Findings on the Earthquake Risk Preparedness of the City of La Paz, Bolivia - BRGM - Bureau de recherches géologiques et minières Access content directly
Conference Papers Year : 2017

Findings on the Earthquake Risk Preparedness of the City of La Paz, Bolivia


Located on the Bolivian altiplano and built on the slopes of the canyon network eroded by the Choqueyapu river and its main tributaries, the city of La Paz is no stranger to natural disasters, having suffered catastrophic floods, hailstorms and landslides in recent memory, such as the hailstorm in 2002 that caused at least 69 deaths and 100 disappearances or the 2011 Pampahasi-Cayapa mega-landslide, which destroyed more than 800 homes. However, despite its location in the South American subduction context and evidence of paleoseismicity in local fault networks, historical and instrumental seismic activity has been relatively low and therefore not a priority in local settlement and construction practices. As part of an ongoing effort by local authorities to increase risk preparedness, a preliminary diagnosis of the earthquake risk preparedness of the city was commissioned by the Municipality of La Paz, with funding from the European Commission DIPECHO programme. This study, whose main findings are presented in this paper, is based on a review and analysis of seismic hazard literature as well as a series of interviews with local actors in the fields of catastrophe management, geological research, seismographic surveillance, land-use planning and structural design. An assessment of the seismogenic potential of local faults and a simple deterministic seismic hazard analysis are first carried out to give an idea of possible hazard. This information is then completed with an analysis of existing vulnerabilities from a legislative and urban planning point of view, as well as commentary on current risk management efforts. Finally, the earthquake hazard is analyzed in the context of a high landslide hazard, analyzing the interactions between risk management strategies for both types of hazards particularly with respect to earthquake-induced landslides.
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Dates and versions

hal-01310993 , version 1 (28-03-2017)


  • HAL Id : hal-01310993 , version 1


Jaime Abad, Olivier Sedan, Didier Bertil, Monique Terrier, Nicolas Desramaut. Findings on the Earthquake Risk Preparedness of the City of La Paz, Bolivia. 16th World Conference on Earthquake Engineering, Jan 2017, Santiago de Chile, Chile. ⟨hal-01310993⟩


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