The structural role played by masonry infills on RC building performances after the 2011 Lorca, Spain, earthquake

Flavia De Luca*, Gerardo M. Verderame, Fernando Gómez-Martínez, Agustín Pérez-García

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

126 Citations (Scopus)
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On May 11, 2011 an earthquake of magnitude 5.1 Mw struck Murcia region causing nine casualties and damage to buildings and infrastructures. Even if the main characteristics of the event would classify it as a moderate earthquake, the maximum Peak Ground Acceleration (PGA) registered (equal to 0.37 g) exceeded significantly local code provisions in terms of hazard at the site. This high PGA was a result of directivity effects in the near source region. An overview of earthquake characteristics and damage observed is provided. Notwithstanding the lack of proper structural design characterizing building stock in the area, most of the losses were caused by non-structural damage. According to in field observations, it emerges that masonry infills provided additional, “not designed”, strength to reinforced concrete (RC) buildings. Observed damage data, collected after the earthquake, are shown and compared to the results of a simplified approach for nonstructural damage assessment of RC infilled structures (FAST vulnerability approach). The latter comparison provided a fair accordance between observed data and analytical results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1999-2026
Number of pages28
JournalBulletin of Earthquake Engineering
Issue number5
Early online date17 Aug 2013
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2014

Bibliographical note

Accepted on 29 July 2013


  • Lorca earthquake
  • Infills
  • Damage states
  • Nonstructural damage assessment
  • FAST vulnerability approach


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