Seismic Issues
The Nisqually Quake
And Masonry chimneys

No modern masonry chimney, reinforced and strapped to the house as required by code, has failed that we know of in recent American Earthquakes.


Of course one could replace a damaged masonry chimney with a metal one, or tear it down and power vent or replace the furnace. But this seminar is about evaluating, rebuilding, repairing, restoring or otherwise saving masonry chimneys.

Masonry chimneys, many of which have served well for 100 years or more, are good looking, safe, require little maintenance and are often architecturally or historically significant. If built or retrofitted in accordance with modern codes, masonry chimneys can and do withstand earthquakes.

Assessing Earthquake Damage

  • Inspection
  • Venting
  • Fire Safety
  • Structural Integrity
Rebuild, Repair, Restore
  • Planning
  • Code and Safety Issues
  • Hiring a Contractor
  • MIW "Masonry Chimney Hot Line"
    866 649 BRICK (2742)
How Chimneys Should be Built
  • The Building Code
  • Residential Masonry Fireplace and Chimney Handbook
  • Pictures of chimneys that did and did not survive the quake
Conclusions and Recommendations
Prepared for FEMA by Jim Buckley

Training Index
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