When National Preparedness Month rolls around each September, it’s a good time to consider the benefits metal buildings offer and how to prepare those structures for the possibility of adverse conditions. The good news is, metal buildings are built to withstand storms, and there are many products that meet Florida Building Commission guidelines — some of the most rigorous in existence. Whether you’re operating out of a metal building, or just considering it, here are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to disaster preparedness.
Benefits of Metal Buildings
A big part of preparedness is checking the structural integrity of your building, no matter what building material you’re dealing with. Wood and stone are porous and can weaken and break in a storm, so be diligent about making repairs as soon as possible. Metal buildings are made with durable steel and built to withstand flooding, high winds and the like. They’re also less likely to form mold. Even in extreme situations, mold won’t feed on metal and can be professionally removed without damaging a steel structure. And metal panels are easier to hammer out or replace than their wood or stone counterparts.
Florida Approved Products
Florida has experienced more than a few major hurricanes, which led to Florida-approved product lines that are engineered to meet the state’s rigorous high wind and impact resistance standards. The Florida Product Approval System goes beyond hurricanes. The certification process requires building accessories to undergo laboratory testing and evaluation for structural soundness in any high-wind conditions. There are also validation and quality assurance regulations that must meet ISO standard 17020 by an ANSI-accredited organization. Wherever possible, opt for Florida Approved Products if high winds could be a danger in your area.
Hurricanes rank among the most dangerous natural disasters because they cause both wind and water damage. When preparing your facility for hurricane season, start with the landscaping. Be sure trees are trimmed and any heavy equipment or tools that could become projectiles are safely stored inside or in storage containers. If your area is prone to flooding, look into mitigation strategies such as retention ponds, sandbags and other ways to safeguard the facility. Protecting the area before the storm can help prevent damage.
No matter what type of environmental conditions your building may face, advance preparation goes a long way toward making cleanup easier. If you have questions about preparing your existing metal building, or you’re considering metal for your next facility, contact our team. We’re glad to help you pull a plan together!