Earthbag Domes Survive Hurricane Chapala

Earthbag domes before the hurricane
Earthbag domes before the hurricane

“Hi Owen, Our earthbag dome has not been finished, we ran out of budget. The Chapala cyclone hit the area with very severe storms and rains a few weeks ago, here are the walls before and after.”
Earthbag domes after the hurricane
Earthbag domes after the hurricane

Owen: Sorry to hear you’ve been unable to finish your earthbag domes. The good news is the house has survived and you can continue work at any time. Fortunately you got some plaster on the walls in time to protect them from UV and rain.

Once again we see another example of earthbag buildings holding up through natural disasters. Conventional domes made of adobe, wood, etc. are not very strong until they’re finished (they often collapse), but as you can see here and in many other cases earthbag buildings are incredibly strong. Domes and roundhouses are the best option in hurricane areas because there are no flat areas for pressure to build up against. The wind just blows around it.

According to Wikipedia: Hurricane Chapala became the strongest cyclone on record to hit Yemen, as well as the most powerful storm known to have existed in the Gulf of Aden.

1 thought on “Earthbag Domes Survive Hurricane Chapala”

  1. It looks to me from the pictures that the storm pretty much stripped all of the mud plaster off the walls as well as the PP bag material that was exposed. What can be seen is the inner fill material that is still intact.
    This building could likely be replastered and be fine, although in a damp climate perhaps the plaster should be cement based with a mesh embedded.


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