2/10/21 ECA SoCal Online Workshop

The recording of this workshop and key links mentioned are now available (below).

Promotional graphic for the ECA SoCal February 10, 2021 online workshop listing speakers, time, and where to register

DATE: Wednesday, February 10, 2021

TIME: 10:00am – 12:00pm

VENUE: Zoom Meeting

THEME: 50 years since the 1971 San Fernando (Sylmar) Earthquake: Lessons Learned that Shape and Protect Our Lives Today


The February 9, 1971 San Fernando earthquake was the first to cause significant damage within the LA region since the rapid growth of the 1940’s-60’s. The impacts on communities, infrastructure, and large buildings led to new building codes and land-use policies that have shaped our skylines and our communities (for example, new restrictions from building on top of active faults led to the creation of long and narrow parks, wide streets, and other adaptations within new communities).These improvements have also reduced potential injuries and deaths in earthquakes since, and those to come.

This workshop featured the following speakers who discussed this history and how the codes and policies continue to shape our environment and our lives today, and how we all can advocate for continued improvements to our resilience.


  • Marjorie Smith (Morongo Basin COAD Chair):
    1971 San Fernando Valley resident evacuated due to imminent collapse of Van Norman Dam
  • Tim Dawson (Senior Engineering Geologist, California Geological Survey):
    Landscapes, Legislation, and the Legacy of the 1971 San Fernando Earthquake in California
  • Ken Hudnut (Seismic Expert, Southern California Edison):
    Impacts to infrastructure, and communities and the improvements they inspired that continue to be made today
  • Susan Dowty (Government Relations Manager, International Code Council):
    Evolution of building codes since the earthquake, and general overview of building codes.
  • Keith Harrison (Emergency Management Consultant):
    Emergency response and how lessons learned then have improved response to earthquake and other disasters since.


Workshop Video Recording (Youtube; also view below)

Brief survey (Please complete after viewing the workshop (live or recorded)

Select links mentioned during the workshop:

(Click “CC” to see captions, once the video starts playing)


QUESTIONS: socal@earthquakecountry.org