The authors discuss some of the unique aspects and lessons of the New Zealand post-earthquake building safety inspection program that was implemented following the Canterbury earthquake sequence of 2010–2011. The post-event safety assessment program was one of the largest and longest programs undertaken in recent times anywhere in the world. The effort engaged hundreds of engineering professionals throughout the country, and also sought expertise from outside, to perform post-earthquake structural safety inspections of more than 100,000 buildings in the city of Christchurch and the surrounding suburbs. While the building safety inspection procedure implemented was analogous to the ATC 20 program in the United States, many modifications were proposed and implemented in order to assess the large number of buildings that were subjected to strong and variable shaking during a period of two years. This note discusses some of the key aspects of the post-earthquake building safety inspection program and summarizes important lessons that can improve future earthquake response.

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