The QuakeStar system requires the owner to appoint an Assessing Engineer and a Reviewing Engineer, both of whom are acceptable to QuakeStar as individuals known and respected for their knowledge of building performance in earthquake, experience in a professional capacity in structural and earthquake engineering and the necessary judgement to assess likely outcomes.
Steps in the process are:
- The owner appoints an Assessing Engineer (on a QuakeStar-approved list of individuals) who examines the site and the building and reviews the design documents, especially structural drawings.
- The Assessing Engineer uses QuakeStar Worksheets to assign the star-ratings for Safety, Damage and Repair Time.
- The owner appoints a Reviewing Engineer (approved as independent by QuakeStar) who reviews the assessment and the ratings of the Assessing Engineer.
- The Assessing Engineer and Reviewing Engineer must then compare notes and agree on each of the three ratings. (They do not have to agree on the detailed reasons).
- The owner receives the agreed ratings and reviews the reports from both the Assessing Engineer and the Reviewing Engineer. If it is clear that ratings would increase if identified improvements were made, the owner may choose to take action on these and ask the engineers to update their ratings.
- The owner then applies for ratification of the ratings by QuakeStar Office. The owner pays a fee for this process. Reports by the Assessing and Reviewing Engineers may be required by QuakeStar on a confidential basis for the purposes of ratification only.
- The QuakeStar Technical Advisory Panel reviews the building ratings and either confirms them or requests further work or clarification – until it is satisfied that the ratings are reasonable.
- Once ratified the three QuakeStar ratings (Safety, Damage and Repair Time) are made available to all on the QuakeStar website.
- Reports by the engineers remain confidential and may only be released to others with the written approval of the owners on each occasion.
- The owner is obliged to advise QuakeStar of any significant changes to the building that may alter the ratings. In such a case the owner is required to obtain updated ratings from the original Assessing Engineer and Reviewing Engineer – or from different Assessing and Reviewing Engineers acceptable to QuakeStar.
- Every five years the owner must submit an update report on the building and apply for extension of the rating and listing on the QuakeStar website for a further five years.