IBHS Urges Midwesterners to Repair and Rebuild Stronger
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IBHS Urges Midwesterners to Repair and Rebuild Stronger

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Tampa, FL – November 3, 2010 – (RealEstateRama) — As Midwest residents recover from last week’s severe wind, rain and snow storms, the Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) urges home and business owners to incorporate disaster-resistant techniques into their repair and rebuilding efforts.

On October 27, a massive wind, rain and snow storm blew across the Midwest, with wind gusts reaching speeds of 80 mph. The storm also reportedly triggered as many as 12 tornadoes. Thankfully, no deaths were reported, but the storm caused major property damage to homes and businesses, leaving some structures uninhabitable.

“This severe weather event once again demonstrates the unpredictable, awesome power of Mother Nature,” said Julie Rochman, IBHS president and CEO. “It also underscores the importance of building and retrofitting structures to better withstand nature’s power and fury before the next storm roars through.”

IBHS offers the following high-wind resistant retrofit techniques for homeowners:

If you are re-roofing:

  • Replace any damaged roof sheathing, and have the roof deck re-nailed by adding 8d ring shank nails, or apply a closed-cell, urethane-based adhesive to joints between roof sheathing and all trusses and along joints between sheathing panels.
  • If you can gain access to the roof-to-wall connection, either through the soffit or by removing roof sheathing along the edges, apply steel straps that tie the roof to the walls.
  • Apply a secondary water barrier on the roof.
  • Be sure to use a high-wind-rated roof covering.
  • Brace gable ends over about 4-feet tall (link for “how-to” information).

If you are re-siding:

  •  Check wall sheathing behind siding, and replace any damaged sheathing; have sheathing re-nailed by adding ring shank nails with at least a 6-inch spacing along panel edges and 12-inch spacing along wall framing in the middle of the panels.
  • Use high-wind rated impact resistant siding.

If you replace windows or doors:

  • Choose exterior doors that have a pressure rating of at least 25 pounds per square foot and open outward instead of inward – unless you do not have enough of a landing outside your door and the code requires the door to open inward.
  • Make sure that any replacement windows have a pressure rating of at least 25 pounds per square foot.

For business owners, there are several relatively inexpensive loss reduction and prevention measures that can be implemented to protect commercial buildings from future damage and minimize operational disruption. Some simple risk reduction strategies include:

If you are re-roofing:

  • Choose a roof cover system that includes a building code Product Approval appropriate for your region, and is installed by a reputable contractor.
  • Ensure that perimeter roof flashing is well-secured and does not have any gaps where wind can get under it.
  • Roof mounted equipment should be well-secured to the structural components of the roof, so it does not become windborne debris that can puncture the roof cover.

If you have to replace roll-up doors or garage doors:

  • Make sure that roll-up doors or garage doors have a pressure rating of at least 25 pounds per square foot.

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About the IBHS

IBHS is an independent, nonprofit, scientific and educational organization supported by the property insurance industry. The organization works to reduce the social and economic effects of natural disasters and other risks to residential and commercial property by conducting research and advocating improved construction, maintenance and preparation practices.

Contact:
Joseph King (813) 675-1045
jking (at) ibhs (dot) org
Twitter: disastersafety

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