Many California courthouses pose risk during earthquake, study says

EMBED </>More Videos

Many California courthouses pose a risk during an earthquake, according to a study. (KABC)

Half of California courthouses present a risk during the event of an earthquake, according to study released on Wednesday.

A subcommittee for the Judicial Council of California presented the report which states many courthouses in the state fail to meet earthquake safety standards.

"There are courthouses in every area of the state that are seismically deficient," a member of the Court Facilities Advisory Committee and Courthouse Cost Reduction Subcommittee said. "We need to move not only to build the courthouses that are currently in the pipeline, but we have other courthouses that definitely need to be replaced that haven't even gotten into the queue."

The study said that 24 percent of structures were rated high risk or very high risk, while 26 percent were rated moderate risk. The numbers were alarming because courthouse tend to have heavy foot traffic.

"Even if it's not the big earthquake, they may even have a very poor performance in even a moderate earthquake, which we're likely to have more frequently," said Dr. Saiful Islam, owner of Saiful Bouquet Structural Engineers.

Court leaders are now scrambling to find the more than $1 billion which was re-allocated to other areas during the recession instead of retrofitting projects. Court leaders recommended talking to Sacramento lawmakers for the money to address the issue.

"I think it surprised me, but at the same time I think we need news like this to make moves. So hopefully with this kind of news people will get more conscious and they'll be more supportive on a political level to actually give the funds to fix these kind of courthouses," Islam said.

You can find the complete report here.
Related Topics:
courtearthquakesafetystudyCaliforniaLos AngelesLos Angeles County
(Copyright ©2019 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.)