The year 2022 has been a catastrophic year for India, with the waves of intense weather hitting major parts of the country—both urban and other. Storms, floods, earthquakes and more are ving into the major global issues talked about today. In such conditions, the buildings covering the majority of the cityscape undergo significant effects that may—in the worst-case scenario—make the building collapse to the ground. Such collapses may be due to structural failures or poor load resistance of the materials that circle back to a project’s conception and execution.
Read ahead and find out the root cause behind a building collapse in rough climatic conditions.
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The Age of The Structure
Every structure ages with time. Without proper maintenance, it only ages quickly, making it face structural failures or even collapse at a sooner point in time. The rough climatic conditions only make it worse. The intense wind load from the cyclones may affect the weak structural members while the water leakage through the cracks or other defects in the old buildings can further weaken the roofs and walls during the monsoons. Similarly, intense heat waves also tend to affect the binding strength of the aged materials, which may also be cracked or exposed over time, resulting in building collapses. Although it can be prolonged, the ageing of a building is almost unavoidable.
The On-site Conditions
The site is the foundation of a building, both literally and figuratively. As the site conditions deteriorate, the building tends to step down too—it may be due to a number of factors including the soil conditions, existing landscape cover, nature of neighboring structures and more that have a significant effect on a structure’s life.
In India, the major reason for building collapses due to site condition is improper land acquisition, wherein the legal permissions for construction on the particular piece of land is either restricted or prohibited. Higher number of floors, larger built-up than the local norms and the overall lack of consideration of development control rules in sensitive areas such as wetlands etc. is bound to make a building victim to the rough weather and urban disasters, during a certain part of the year.
Improper Structural Design
A building’s strength and performance relies on its design. With an improper or weak structural design like the ones with a structural overload from a balcony, heavy and weak overhang, uneven load transfer to the columns or a wrong choice of foundation for the site’s context can weaken the structure on the whole, resulting in cases such as building collapses. Important factors such as wind load in high-rise structures, soil compactness in contour project sites etc. get affected by the winds from the monsoon and stagnant water from the floods respectively, making such projects more vulnerable to harsh weather conditions.
In today’s date when the construction process is accelerating, structural issues commonly happen due to negligence of the workforce during tight deadlines or their insufficient training to execute the requirements.
Defective Material Usage
Materials, being the building blocks of a structure, are the key reasons for its success or failure. Materials with poor quality or defects, when used in construction, fail to withstand the adverse climate—low-grade cement losing its binding strength, corroded reinforcement losing its tensile strength and more tend to weaken a structure and make the building collapse in the worst case. This is why strength tests, compression tests and more are included as an essential part of project management through quality management. Given the subject of climate, the seasonal effects of the materials such as their expansion and contraction etc. need to be considered in order to prevent the case of building collapses.
Need for Quality Management
The major reason for the collapse of buildings is the loss of quality during the stage of its construction. This may occur due to any of the below:
- Negligent supervision of the work done
- Poor execution of the construction processes
- Choice of low-quality materials and products
- Lack of essential equipment in quality or quantity
- Inclusion of unskilled workforce in complex processes
- Lack of special training for new processes in the industry, among others.
Due to these issues, the building ends up with poor quality performance, making it susceptible to the potential damages from adverse climatic conditions. With a properly planned and smartly laid out quality management process, a building acquires the qualities that could successfully withstand the changing weather of today. With global warming and climate change threatening the built structures of today, a stringent quality management system becomes almost quintessential for a project. Furthermore, the quality management systems also need smart upgrades such as a digitized model to facilitate the rising demand for construction in the modern world.
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How digiQC Can Help You with Quality Management
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