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Is My Condo Building Safe?

[fa icon="calendar'] Nov 16, 2021 9:23:39 AM / by Taylor James Pierce, RA, NCARB, LEED AP

If your condominium was built to code, even older building codes, it is likely a safe building. Like most things, however, as they age, buildings need maintenance and occasional repairs to ensure they remain safe and sound, including bringing them up to new code standards in some cases. That is where concern should lie—checking for issues that may make the building, or parts of it, unsafe.

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CCA opens new office in Florida

[fa icon="calendar'] Oct 14, 2021 12:15:00 AM / by Guest post

We are excited to announce the opening of CCA’s newest office in Ft. Lauderdale to service our clients in Florida and beyond. With its expanding population (14.6% growth in the last decade, double the rate of the US overall) and thriving economy, the time was right to extend our presence in Florida, adding this office to complement our existing presence in Orlando.

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Effects of building movement on interior finishes

[fa icon="calendar'] Oct 7, 2021 1:55:33 PM / by Kenneth R Quigley, PE

Buildings are designed to withstand a certain level of expected forces, like gravity and wind, based on their location and function. Forces such as strong winds, earthquakes, or explosions can cause a building to move beyond what the materials are designed to withstand, causing significant damage to the interior finishes of the structure, even without a breach of the building envelope. Knowing how these forces can impact your building are the first step to protecting them before the damage is caused, or repairing them afterward.

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Stabilization of construction costs after a hurricane

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 24, 2021 8:54:48 AM / by Peter A. Byrne, PE

As part of recovery after a hurricane, property owners must sift through the damages to their buildings and infrastructure, then begin clean-up and rebuilding. Once physical health and safety are assured, owners and the insurance companies providing coverage deal with the massive devastation, and that includes assessment and rebuild for each property damaged.

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Best available refuge: Protecting yourself when a tornado or hurricane hits

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 16, 2021 11:30:00 AM / by Greg Hoyt, PE

Tornados and hurricanes are dangerous, extreme wind events. Both types of storms are likely to happen in specific geographies—tornados in the central plains of the U.S. and hurricanes along the Atlantic seaboard and Gulf Coast. Yet these storms can and do happen in other areas.

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Structural performance during a tornado: What you need to know

[fa icon="calendar'] Sep 9, 2021 9:16:01 AM / by Greg Hoyt, PE

Statistically, there are few tornados above F2 on the Fujita scale (maximum wind speeds of 113-157 mph). This is a tremendous wind load to hit a structure and most buildings are not typically designed to survive those kinds of loads. The one good thing about tornados is that they are typically short-lived, on the ground only a few minutes, and averaging about 1,000 feet across. Regardless, the concentrated force of these rotating winds at that speed hitting the building for a short period can cause significant damage. Here, we will look at what happens to a structure when it is hit by a tornado.

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Responding to Catastrophes

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 17, 2021 6:30:00 AM / by Kenneth R Quigley, PE

Disaster can strike at any time—natural disasters like hurricanes, wild fires, earthquakes, tornadoes; and human-caused catastrophes like pipeline leaks, criminal acts, bridge or building collapses, or industrial, air, or rail accidents. After the initial emergency response, property owners and public officials turn their attention to restoring properties and restarting commerce. Business and property owners and their insurance companies want to know:

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Getting a building back to pre-storm condition: What to expect

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 27, 2021 10:30:44 AM / by Greg Hoyt, PE

Recovery after a hurricane or tornado is a multi-step process. After the storm has passed and it is safe to be back in the area, it is time for building owners, with the help of their insurance companies, to start the rebuilding process. There are several considerations in rebuilding structures to pre-storm condition, including assessing the damages, making repairs, and the associated costs.

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Four Greatest Risks of a Hurricane’s Impact on Buildings

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 16, 2021 8:19:49 AM / by Kenneth R Quigley, PE

Hurricanes can cause significant damage to structures in their path. A typical hurricane can span 25-150 miles, and typically involves winds of 74-157 mph. While tropical storm force winds can extend the width of the storm to 300 miles wide, the wind speed is highest near the center of the storm.

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A Structural Engineer’s Nightmare, Champlain Towers South

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 1, 2021 1:03:30 PM / by Kenneth R Quigley, PE

I am deeply saddened by the tragic news of the fatal collapse of Champlain Towers South Condominium in Surfside, Florida early Thursday morning. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. I hope for the safety of my Urban Search and Rescue friends and their success in finding miracles in the debris of the building.

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