NIST Time|NIST Home|About NIST|Contact NIST

HomeAll Years:AuthorKeywordTitle2005-2010:AuthorKeywordTitle

Progress Report on Fires Following the Northridge Earthquake.

pdf icon Progress Report on Fires Following the Northridge Earthquake. (830 K)
Evans, D. D.; Walton, W. D.; Mowrer, F. W.

NISTIR 6030; June 1997.

U.S./Japan Government Cooperative Program on Natural Resources (UJNR). Fire Research and Safety. 13th Joint Panel Meeting. Volume 2. March 13-20, 1996, Gaithersburg, MD, Beall, K. A., Editor(s), 273-281 pp, 1997.

Available from:

National Technical Information Service
Order number: PB97-184204


fire safety; fire research; earthquakes; urban fires; wildland fires; windows; glazing materials; fire spread; lifelines; ignition; fire suppression


Fires following earthquakes can add substantially to the community wide destruction initiated by strong earthquakes and the associated after shocks. The loss of life and property caused by fire occurs in a different time frame than the structural and property damage caused directly by the earthquake. While most of the loss caused by shaking occurs during the time of ground movement, there is usually no fire loss during that time. Fire loss directly attributable to the earthquake begins immediately following the earthquake and can continue for days afterward. The destruction potential associated with post-earthquake fires is strongly dependent on the damages to the community lifeline systems and to the weather conditions, especially the wind speed.