Articles | Volume 13, issue 3
Research article
20 Mar 2013
Research article |  | 20 Mar 2013

Site investigation of masonry buildings damaged during the 23 October and 9 November 2011 Van Earthquakes in Turkey

F. Piroglu and K. Ozakgul

Abstract. The purpose of this study is to scrutinize and interpret the damages to masonry buildings after a series of earthquakes that occurred in Van, which is an eastern city of Turkey, within 17 days in 2011, i.e., the first earthquake hit on 23 October having the magnitude 7.1, and the second on 9 November with the magnitude 5.6 on the Richter scale. These consecutive earthquakes and their aftershocks caused extensive damage and the collapse of buildings in the city of Van and its villages and especially its near town, namely Ercis. For the investigation of masonry buildings, Hacibekir district, which is one of the regions comprising the highest density of masonry buildings in the city of Van, was selected and the seismic performance of these buildings was observed, tested in the field, and interpreted according to the Turkish earthquake-resistant design codes. In this region, masonry buildings were classified as adobe, unreinforced and confined masonry buildings. As a result of this field study, it was observed that whereas the confined masonry buildings had usually shown good performance during the earthquakes, the adobe and the unreinforced masonry buildings were seriously damaged and some of them were partially collapsed.