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Comparison of loads in Turkish earthquake code with those computed statistically

In this study, earthquake loads are investigated statistically and compared with the nominal earthquake loads calculated according to the Turkish Earthquake Code, namely: "Specifications for Structures to be Built in Earthquake Areas". For this purpose, the "actual" mean load values estimated from statistical methods and the nominal load values computed according the Seismic Code are compared, with respect to some variations in the basic parameters, such as the importance factor, building height, site coefficient, seismic zone and seismic load reduction factor. In addition to the data compiled from different regions of Turkey, the published data and information in the foreign literature are also used in the determination of the earthquake load statistics. Although the dead and live loads acting on a structure are independent of the geographical location of the structure, environmental loads, such as earthquake loads are highly dependent on the location of the structure. Accordingly, for the assessment of statistical parameters associated with earthquake loads, twelve different locations which can represent the different seismic zones of Turkey as accurately as possible are chosen. As a result of the code calibration procedure considered in this study, it is observed that the load values obtained from the Turkish Seismic Code may overestimate or underestimate the actual seismic loads in some of the seismic zones.