ANIDIS - L'ingegneria Sismica in Italia, ANIDIS XIX & ASSISi XVII - 2022

Dimensione del carattere:  Piccola  Media  Grande

Securing the church of Madonna del Sole during the emergency phase of 2016 earthquake: interoperability of different actors as an instrument for reducing seismic risk of damaged built heritage

Enrica Brusa, Claudio Chesi, Stefano Della Torre

Ultima modifica: 2022-08-27


Potential damage from seismic risk is particularly high for historic buildings, as it can produce an irreversible loss of value and sense, not only concerning the material meaning but also the intangible one. Undoubtedly, the best strategy to reduce seismic risk of the built heritage consists in assessing and reducing vulnerability. In any case, it is not always possible to early intervene on historic buildings to improve seismic performance, neither it is possible to change or to completely remove some external factors (i.e., the hazard exposure due to local geotechnical features), nor to avoid that aftershocks increase the damage produced by the first event.

On the contrary, it is possible to reduce the level of seismic risk for buildings also resorting to the coping capacity of a society, improving the effective reaction that authorities can oppose to a hazardous event, such as an earthquake, already during the emergency phase. This applies also to the protection of damaged cultural heritage and particularly to churches, which constitute one of the most vulnerable typologies of historic buildings, due mainly to their shape and constructive characteristics.

In Italy, recent seismic events have clearly shown that during the emergency phase which immediately follows an earthquake it is still possible to intervene on historic buildings, in order to limit the progress of damage.  As known, during a seismic emergency the protection of Cultural Heritage is in charge to different public Agencies: not only the Ministry of Culture, but also the National Fire Brigade and the Civil Protection Agency, that are responsible for emergency activities. For this reason, the cooperation among them plays an essential role, as well as does the knowledge both of the buildings and of their vulnerability, or the technical ability to properly intervene in order to stop the progress of damage.

This paper shows, through the analysis of a case study, how interoperability can be effectively developed among the different actors involved in the protection of cultural heritage during the post-earthquake emergency phase. The study refers to the case of the church of "Madonna del Sole" in Capodacqua (AP), a hamlet in the heart of the Sibillini Mountains, on the border between the Marche, Umbria and Lazio regions. The church, being very close to the epicentre of the earthquake occurred on August 24th, 2016, was severely damaged. Few days later, the National Fire Brigade together with the officers of the Ministry of Culture installed seismic protection devices which, providing a minimum resistance level, avoided collapse as the second main earthquake occurred at the end of October. This case study well demonstrates the importance of a prompt reaction to reduce negative consequences on the built heritage; at the same time, it shows the benefit of achieving a good interoperability of all the actors involved in the protection of cultural heritage during the emergency phase, as they can significatively increase the residual safety of damaged historic buildings.

Keywords: cultural heritage, seismic damage, interoperability, emergency phase.

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