Detailed Seismic Assessment (for non-EPB use only)

The Seismic Assessment of Existing Buildings (the Guidelines) provides a technical basis for engineers to assess existing buildings within New Zealand. The Guidelines on this page include a technical proposal to revise the Engineering Assessment Guidelines used to assess potentially earthquake-prone buildings.

Part A of the Guidelines outlines the scope and application, and provides a general overview of the seismic assessment process. It describes the linkage with the relevant requirements of the Building Act 2004, associated regulations and the EPB methodology. It also provides a brief overview and outline of the key principles of reducing the seismic risk of buildings – designing seismic ‘improvement’.

Part C of the Guidelines sets out the Detailed Seismic Assessment (DSA) process. This is a more comprehensive assessment than the Initial Seismic Assessment (ISA) process set out in Part B. The DSA assesses the structural load paths within the building, the capacity of each structural element, the likely inelastic mechanisms, the global building response to earthquake shaking and the impact of secondary structural and critical non-structural building elements.

The DSA process is based on the Part A principles, which are an integral part of the seismic assessment process. Sections C1, C2, C3 and C4 provide an overview of the DSA process, the assessment procedures and analysis techniques, the earthquake demands and geotechnical considerations.

Sections C5 to C9 of the DSA process provide recommendations for specific materials. Section C10 provides recommendations for secondary structural and non-structural elements. Each of these sections build on the common aspects within Sections C1 to C4 and Part A.

An Assessment Summary Report Template is used to summarise the key information from ISAs and DSAs. It is recommended that this summary information be placed at the front of all assessment reports.
Download the Assessment Summary Report Template (DOCX 29 kB)
This Part C of the Guidelines includes a revised version of Section C5. The revised Section C5 should be used to assess most concrete buildings. However, the revised Section C5 must NOT be used for an assessment that a territorial authority will use to decide if a building is earthquake prone. The other individual sections are the same as those that came into force on 1 July 2017. Download copies of the sections:
Download an overview and detailed summary of the changes between version 1 and the proposed technical revision of Section C5:
The July 2017 version of the Engineering Assessment Guidelines must be used for every assessment that a territorial authority will use to decide if a building is earthquake prone. This version is available from: