While looking at houses in the Bay Area you may be curious if you are near an earthquake fault, as several major faults run through our region. Temblor is an app (and website) that makes finding them easy. The app is especially helpful as you can use location services to find your address without having to type.

Who is Temblor?

Temblor is a catastrophe modeling company specializing in seismic hazard and risk assessment. It was founded in 2014 by former USGS scientists Ross Stein and Volkan Sevilgen, and the company’s mission is to raise awareness of seismic risk.  Their models are built on recent published and independently-tested scientific analyses to provide an independent, unbiased, and transparent assessment of risk.

Why is Fault Proximity important?

While everyone in the Bay Area is in “earthquake country” and it’s important for everyone to install earthquake retrofits on their homes – some homes may be located directly located on the top of a fault. A surface rupture from a large earthquake could literally split a house in two, and normal retrofitting measures would not be sufficient. In some cases, mat slab foundations (basically an extra thick slab foundation) can be used for fortify a home located over a fault, but the cost may be prohibitive.

Website or App?

Ideally, it’s best to avoid homes built directly over faults, and using the Temblor app is a great way to determine fault location while looking at houses. You can download the app from the Google Play or App Store. For more information, check out the website:

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