ABAG Residential Quake Safety Quiz

Should I be concerned about my mobile home being so badly damaged in a future earthquake that I will be unable to sleep in it or that I will be injured? TAKE THIS QUIZ!

When you look underneath your mobile home, which best describes what you see?

What intensity (color) does the shaking intensity map show for your neighborhood?

Shaking = VIII, IX, or X (Red, dark red, or black) (most of Bay Area) = 7 points

Shaking = VII (Yellow) = 5 points You can use the link above to view intensity maps for your area. After viewing, close the map window to return here. Most of the Bay Area is likely to experience shaking of VIII, IX or X in at least one major earthquake.
Shaking = V or VI (Green or blue) = 3 points


If your home earned 8 or more points, you need to confirm that your gas line is "flexible" so that it cannot break and cause your unit to catch on fire. In addition, if your home earned 13 or more points, it probably needs to be made stronger to keep you and your family safer. Engineered Tie Down Systems (ETS), Earthquake Resistant Bracing Systems (ERBS), and permanent concrete foundations are a good idea.

ADVICE from the City of Palo Alto:

"Structural support bracing systems are commercially available. Designs and costs vary, but a good bracing system can be a very worthwhile investment. In September, 1985, regulations became effective requiring the Department of Housing and Community Development to certify earthquake resistant bracing systems for mobile homes. The sale or installation of systems not certified by the Department is unlawful. All certified bracing systems are required to bear a label indicating the manufacturer's name, the product name, the model number, and a statement that indicates 'this system complies with the California Administrative Code, Title 25, Chapter 2, Article 7.5.' If you are interested in a seismic bracing system, contact your mobile home owner's association or local mobile home dealer, or look in the Yellow Pages." (Source - City of Palo Alto)
ADVICE from the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD):
Go to the Department of Housing and Community Development website. Click on "Contact Us" and then scroll down to "Codes and Standards Field Offices." Northern and Southern Area Office addresses and phone numbers are provided. At either office, the public can request copies, preferably by mail, of the latest State-approved Earthquake Resistant Bracing System manufacturers for mobile homes and manufactured homes in California. There is no charge.
HCD found that the main cause of fires with mobile homes during the 1994 Northridge earthquake was water heaters in older units that shook out of their closets, broke the gas line, and ignited the gas. HCD recommends that mobile home owners, particularly owners of units built prior to June 1976, check to see how loose their water heater is physically. A loose water heater should be securely strapped in place to prevent it shaking out during an earthquake. Even with the best foundation, a water heater can be shaken from its closet if it is not securely strapped in place. For more information, go to the ABAG page on Ways to Reduce Damage to your home's contents.

Scientists predict that a large quake in the Bay Area is about twice as likely to happen as not to happen during the next 30 years. Are you betting your home's value and your safety on those odds?

ABAG, the Association of Bay Area Governments, is the regional planning and services agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area.

This page was last updated 5/11/04 by jbp.