Engineering and Socioeconomic Impacts of
Earthquakes: An Analysis of Electricity Lifeline Disruptions in the New Madrid
edited by M. Shinozuka, A. Rose, and R.T. Eguchi
The largest earthquakes ever to hit the contiguous 48 states were centered
in the New Madrid Seismic Zone near Memphis, Tennessee, in 1811-1812. Reports
of these events were phenomenal. Rivers were rerouted, trees were said to have
popped out of the ground, and the ground shaking itself was felt as far away
as Boston. Yet, total dollar damages associated with the earthquakes were
probably less than $1 million. The reason is that the area was relatively
uninhabited, and the city of Memphis was not founded until several years
How would the situation differ today? An earthquake of a similar or even
lesser magnitude is projected to be able to cause damage in the billions of
dollars. The difference is that the Memphis area is now highly populated and
is the center of a sophisticated and highly interdependent regional economy.
Moreover, it is also a major crossroads for the national economy.
Engineering and Socioeconomic Impacts of Earthquakes: An Analysis of
Electricity Lifeline Disruptions in the New Madrid Area examines the potential effects of a
repeat of the New Madrid earthquake to the metropolitan Memphis area.
The authors developed a case study of the impact of such an event to the
electric power system, and analyzed how this disruption would affect society.
In nine chapters and 189 pages, the book is a first of its kind effort to
develop and apply a multidisciplinary methodology that traces the impacts of
catastrophic earthquakes through a curtailment of utility lifeline services to
its host regional economy and beyond.
- Modeling the Memphis economy
- Seismic performance of electric power systems
- Spatial analysis techniques for linking physical damage to economic
functions Earthquake vulnerability and emergency preparedness among
- Direct economic impacts
- Regional economic impacts
- Socioeconomic and interregional impacts
- Lifeline risk reduction policy formulation and implementation
- Dr. Juan Benavides, University of the Andes, Bogota, Colombia
- Dr. Stephanie E. Chang, University of Washington
- Dr. H. Sam Cole, University of Buffalo
- Mr. James M. Dahlhamer, Disaster Research Center, University of Delaware
- Dr. Kathleen Tierney, Disaster Research Center, University of Delaware
- Mr. Ronald T. Eguchi, Center for Advanced Planning and Research, EQE,
- Ms. Laurie A. Johnson, Center for Advanced Planning and Research, EQE,
- Dr. Steven French, Georgia Institute of Technology;
- Dr. Howard H.M. Hwang, Center for Earthquake Research and Information,
University of Memphis
- Dr. Adam Rose, The Pennsylvania State University
- Dr. Masanobu Shinozuka, University of Southern California
- Mr. Philip Szczesniak, Bureau of Economic Analysis Division, U.S.
Department of Commerce