Who would've thought that Malaysia will have a need for earthquake proof buildings, right?
According to a report by The Star Online, Sabah is set to introduce a new building code which requires all new infrastructures set to be built in the state, especially high-rise buildings, to be earthquake resistant.
State Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Hajiji Noor told the news portal that the building code is necessary as Sabah reportedly has the most active seismic fault lines in Malaysia, ahead of states like Negeri Sembilan, Pahang, Selangor and Sarawak.
Some of the most tremor prone areas in the state include Ranau, Kundasang, Lahad Datu and Kota Kinabalu, where a deadly earthquake on Mount Kinabalu killed 18 people back in June 2015.
The new building code was reportedly drafted after the State Local Government and Housing Ministry officials went to Japan and Taiwan to study their requirements for earthquake resistant infrastructures.
And the code will reportedly be introduced in a couple of months, according to Hajiji.
“This is something that we have been talking about for several years. We will introduce it soon,” he was quoted as saying.
All the new buildings in Sabah will likely be constructed with an earthquake proof technology invented by Malaysia back in the 1970s!
In the late 70s, the Malaysian Rubber Producers Research Association (MRPRA) joined forces with University of California in Berkeley to develop and test seismic rubber bearings as base isolation for structures.
The bearings are made of natural rubber with thin steel reinforcing plates embedded within, making it extremely resistant to environmental degradation.
The rubber bearings would keep buildings from having direct contact with the ground
, therefore any vibrations from the ground will not reach the infrastructure as the bearings would dampen it.
Think of it as the absorbers in your Proton car, absorbing every hit your car takes when you drive over a pothole.
Countries such as Indonesia, China, Iran and Armenia have reportedly use this Malaysian technology on their buildings to earthquake proof them, so yeah, it works.
Image: Astro Awani
Oh, here's another fact you probably didn't know: the second Penang Bridge also uses this technology
Containing more than 2,000 rubber bearings - making it Malaysia's largest structure to be built on rubber bearings, by the way - the Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah bridge could reportedly withstand an earthquake of up to 7.5 in magnitude.