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On the 28th of August 2016, the building construction (washrooms with tin roof) project at Shree Kapileshowr Lower Secondary School, Jhagajholi, Ratmata-9, Dhungechour, Sindhuli was accomplished. Nepal-Hilfe had funded to built 2 washrooms with tin roof on the 11th of May, 2016. Sindhuli was one of most devastated areas d ue to the earthquake of 25th April 2015, followed by several aftershocks.
School family including teachers, students and parents expressed their gratitude to Nepal-Hilfe for their kind support. Nepal-Hilfe had donated NPR 60,000/- to completed indeed necessity (toilet) of school to accommodate its 150 students. From now, the students do not need to wonder for sanitation as they did in previous days.
On the 11th of May 2016, Nepal-Hilfe team agreed to build 2 washrooms with tin roof at Shree Kapileshowr Lower Secondary School, Jhagajholi, Ratmata-9, Dhungechour, Sindhuli. Jagajholi was one of the most devastated areas due to the earthquake of 25th April 2015, followed by several after shucks. Our team visited and found that the school indeed required a well-build washroom to accommodate its 150 students.
After 85km drive from Bhaktapur, we meet the school principal Mr. Mohan Lal
Chaulagai, who was already on the wayto receive us. We had lunch together and walked on the country side for one and half hour up to the school. The structural condition of the school was substantial damaged. The government had introduced a system for accessing the harm the earthquake had done to any infrastructure by giving them stickers. The building had got 2 red stickers and one green meaning that the 2 buildings were not be used. Out of three building 1 had collapsed and one red sticker building was still functions as a classroom despite the danger of collapsing.
There were 8 members waiting for us at the school office including 5 school teachers, a mason, a parent and the chair person of school management committee. They had prepared an estimation cost for one permanent toilet with cemented roof. The overall
estimate cost to complete building adding with transportation was higher than estimated. The estimated cost of school was Rs 125700/- . Lacking enough budgets to follow the given estimation, at the end of the discussed CDN team changed their cost plan and agreed upon to build 2 cemented washrooms with tin roof separated for both male and female.
There were two Temporary Learning Classes with three rooms where 6 classes were
running simultaneously. It was evident that more classrooms were needed. Since the school had already had an agreement with government to construct permanent five room building, we supposed that building a proper washroom could be a huge support for the school.
From February 19 to 22, 2016, Nepalhilfe der VHS Bhaktapur (represented by Inge Patsch) attended an international conference titled “Living Under Threat of Earthquake” in Hotel Annapurna, Kathmandu, Nepal, hosted by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung). The speakers came from different countries, including Nepal, India, Pakistan, USA, Mexico, Italy, Germany, Bangladesh, Turkey, Malaysia, China, Switzerland, Canada, and Austria.
The theme of the conference is “Short- and Long-Term Management of Earthquake Risk and Damage Prevention in Nepal”, and the lectures are categorized into four broad topics: (1) Plate Tectonics and Earthquake, (2) Damage, Prevention, Restoration, (3) Disaster Management and Economics, and (4) Living With Natural Hazards. Through this holistic approach, the conference aims to illustrate future ways of perceiving risk, preventing damage, and conducting disaster management throughout Nepal.
There are three main ideas from the conference that are of most interest to us here in Nepalhilfe. The first idea is that the Kathmandu Valley does not directly lie on any fault lines. The valley is surrounded by two thrusts that are encircling the valley. This implies that since the valley is not located above a main thrust, the valley will not suffer from a direct impact, but the surface is still vulnerable to shaking.
The second idea is that despite the best efforts of experts and professionals to determine earthquake-resistant building designs, the only certain way to know if a building design is earthquake-resistant is if it has undergone testing with “earthquake shaking tables”. An earthquake shaking table is a device used for testing building components or structural models through a variety of simulated ground motions.
Lastly, the third idea is that the one-storey house model that Nepalhilfe is promoting for its beneficiaries is definitely safer than any multiple-storey design. This is because it is simpler to account for structural supports if there is only one storey, and there is no need to account for how much weight upper storeys would have to bear. This was the case with the May 10 collapse of the Honda Showroom building in Sallaghari, Bhaktapur. Despite appearing like a new modern building, the building collapsed while the old buildings surrounding it remained intact. This was attributed to the presence of gym weights on an upper level of the building, which caused it to be unstable.
Although there are no perfect building models, some are more effective than others depending on circumstances. The conference gave us a lot of things to think about with regards to our reconstruction projects, and we will definitely spend some time to review our plans again and to see if we can include some of the new ideas we gained from this conference.
One of the speakers at the conference, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Uwe Dorka (Head of the Steel and Composite Structures Department of the University of Kassel, Kassel, Germany) has a lot of information about different building control concepts for earthquake protection and about the need for structural models to undergo rigorous testing with earthquake shaking tables before they can be considered as earthquake-resistant. For those who are interested in learning more about these topics, they can read some of his works in the following links:
Hyde-Systems in Residential Buildings (Abstract): http://www.seru.metu.edu.tr/Istanbul/Abstracts/dorka.pdf
Continuous Geographically Distributed Testing Using Shaking Tables: http://risedr.tongji.edu.cn/5th_Kwang-Hua_Forum/downfile/2A/Uwe%20E.%20Dorka.pdf
You can also find his contact info in this link: https://www.uni-kassel.de/fb14bau/en/institute/iki/steel-and-composite-structures/staff.html
On February 14, 2016, Nepalhilfe, our technical partner Management Training Environment and Engineering Consultancy (MTEEC), and the representatives of the house owners from Jhaukhel (Kanchi Dahal and Krishna Prasad Dahal) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) detailing the expectations and responsibilities of all three parties.
Afterwards, Nepalhilfe and our technical team went to Sudal to inspect the properties of Chetan Nath Dulal and Badri Phuyal.
Our technical team estimates that there are enough stones left over from the rubble to rebuild the foundations, but the other materials such as steel and bricks must be bought anew. Since there are still some legal complications with the matter of obtaining documents from the Sudal house owners, we are planning to build their houses in the second phase, after the Jhaukhel houses are finished.