Inspections of 213 homes in Zuidlaren area

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Following the earthquake in the vicinity of Zuidlaren on 23 December 2016 (measuring 2.4 on the Richter scale), a total of 213 reports of damage were received. This week engineering agency Witteveen+Bos began inspecting the affected homes. Inspections are expected to be completed early April. This will be followed by an examination and assessment of the causes of the damage to the homes. The outcomes are likely to be made known early June to the people who reported the damage.

Inspections and communication

NAM asked Witteveen+Bos to investigate the damage reports and also to communicate with residents who reported damage to their homes. Witteveen+Bos deployed its own liaison officer for the residents. For 27 homes also the subject of damage investigations ensuing from earthquakes originating in the Groningen gas field, the Safe Housing Centre (CVW) remains responsible for communication with residents.

Examining damage in 5 steps

Investigation of the reported damage occurs in five 5 steps:

  1. Complete inspection of all homes where damage was reported.
  2. Within two weeks of the inspection, the residents receive a report of the inspection.
  3. Witteveen+Bos experts assess all the surveyed instances of damage. During the assessment, they indicate the possible causes of the damage.
  4. A large amount of information will be gathered by investigating the damage reported to the 213 homes. This information will be analysed and used to check the assessment in step 3.

After the assessment

If it is established that the damage to a home was caused by the earthquake, the resident will entitled to compensation from NAM. The further formalities for compensation will be the responsibility of NAM.

Appeals possibility

Residents who disagree with the outcomes of the investigation can make their objections known to the Soil Movement Technical Committee. The committee is an independent body that advises on the link between exploration, mineral extraction and soil movements.