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The Face of Seismic Retrofitting

Steve Gemmell, Founder of Earthquake Tech

Presented by Earthquake Tech February 10, 2020

Native American lore describes a catastrophic earthquake that struck the Pacific Northwest on January 26, 1700. Japan was also inundated with a tsunami, seemingly out of nowhere. Research shows that devastating events of this magnitude occur roughly every 300 to 500 years in the Cascadia Subduction Zone, the fault line that runs north to south off the coast of Oregon - and scientists think it’s due for another.

Today, the ground trembling may not be a day to day concern for Portlanders, but tensions and awareness around the potential for the next “Big One” are always growing. Steve Gemmell’s company Earthquake Tech offers clients the whole gamut of seismic retrofit services, designed to equip your house with the defenses it needs when the ground starts to shake. That includes foundation anchors, hot water tank strapping, beam and wall reinforcement and gas valve shut off installation, which is especially important considering the probability of structure fi res in the wake of these disasters. Aside from peace of mind, you can expect increased safety for the occupants of your home, raise the likelihood of habitability, boost your home’s resale value and reduce structural damage.

For more than 20 years, Earthquake Tech has been the region’s top authority in the industry. On top of his business, Gemmell is heavily involved in the community, spreading vital information as a part of the Portland Resiliency Plan, while educating businesses and families on how to withstand such upheaval. “Preparedness is like anything. It’s daunting if you don’t take it in small steps,” he says. “Get to know your neighbors. Be good to them because they are the ones that will help you in the recovery.””