19 Dec Update: How the Roofing Contracting Industry Handled Hurricane Season
The past few years we’ve seen an onslaught of severe weather across the country. From floods to hurricanes, wildfires to tornados, construction across the country has suffered the wrath of mother nature. In many cases, there isn’t a lot we can do to protect against natural disasters, but there are a few preventative steps to take to increase your odds of making it out of a weather event with minimal damage to your construction site.
Wind seems like the most innocent of natural events, but it can wreak havoc on your roofing construction project. According to a report by Travelers Insurance, wind damage leads to millions of dollars in damage and delays every year. To protect yourself against the wind, be sure to properly store and manage materials for windy conditions. Before wind hits, secure as much of your roofing project as possible, store all materials, not in use, and be sure conditions are regulated before returning to construction. Don’t underestimate the strength of a wind event. Secure all materials, even heavier materials you might not consider at risk for wind damage.
Although not all parts of the country have to worry about hurricanes, they do pose a threat to our coastal contractors. The first step in fighting back against hurricanes is developing a plan for inclement weather. Start with a checklist of actions to take before the event hits. Be sure to plan for all points of development. Your checklist will change dramatically from beginning of a project to a project near completion. Secure as much of the project as possible and create a plan for relocating materials. Not only do you need to remove materials from the site itself, keep in mind other factors like flooding to be sure you don’t incur more loss in materials. Again, check the safety of all structures before returning to work.
Flooding can be the result of inclement weather or other factors like burst pipes. Protect your materials from flooding by storing them in a dry location with access to higher points to save materials in the event of a flood. Flooding also slows down production time, so be sure to have a plan. In the event of any severe weather, your safety and the safety of your staff is the most important factor. Be sure all of your workers are aware of the safety process in the event of a disaster. Go over plans thoroughly prior to events.
Although not a natural disaster, theft is a real hurdle for managing projects and protecting materials. Your best defense is safeguarding sites from the start. Use physical barriers to deter thieves and help warn people of an ongoing construction site. From there, utilize locks for storing materials and don’t leave tools or high-value materials unattended at the site. Video surveillance also helps deter theft and can help track down valuable materials in the event of a loss.
Despite our best efforts, sometimes mother nature has a mind of her own. The best we can do is plan in advance, practice safety processes and minimize the impact with proper planning.