18 May 2021

980′ Chinese Skyscraper Evacuated Due to Swaying

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NY Post:

A Chinese skyscraper had to be evacuated Tuesday afternoon after it began inexplicably swaying on its foundation, prompting scores of bystanders to flee in terror, as seen in a series of viral videos circulating social media.

The shaky incident occurred around 1 p.m. at Shenzhen’s SEG Electronics Building, which is one of China’s tallest structures in the city at a whopping 980 feet tall.

“The people in the building and downstairs fled for their lives!” read the caption to one of the Twitter clips, which depicts petrified shoppers stampeding across a plaza like scene out of a monster movie.

A follow-up clip posted by local media shows the top of the 73-story structure, on which two white conductor poles can be seen wobbling precariously.

The building was sealed off around 2:40 p.m. after all the residents had been evacuated, the Daily Mail reported.

Nonetheless, authorities remain baffled by the cause of the mishap as there “was no earthquake in Shenzhen” that day, according to a statement by emergency services. Meanwhile, weather reports clocked the local wind speed at 27 miles per hour, which is not nearly powerful enough to shake a building.

“The cause of the shaking is being verified by various departments,” the statement read.

This isn’t the first structural catastrophe to occur in China, which has been criticized for erecting buildings in haste amid its rapid urbanization campaign.


5 Feedbacks on "980′ Chinese Skyscraper Evacuated Due to Swaying"

bob sykes

All tall buildings sway. The problem is to keep the violence of the motion below the inner ear ability to detect it.

The classic example in the US is the John Hancock tower in Boston. Its swaying also caused illness, and it popped the huge windows out of their frames. The building was retrofitted with anti-sway dampers in the upper stories and new window at immense cost.

The Sear Tower (now renamed) sways slowly and undetectably, but you can see coffee slop back and forth in a cup, which is unnerving enough.

Hairless Joe

It is most likely a resonance, which should have been picked up when the structure was simulated (cough, cough). The solution is described correctly by Bob.


That’s all fine and dandy but this is China we’re talking about. I automatically presume the concrete is defective, weak mix, too wet mixed, and adulterated. Ditto the steel; shoddy, rusty, under engineered (if engineered at all). I’d no more enter a Chinese skyscraper than I’d board a Chinese plane, eat Chinese farm raised fish, or buy a child a Chinese lollipop. They are an awful people living under an awful regime.


Wats a little wiggle? It’s cheap (even after the bribes).

Hey! No one got nailed for those Twin Towers. Cheap (relatively), went up like a Lego toy and had only one failure mode….everyone inside dies. The designer must have been smoking some good weed and somebody paid off the NYC Engineers who approved those death traps.

bob sykes

People are forever mocking Chinese-made crap. And the truth is that much of the Chinese economy is wild-West laissez faire capitalism, something we haven’t seen since the end of the 19th Century.

However, 30% of the World’s manufacturing capacity is in China. (The US is second with 16%.) They make a lot of very high end, high quality tech like iMacs and iPhones. They put robots on the Moon and Mars. They have more supercomputers than any other country (including the US), and they are all home grown from chips to operating systems. Until last year they had the two fastest supercomputers in the world.

Whatever technical advantages our military used to have have been largely erased by both Russia and China, the one exception (for now) being super quiet nuclear subs. (But diesel electrics are quieter than any nuke.)

The days of American technical superiority are gone. There is a level playing field among the major powers. We should pray that we never get into a war with Russia-China.


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