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The modified Mercalli earthquake intensity scale; revisions arising from recent studies of New Zealand earthquakes



The modified Mercalli earthquake intensity scale; revisions arising from recent studies of New Zealand earthquakes



Bulletin of the New Zealand National Society for Earthquake Engineering 29(2): 92-106



The 1992 New Zealand version of the Modified Mercalli (MM) intensity scale, was the result of a major multi-disciplinary review, and comments were invited. This paper results from considerable use of the 1992 scale in recent studies of twenty two New Zealand earthquakes including two of magnitude M (sub S) 7.8, and insights into the scale gained from studies of the well-documented M (sub W) 6.6 1987 Edgecumbe earthquake. Improvements to the 1992 New Zealand MM intensity scale are offered, including criteria for chimney damage at MM6 to MM8, and also criteria for MM10 to MM12 based on a simple matrix procedure of logical extrapolation from lower intensities, and the use of new construction categories. Discussions of the influence of ground conditions at high intensities, and on definitions of the key terms "partial collapse", "collapse" and "destroyed", are included.

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