LA councilman proposes quake building inventory

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A Los Angeles city councilman wants to find buildings that could collapse in an earthquake.

The Los Angeles Times says Tom LaBonge is proposing a city inventory of so-called "soft-story" buildings — those where the top stories could collapse onto the lower floor during a major temblor.

Many are apartment and condo buildings with ground-floor parking. The inventory would list buildings built before 1978 with at least two stories and five units.

There could be thousands of such buildings in town. About 200 were badly damaged or destroyed during the 1994 Northridge earthquake, including an apartment complex that collapsed, killing 16 people.

The councilman's proposal comes four months after San Francisco passed a law forcing owners to strengthen about 3,000 soft-story apartment buildings.

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