile home may be thrown off its foundation even during small tremors. Tie doublewide mobile homes together. The two units are generally of different weights. When an earthquake strikes, they tend to react differently and pull apart. Structural support bracing systems are commercially available. Designs and costs vary, but a good bracing system can be a very worthwhile investment. If interested in a seismic bracing system, contact the mobile home owner's association, local mobile home dealer or look in the telephone book.
American Red Cross
Mobile homes and homes not attached to their foundations are at particular risk during an earthquake.
City of Santa Maria
The City of Santa Maria is considered to be in a Seismic 4 area. Seismic Zones are used in building codes to give guidance on appropriate building design to better survive the motion produced by significant earthquakes. To the public, this means that we have the potential for large earthquakes. It represents the fact that we have multiple active faults near us and that the majority of the City lies in an alluvial basin that is subject to liquefaction (a process where the sand beneath us shifts which allows structures to sink). Contrary to popular belief, a damaging earthquake can be caused by a fault fairly far away. In the past, the City has experienced damage from earthquakes in Tehachapi, Kern County, faults off of the coast, and the San Andreas, as well as local faults. Mobile Homes are particularly at risk as many of them are not bolted to foundations, nor are the walls of sufficient strength to retain items such as water heaters from breaking their mounts. Water, sewer, power, and gas lines can be severed if the home moves significantly away from the service. Mobile homes can be significantly strengthened by having approved earthquake bracing systems installed.
Forty five states and territories throughout the United States are located in zones of moderate to high risk for earthquakes. Old Buildings, Mobile homes and homes not attached to their foundations are at particular risk during an earthquake; buildings with foundations resting on landfill and other unstable soils are at increased risk of damage.
When purchasing and installing a new Manufactured Home, there are two upgrades that are recommended. They are installing a Vapor Barrier and Earthquake Bracing.
Mobile Home Earthquake Bracing
Earthquake bracing is recommended in California, and elsewhere earthquakes are common. Mobile Homes and Manufactured Homes are especially susceptible to damage in a earthquake due to their foundation system (most of the time they are installed on a pier-and-post system).
Earthquake bracing is a simple upgrade that can increase the value of your home by at least the cost of installation of the bracing. This cost is running from $2000 to $4500 in California right now. The actual brace is like a shock absorber in a car, but installed at an angle from the steel I-beam on the bottom of the home, and anchored to the ground. This brace will keep the home from shifting off the pier-and-post foundation.
Insurance companies may insist on having earthquake bracing installed if you want to purchase earthquake insurance on your Mobile Home or Manufactured Home.
Earthquake bracing can also help a Mobile Home not come off the foundation in high winds, although it is not designed to do this and should not be relied on for this.
"Earthquake experts see the 'Big One' getting bigger" Californians....Don't Take This One Lightly.
The following link is from a FOX NEWS piece that broke this morning:
Californians need to take this link very seriously. Having been a "DISASTER RESPONSE SPECIALIST" for the past 20+ years and having direct hands-on experience in California Earthquakes since 1986 I can assure you that you can never be too prepared. Hardest hit are MOBILE & MANUFACTURED HOMES. Like Tornado's, floods and Hurricanes Earthquakes seem to a find thousands of Mobile and Manufactured Home Communities to destroy. The biggest tragedy, however, are the thousands of residents in these homes becoming instantaneously displaced; Their whole lives abruptly on hold and perhaps changed forever.Many if not most of these poor souls are senior citizens and/or low income. They're the least capable of being able to take care of themselves and usually end up on the public doles costing taxpayers, first responders, the Red Cross, insurance companies and myriad special service organizations billions of dollars.
The 1994 Northridge Earthquake alone cost the insurance industry over 40 Billion dollars and was the costliest disaster on record until Hurricane Charley and his buddies visited the Florida Coast in 2004 and Katrina hit New Orleans in2005.
The good news, if there is ever any good news to come from disasters, is that unlike tornadoes, hurricanes and floods earthquakes don't blow or wash things away. You won't find aluminum roofs, awnings and carports lodged in trees a hundred feet in the air. Earthquakes just cause things to collapse and many times explode and burn. But it doesn't have to be that way with mobile or manufactured homes. They actually are one of the safest places to be in an earthquake if proper precautions are taken.
By taking this one very inexpensive measure (comparatively speaking) chances are you will never be one of those unfortunate souls sleeping on government issued military cots in your driveway while keeping warm by burning debris and rubble from the ruins of your neighborhood in a 55 gallon steel drum. It's no joke I've seen it many times.
Do you realize that if your home is "RED TAGGED" you will not be allowed back in it until it has been signed off by an official building inspector? In many cases you will not even be allowed to enter and gather personal effects because it is considered too dangerous.
This means if you have an open roof or broken windows that allows the outside environment to enter your home your losses will be exacerbated tremendously. You may even suffer a total loss of your home and all its content due to mold and moisture related issues.
By installing an ERBS or EFS you not only protect yourself and your possessions and do not have to end up living in your driveway or your car you don't become an indigent depending on hand outs from the government and your neighbors. You may lose the use of your utilities but you can always purchase a generator. Believe me it's a free for all out there if you're not prepared and you could be days, even weeks from getting any help at all.
Installing an ERBS or EFS is the most inexpensive insurance you can purchase and just may prevent you from losing your home, possessions and maybe even your life or that of a loved one. There are many State certified systems available to choose from starting from as little as $1800 on a doublewide. Many reputable contractors even offer terms and you may live in a city or county that have special low or even no interest loan programs that will finance them or even grants that will award them to those who qualify.Being prepared is your responsibility to your family, neighbors community, first responders and disaster response teams. Why should they have to take care of you when you could have taken measures to take care of yourself.