Letter: To Save Lives, Warehouse Design Must Be Redesigned For Extreme Weather Conditions | Letters to the Editor
Regarding “” Not Invented To Withstand Tornadoes “: Officials, Experts Focus On Building Amazon Warehouses” (December 13): It was horrible to read about the loss of lives in the collapse of the Amazon warehouse near Edwardsville. If I consider the large number of very large warehouses similar to the Amazon building, this could happen again with future tornadoes. It seems very likely that the warehouse met building standards and yet it collapsed, so civil engineers may want to revise the building standards. A warehouse with a wall 40 feet high and 300 feet long features a huge sail area, matching some of the tallest sailing ships in history.
The first design change would be to strengthen the walls to withstand tornado winds that could reach 200 miles per hour. Also, unlike the Edwardsville collapse, these buildings should have an underground tornado shelter made of reinforced concrete that can withstand the collapse of the building and not entrap those inside if the building fails. collapses. Let’s take this as a lesson in new construction and modernization of existing warehouses. This would increase construction costs somewhat, but it should not be used as an excuse to ignore occupant safety.