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West Sacramento engineers studying quake destruction in Morocco

Engineers from West Sacramento to survey Morocco quake damage
Engineers from West Sacramento to survey Morocco quake damage 02:02

WEST SACRAMENTO — A team of West Sacramento engineers is combing through crumbled buildings and homes in Morocco. The earthquake devastation may be thousands of miles away, but it's close enough for local engineers to learn from.

Dr. Kit Miyamoto is the CEO of Miyamoto International, an engineering firm based in West Sacramento. He's now leading his team of construction experts in Morocco as they study the destruction to see what went wrong with the current infrastructure and what worked.

"So they can build back better. Therefore, when that next earthquake comes, you don't have to lose 5,000 people like they just did," Dr. Miyamoto told CBS13.

Dr. Miyamoto is working with the U.S. government and the United Nations to map out affordable reconstruction after the deadly 6.8-magnitude quake leveled buildings and homes.

"It's a poor area and there's no real access to areas really difficult to get to. So there's no way you can import a steel rebar concrete all the time, right? So you have to make this out of what you have," said Dr. Miyamoto.

He said they'll use their findings to make California safer. While he and his team are developing safer and more affordable ways to rebuild a half-a-world away, they're using techniques they'll bring home to Sacramento.

"A very simple technique essentially connecting the floor or roof to the wall. You know, there's very simple things you can do to make a building probably ten times safer, and that type of thing you know, something we see out here, is completely applicable in California," Dr. Miyamoto said.

His team has already helped after earthquakes in Haiti, Mexico and Japan. They're planning to stay in Morocco long-term to help them rebuild.

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