Hurricane Building Damage

An interview excerpt with Jeff Chester, Vice President

Interviewer: What can I expect to happen to my business during a hurricane?

Jeff Chester: Well if you think about what is happening during a hurricane, you have 70-mile-an-hour winds, blowing rain sideways. Your building is designed for rain to come down from the top. It’s got a good roof, it’s got good drains, whatever type of guttering or scuppers, whatever they use to keep the rain out. But, your building is also designed to take air in and that’s usually through gable vents, through cobra vents and through roof vents. A lot of our properties and hospitality in senior care have what we call PTACs. These are individual air conditioning/heating units that you see sticking out of the side of the building for each room. All of those take air in and they’re designed for day-to-day rain that falls down vertically. And when the rain blows for five hours sideways, that rain is going to find its way in to all those areas of the building that really weren’t designed to take that kind. So, the building gets really wet. How to prepare for that? You know sometimes it’s difficult to impossible to cover every area, especially if you want to continue to get airflow into your building. So, the preparation part is asking yourself, do you have a company that’s going to be there immediately to start mitigating the loss? That means to minimize the damage and prevent secondary damage.