The UAE experienced tremors from major Iran earthquakes not once but twice in the month of April. Despite what rumours you might have heard, not once did residents have to evacuate Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower.
Of course, there was no threat as residents felt only minor tremors. But if ever the alarms go off, there is unlikely to be any commotion. Residents of the 828-metre high tower are aware of the evacuation process.
The building has regular fire drills and residents are always told in advance when they will take place.
Nothing is left for the last minute – everything is well planned in the tower. Residents are trained on what they have to do in case of any emergency when they move into the tower.
Full one-to-one training and a booklet with instructions to follow in the event of any type of emergency is given to all who have moved in. The training included events such as fire, earthquake, lightening, storms etc.
There are bunker-like locations around the building where they have to go to in the event of emergency. They are quite impressive. There are also special elevators near the bunkers. Most importantly, there is an entire emergency team on duty at all times.
While any building is near 100 per cent secure from every catastrophe, residents feel very safe at Burj Khalifa.
Last Tuesday, there were random tweets about residents being asked to evacuate the Burj Khalifa. However, residents confirmed that there was no evacuation.
Minor tremors were felt. But there was no evacuation or damage to the tower.
Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, the firm behind the tower’s design, has said earlier that the expected effects of a seismic event on the tower are “modest”.
The tower is supported by a large reinforced concrete mat, which is in turn supported by bored reinforced concrete piles. The design is based on extensive geotechnical and seismic investigations and analysis.
Besides, the long vibration period of the Burj Khalifa is quite different from the high frequency vibrations of an earthquake and so the structure does not generate large force in case of a seismic event, the firm has said.
Burj Khalifa has 900 studios, one-, two-, three- and four-bedrooms, while the Armani Residences has 144 fully furnished private apartments. The tower offers luxurious recreational and leisure facilities including four swimming pools, an exclusive residents’ lounge; health and wellness facilities; At.mosphere, the world’s highest fine dining restaurant at level 122 and At the Top, the world’s highest observatory deck, with an outdoor terrace on level 124.