According to experts, all towering structures will wobble somewhat in the wind. However, builders must ensure that super-strong winds do not topple a tower. As a result, the concrete used to construct these enormous structures is reinforced with steel rods and beams. The Tower Building Act of 1951 requires that any building over 20 meters high be constructed with safety factors into its design for stability.
Tower blocks have been involved in several fatal accidents around the world. In June 1989, a nine-story building in Montreal collapsed because the rebar inside it had been removed, even though this was against Canadian law at the time. In October 1995, another nine-story building in Toronto collapsed because its rebar had been removed. In both cases, the buildings were not stable enough to withstand heavy winds. In January 1996, a tower block in London's Docklands area collapsed due to strong winds; three people died. In April 1999, another such building in Leeds collapsed due to severe winds; two people died.
The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has recommended that local governments issue an emergency declaration prior to any major storm or earthquake so that federal funds are available to repair or rebuild damaged public facilities. In addition, FEMA says that elevated sites like towers and high-rise buildings provide the best protection from falling objects during storms.
This steel is used to construct the skyscraper's "skeleton." It keeps the towering building from swinging too much, allowing it to survive strong winds.
The best way to keep a building from collapsing due to high winds is to make its structure rigid enough so that there are no weak points where the force of the wind could cause parts of it to break off. The larger the structure, the stronger it has to be to withstand high winds.
If a building does collapse, the force of the impact waves can travel for miles down the beach or river bank.
Beachgoers should exercise caution when walking on the sand near collapsed buildings. If you feel uncomfortable being close to the scene, then leave the area until officials give the all-clear.
Collapsed buildings also pose a threat of electrical wires and other hazards which can cause serious injury or death if not taken into account by those who work in or visit these places.
People who love outdoor activities should know how to avoid dangerous situations such as crossing paths with moving vehicles or unstable objects. Keep in mind that not all hazards can be avoided, but you can take measures to reduce your risk of injury or death if faced with such a situation.
This swaying does not imply that the structure is hazardous. For example, buildings should be designed with anti-sway plates or wires running through their core.
High-rise flats have been known to collapse due to strong winds. This can happen even if the building is not directly under construction pressure but rather during repair work on another part of the site. The damage may not be apparent until after a big storm when the remaining parts of the building start to fail. In such cases, you should assume that the whole thing will come down unless officials tell you it's safe to stay inside.
The best way to avoid injury is to find an area away from the edge of the building where there is no traffic. If you have to walk near one of these structures, try to do so at night or in areas where there are few people. Stay away from any dangling electrical cables or other hazards that might be lying in the shadow of the building.
If you are told that the whole thing is safe to enter, look for signs of damage such as cracks in the walls or ceilings, which could indicate that a floor or several floors are no longer stable.
"It can resist all the wind that nature can throw at it," is a simple explanation. A skyscraper's construction is made of steel and reinforced concrete, which are exceptionally robust in relation to the area exposed to wind forces. Skyscrapers have withstood winds as high as 300 miles per hour (480 km/hr) without being affected by them.
The most destructive force acting on a building is its own weight. This is why buildings have to be designed for safety, especially when they reach up into the sky. The weight of a building increases faster than the square of its height so a very heavy structure is required to be safe at extreme heights. For example, a 40-story building would need to be supported by 80 stories' worth of foundations to be safe.
When a strong wind blows against a tall building, it can cause problems for people on the ground who are not used to such conditions. The wind may feel like it's pushing down on the building, but actually it's lifting the top part of the structure off the ground. If enough of these small movements occur over time, then the building will collapse under its own weight.
There have been many incidents where this has happened as a result of natural disasters such as hurricanes or earthquakes, but also due to human errors such as cutbacks on maintenance work.