2022 Hurricane Season: Let’s Evaluate Your Roof.
The 2022 hurricane season is lurking around the corner. Preparing your facility to face anything Mother Nature throws at it is vital, particularly considering massive material shortages and backlogs plaguing the construction and roofing industries.
Colorado State University (CSU)1 experts anticipate "above-normal activity" for the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, including 19 named storms and 9 hurricanes, 4 of which are expected to be major. What does that mean for your facility's roof? A major challenge. However, with proper hurricane preparedness plan, you can be ready for the unexpected.
The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale2 puts hurricanes into five categories based on sustained wind speeds, ranging from 74 mph to over 157 mph. Add heavy rain, airborne debris, falling trees, and you have a perfect storm of elements resulting in roof damage. Common post-hurricane and heavy storms roofing issues include:
- Blow offs - either complete or partial
- Seam failure or membrane separation
- Tears or holes from debris or rooftop equipment
- Blocked drains, gutters and downspouts from debris
- Skylight damage
While no facility is 100% immune to hurricane damage, there are ways to soften the impact by improving your roof's condition. Let's see how we can do that!
BEFORE A HURRICANE:
1. Complete a roof evaluation. The first step in your hurricane preparedness plan should be a comprehensive roof inspection that will identify the weak points on your roof. Knowing your roof's current state allows you to schedule repairs or conduct any necessary maintenance to increase overall performance during a storm or hurricane. For example, while seemingly trivial things like a warping metal edge may not affect your everyday operations immediately, they may cause severe damage when confronted by hurricane winds. Having a condition report before any storm damage can also help you navigate the insurance claims process faster.
2. Don't delay repairs and maintenance. The roofing industry is still experiencing significant material and labor shortages that cause backlogs and price increases. The sooner you schedule your repairs, the sooner your contractor will be able to complete them.
3. Keep your rooftop projections secured. If your facility is in an area particularly susceptible to hurricanes, ensure that hurricane straps and other protective measures are in place.
4. Keep your rooftop clean and free of unnecessary objects. Flying debris poses a significant danger during hurricanes. Do you have any potential projectiles on your roof, such as sleepers, nail blocks or unsecured walk pads? It is vital to ensure that these are all properly secured to avoid unnecessary damage and potential hazards to your customers and employees.
5. Keep your drains and gutters clean. Standing water can damage your roof; therefore, unrestricted drainage is crucial. Your roof drainage system will go into overdrive during an inclement weather event due to large amounts of precipitation and airborne debris from surrounding areas.
6. Secure or cover your skylights. Consult your roofing contractor and implement necessary modifications to prevent skylight damage during hurricanes.
AFTER A HURRICANE:
Once the storm has passed, it's time to regroup and address the potential damages.
1. Notice a partial or complete roof blow off? Serious leaks? Call our 24/7 emergency line. The most important thing is to alleviate further damage and protect what is inside your building. Call 855-483-1975 in the US and 800-690-6254 in Canada and a local CentiMark roofing crew will be dispatched as soon as it is safe to travel to your area.
2. Schedule a post-hurricane roof evaluation. Roof damage and new water penetration points may not be immediately visible to an untrained eye. For example, flying debris landing on your roof may cause small punctures in your roof membrane. High winds may start membrane separation. A thorough inspection will help determine if your roof sustained any unseen damage that may manifest itself later on, well after your insurance claim is settled. Therefore it is crucial to have a thorough roof evaluation after a major weather event.
1.“Forecast for 2022 Hurricane Activity,”
Colorado State University Tropical Weather & Climate Research, Apr 7, 2022
2. “Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale”,
National Hurricane Center
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