03 Jan Seismic retrofitting: Metallurgica San Marco invests in safety ahead of time
Safeguarding and securing people, protecting production facilities. These are the two reasons, in order of importance, that prompted Metallurgica San Marco to start works on the seismic retrofitting of the company buildings. An investment of almost 800.000 euros, entrusted to the Studio Gruppo Associato Paterlini, which will last three years considering the size of the area in question, which occupies a surface area of over 30.000 square meters.
“The terrible earthquake of Emilia in 2012 – explains Mr. Marco Paterlini – has not only destroyed historical buildings and homes, but has brought the Emilian production system to its knees. Dozens of industrial buildings collapsed, dozens people lost their lives, and many activities had to be closed due to unusable warehouses and buildings. 2012 can be considered year zero in the regulatory terms of the Italian industrial sector, because for the very first time an earthquake hit production activities in such a devastating way”.
At the time, in fact, the construction regulations of industrial buildings did not require an earthquake-proof adjustment, so the elements that made up the prefabs – pillars, beams, tiles and infill panels – were fixed without mechanical connections or simply placed one on the other. The structures were therefore able to support their own weight, and additional activity elements, such as bridge cranes, for example, but were designed only to withstand vertical loads. On the contrary, nothing had been done to resist the stress caused by horizontal forces such as the wind or the earthquake.
“Adjusting buildings to earthquake regulations is not mandatory for companies – continues the engineer – but it represents a conscious choice to safeguard first of all employees and then production activities.” Metallurgica San Marco is an enlightened company in this sense: despite the area in which it is placed being at medium risk, the company has looked beyond and has started a work that will last years and that will require an important economic investment “.
The first phase of the works in Metallurgica San Marco, which ended in 2018, was the study and analysis of the buildings to verify which operations were necessary for their seismic improvement, thus avoiding a collapse in case of earthquake. In 2019 the works will begin in Building no. 6, dedicated to the Finishing Department, put in priority by the company, because it is the one with the biggest staff presence.
The works carried out and fully certified will improve the buildings of the company by raising two classes with respect to seismic risk and this will allow Metallurgica San Marco to take advantage of the Sismabonus, introduced in the Italian Budget Law of 2017, which allows to recover up to 153.000 euro, therefore about 19% compared to the important investment that the company is making for the safety of its workers and its business.