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University of Nevada, Reno

Banco Itaú at the “Main Square” of Talca


The second story of this unreinforced masonry structure was added in the 2000s. While no significant damage to ceiling tiles and other equipment was observed at the first story (Figure 1), damage was widespread at the second story (Figure 2). No damage, however, was reported to the electrical cables and utilities, in spite of the complete loss of ceiling tiles (mineral fiber). Six inch diameter steel tube sections (not anchored or embedded) were used to support the roof trusses on the second floor. The roof trusses are planned to be replaced by lightweight metal trusses. The building had no sprinkler system but it did have smoke detectors and hoses. (According to many people that we interviewed and our own observations, fire sprinkler systems are not common in any type of building – not even in hospitals; so far the only structure we witnessed a fire sprinkler system in was the Santiago airport).

No significant damage to ceiling tiles at the first story.

Figure 1: No significant damage to ceiling tiles and other equipment was observed at the first story.

widespread damage to second story at Banco Itauwidespread damage to second story at Banco Itau

Figure 2: Damage was widespread at the second story.


Report and photos submitted by Gokhan Pekcan.
Date: March 8, 2010