Your Business’s Potential Flood Hazard: Know Your Risk
Just a few inches of water can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage to your business. According to FEMA, the average commercial flood claim was nearly $90,000. Before next storm season, consider your risk and the consequences of a flood event, and make the choice to protect your clients, your inventory, your employees and your livelihood.
Floods involve complex issues involving hydrological, engineering, regulatory or insurance experts. Here are some of the challenges:
Types Of Flooding
Both topography and weather conditions impact of flooding have on specific locations:
- For those in Orlando, large, slow-moving tropical storms dump tons of rain on coastal locations, then continue the devastation inland.
- Heavy rains can cause rising water to breach river beds.
- Moving water is a serious risk in areas near rivers or in coastal storm surge areas since it causes larger lateral pressure on a building.
- The opening of dams and other flood control mechanisms designed to protect by diverting the flow of water can lead to even more severe flood damage than if the levees were never installed.
- Flash flooding can occur in every region as a result of slow-moving thunderstorms, lack of vegetation, or excessive rainfall from any storm system.
Understanding Your Flood Factors
According to The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS), there are several flood principles that should be considered to determine your facility’s exposure to flooding waters and the type of protection to be deployed:
Duration: Will flood waters recede quickly or will the slope of the land “pool” the water longer?. The longer the exposure, the greater the potential for failures and breaches the protection.
Depth: Flood waters deeper than 3 feet create pressure on walls, causing cracks in masonry. Deeper water greatly increases the damage to unreinforced masonry.
Velocity: As flood water velocity increases, so does the pressure exerted on flood protection. More damage results from very fast moving river water and wave action from storm surge.
Water Condition: Flood water can be dirty, brackish or contaminated with materials including waste-water, sewage, pesticides, industrial waste, toxic and non-toxic chemicals, or oils. Debris in the water can impact buildings and flood protection systems.
Location, Location, Location
The most relevant risk factor for flooding is “how close are you to water”; t is always a best practice to locate your property as far away from bodies of water as possible. However, property owners can’t assume following the floodplain map will avoid all possibility of flooding. Maps from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) identify 100-year (and 500-year) flood zones in the United States. The flood zones define participation in the insurance plan and other requirements that communities may adopt in order to meet NFIP standards. So by definition, the 100-year flood zone means there is a 1 percent chance of flooding annually in an area based on topography and historical data.
However, this does not that your place can only flood once in a century. Floods can occur beyond the 100-year flood zone boundary. Perhaps 25 percent of all flood damages occur in relatively low-risk zones commonly described as being “outside the mapped flood zone.”
Reduce Your Risk
How can you “expect the unexpected?” Prepare now with a disaster preparation planning team. Unlimited Restoration, Inc. can conduct an on-site building inspection and evaluation and identify all critical infrastructure including water shut-off valves, electrical panels, stairwells, elevators, exits, and other pertinent information that can be useful during a disaster. Keep important papers and valuables in a safe, dry place. Gather supplies in case of a storm, strengthen your home against damage, and review your insurance coverages.
Addressing Commercial Water Damage In Orlando
The best way to protect your business for commercial water damage is to work with experts:
- Educate yourself about flood insurance benefits, costs, and options through your insurance agent.
- Take steps now so you can quickly resume operations should a flood or other hazard damage your property. Contact Unlimited Restoration for flood preparation planning.
Should you suffer damage, Unlimited Restoration’s dedicated professionals have extensive construction experience ready to guide you through and oversee every aspect of reconstruction following disaster recovery in the Carolinas and Florida Panhandle. URI first responders are trained and experienced in damage mitigation and protection of structures and property. Unlimited Restoration, Inc. can help you at 888-753-7587 or visit urinow.com to learn more about preventing and recovering from water damage.