Author Archives: Ashley Bernero

About Ashley Bernero

Product Manager - Model Development, RMS.

Ashley is a Product Manager within the Earthquake Model Product Management team. At RMS, Ashley is primarily focused on the New Zealand Earthquake Model suite of products; with a secondary focus on supporting RMS clients transitioning onto the updated North America Earthquake Model. Ashley joined the Model Product Management team after four years in a model-focused client support role. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Pennsylvania State University, and a master’s degree in Civil Engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology.

It’s What’s On The Inside That Counts

Most people use this phrase when it comes to judging a person’s character, but few would think to use it when assessing a building’s preparedness against damage from seismic activity. Cracked foundations, toppled walls, and collapsed buildings are normally what comes to mind when envisioning a building damaged from an earthquake; and while they are of course costly to repair, surprisingly this type of damage is not the main cause of loss to insurers.

Over 70 percent of a building’s value comes from non-structural elements such as internal and external cladding, interior walls, glazing and the internal fit-out, such as heating and air conditioning systems, pipes, ceiling support systems, and lighting. Building codes dictate how these internal systems should be installed and detail the necessary seismic restraints to keep them in place in the event of intense ground shaking. Failure to properly implement these measures can result in significant damage and expensive payouts, even if the structural integrity and exterior of the building remains intact. Recent global earthquake events such as Kaikoura in 2016 reflect this and have shown that non-structural damage drives claims.

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New Data, New Challenges: How RMS Updated the Version 17 North America Earthquake Models

Technology, data, and science continues to evolve when assessing and understanding earthquake risk; the new continually replaces the old. In AD 132, Chinese polymath Zhang Heng demonstrated his seismoscope, the first scientific instrument used to Continue reading