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Hillside homes usually have great views. They were built to allow a homeowner to experience the best in living.  However, hillside homes can be very dangerous in an earthquake! 

Hillside homes typically have foundations that step down the hillside in ever-taller pony wall sections. These homes will use the ABC’s of retrofit to secure the home but will need extra considerations by a structural engineer to make sure the retrofit will work for this specialized situation.  Hillside retrofits can be complex and involve more than just attaching the house to its foundation. 

Research on hillside home failures has shown that the stepping shear panels on the sides of the house do not work together as one unit, but rather, take the earthquake load sequentially in seismic shaking. The shortest and stiffest section takes the full force of the earthquake until the section fails, then the load is transferred to the next stiffest panel and on down the stepping foundation until the house collapses. Attention must be given to adjust the pony wall segments to spread the shear load equally along the walls so that the whole length of wall will work together to resist earthquake shaking.

A-FFIX Retrofit relies on knowledgeable engineers who take into consideration the details needed to retrofit Hillside homes.

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