Seismic Vulnerability Assessment of Existing Buildings by Rapid Visual Screening Method: A Study on Ward 27 in Dhaka South City Corporation

  • Moly Podder Department of Urban and Regional Planning, Pabna University of Science & Technology, Pabna, Bangladesh
  • Md. Kamrul Hasan Department of Urban and Regional Planning, Pabna University of Science & Technology, Pabna, Bangladesh
  • Md. Jahidul Islam
Keywords: Keywords: Earthquake; Seismic Vulnerability; Rapid Visual Screening; Dhaka City.


With the rapid growth of urbanization, the possibility of hazard has increased. Owing to high population concentrations and economic activities, the likelihood of hazards in urban areas is more nuanced than in rural areas. Vulnerability assessment of hazards has been a hot topic in the field of Engineering and Urban and Regional Planning. Due to the complicated hazard characteristics, not only engineering but planning approaches are required in order to effectively mitigate hazards.In recent years, the rapid growth of Dhaka cities has accelerated the pressure on existing buildings, and there is a need to establish adequate seismic safety screening methods for existing buildings specific to building typologies. Dhaka City is in danger of an earthquake and several incidents have occurred. In most situations, the lack of appropriate precautionary steps, administrative inefficiency, inadequate funds for equipment and lack of public knowledge make the situation worse. Ward 27, an old part of Dhaka City, was chosen for seismic vulnerability assessment in this survey. For seismic vulnerability assessment, a sample of 300 buildings was evaluated using Rapid visual screening (RVS) process by Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The rapid visual screening process is the initial stage in the assessment of existing buildings. The survey focuses on earthquake issues such as building type, size and shape of the plot, specific distances from surrounding structures, road width and basic building information.The use of Rapid Visual Screening (RVS) in the field of research allows screened buildings to be divided into two categories: those that are expected to have sufficient seismic efficiency and those that could be seismically unsafe and that should be further studied.

 Keywords: Earthquake; Seismic Vulnerability; Rapid Visual Screening; Dhaka City.


1. X. S.-i.-. Martin, “The Global Competitiveness Report 2011,” World Economic Forum, 2011-12.
2. Apu, N., & Das, U. (2020). Tectonics and earthquake potential of Bangladesh: A review. International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment, 12(3), 295–307.

3. Steckler, M. S., Mondal, D. R., Akhter, S. H., Seeber, L., Feng, L., & Gale, J. (2016). Locked and loading megathrust linked to active subduction beneath the Indo-Burman Ranges. Nature Geoscience, 9(8), 615–618.

4. Shaw, R., Mallick, F. & Islam, A. (2013). Disaster Risk Reduction Approaches in Bangladesh. Springer, 103.

5. GoB. (2015). Atlas: Seismic Risk Assessment in Bangladesh for Bogra, Dinajpur, Mymensingh, Rajshahi, Rangpurand Tangail City Corporation / Paurashava Areas, Bangladesh. Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief,Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.

6. Alam, M., Ansary, M. A., Chowdhuary, R. K., Uddin, A. J., Islam, S., and Rahman, S. (2008). Evaluation ofBuilding's Vulnerability to Earthquake in Old Part of Sylhet and Construction Safety Rules. IUST InternationalJournal of Engineering Science, Vol. 19, No.3.

7. Rahman, M.Z.; Siddiqua, S.; Kamal, A.S.M.M. Liquefaction hazard mapping by liquefaction potential index for Dhaka City, Bangladesh. Eng. Geol. 2015, 188, 137–147.

8. Ahmed, M.Z.; Islam, K.; Roy, K.S.; Arafat, M.S.; Al-Hussaini, T.M. Seismic vulnerability assessment of RCF buildings in old town of Dhaka city. In Proceedings of the 3rd International Earthquake Symposium, Dhaka, Bangladesh, 5–6 March 2010

9. DDC. Bangladesh National Building Code 1993; Development Design Consultants for Housing and Building Research Institute: Dhaka, Bangladesh, 1993.

10. URP- phase 1. Bangladesh Urban Resilience Project, Environmental Management Framework (EMF) Draft; The World Bank: Washington, DC, USA, 2014.

11. Khan, A.A. Geophysical characterization and earthquake hazard vulnerability of Dhaka Mega City, Bangladesh, vis-à-vis impact of scenario earthquakes. Nat. Hazards 2016, 82, 1147–1166.

12. S. Sterlacchini, “Vulnerability Assessment: concepts, definitions and methods,” in National Research Council of Italy, Milan Italy, 2011.

13. M.Ballarin, C.Balletti, P.Faccio, F. Guerra, A.Saetta and P.Vernier, “SURVEY METHODS FOR SEISMIC VULNERABILITY ASSESSMENT OF HISTORICAL MASONRY BUILDINGS,” The International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences,, p. 55, 2017.

14. N. Rahman, “Vulnerability Assessment of Earthquake and Fire Hazard and Formulating Risk Reduction Strategies at Community Level,” Dhaka city, June 2014.

15. I. Jahan, “Earthquake Vulnerability and Evacuation Plan for Old Dhaka,” Dhaka, 2011.

16. “Rajuk,Detail Area Plan,” Dhaka, 2010-2015.

17. FEMA P-154: Rapid Visual Screening for Potential Seismic Hazards, Washington DC: American Society of Civil Engineers, December 2015.
How to Cite
Podder, M., Hasan, M. K., & Islam, M. J. (2022). Seismic Vulnerability Assessment of Existing Buildings by Rapid Visual Screening Method: A Study on Ward 27 in Dhaka South City Corporation. International Journal of Disaster Risk Management, 4(2), 77-91.