30 June 2017, Yangon

Myanmar has been frequently impacted by all sorts of natural hazards like earthquake, flood, cyclone, landslide, and fire. Although major earthquake is less frequent than other hazards, their impact on buildings and infrastructure of exposed areas can be devastating. Yangon lies along the Sagaing fault, in low to moderate seismic zone. In the last two years, Yangon has been shaken many times due to different earthquakes in the country and it is very important to assess the safety of the built environment there.

UN-Habitat, under the funded program “Myanmar Consortium for Community Resilience” has been working with Myanmar Engineering Society (MES), Myanmar Earthquake Committee (MEC), Myanmar Geoscience Society (MGS), and MCCR partners to work on earthquake safety issue for Yangon City. UN-Habitat conducted the building vulnerability assessment of key urban infrastructures in Yangon in collaboration with MES and MEC. UN-Habitat is now working with MES and AIT team on detailed vulnerability assessment and also to provide retrofitting solution for three identified buildings.

AIT Experts Prof. Pennung Warnitchai, Engr. Thaung Htut Aung, and Dr. Pramin Norachan joined and presented during the workshop in June organized at Myanmar Engineering Society, Yangon.  Prof. Pennung Warnitchai shared his expert views on lessons learned from past earthquakes, use nonlinear structural models to evaluate seismic performance of existing building and design retrofitting strategy, and on earthquake loss estimation. Engr. Aung discussed about the seismic evaluation process and criteria and finite element modeling and analysis procedures for evaluation of existing buildings. Dr. Pramin presented the evaluation of analysis results, retrofit strategies and retrofit design details, and case study for seismic evaluation and retrofit design of existing building. The outline of Guidelines for Seismic Evaluation and Retrofit Design of Existing Buildings in Myanmar was also discussed with UN-Habitat and MES.

Prof. Pennung Warnitchai and Engr. Thaung Htut Aung conducted field visit for Yangon General Hospital (106-year old building), warehouses and fire station arranged by Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement.

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