Guide for securing freestanding cabinets to prevent damage to real estate property during earthquake

by Property Management Software on April 16, 2010

Guide to preventing damage from freestanding cabinets to real estate property during earthquake

Guide to preventing damage from freestanding cabinets to real estate property during earthquake

In an earthquake, the actual movement of the ground is seldom the direct cause of death or injury. Most casualties result from falling objects and debris from buildings or other structures. A significant damage can occur to valuable property and contents when they turn into projectiles and not only are dangerous to residents but also the damage to the contents itself.

Freestanding cabinets can topple over in a seismic event.  Attaching cabinets to the walls and floors can help prevent damage to them and their contents.

  • Floors
    • Use L-brackets or Z-brackets
    • Attach with No. 8 or larger machine screws with nuts and washers.
    • For wood floors:
      • Use 3-inch No. 8 wood screws
      • Attach the screws, penetrating the wood for the most secure connection
    • For concrete floors:
      • Pre-drill holes
      • Insert plastic anchors
      • Attach in 3-inch long No. 8 or larger screws or consider using 3/16-inch diameter or larger masonry screws.
  • Walls
    • Use L-brackets or Z-brackets
    • For wood stud walls:
      • Use 3-inch No. 8 wood screws
        • Locate the stud
        • Attach the screws, penetrating the wood for the most secure connection
      • For stone or masonry walls
        • Pre-drill holes
        • Insert plastic anchors
        • Attach in 3-inch No. 8 or larger screws or consider using 3/16-inch diameter or larger masonry screws
  • Attach cabinets together
    • Use steel straps to tie tops together for a more stable configuration
    • Attach using No. 8 or larger machine screws with nuts and washers

Source: Institute for Business & Home Safety

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