Printer Friendly

EXPERTS CALL WINDOWS FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE AGAINST SEVERE STORM DAMAGE LAMINATED GLASS RECOMMENDED FOR HURRICANE PROTECTION

EXPERTS CALL WINDOWS FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE AGAINST SEVERE STORM DAMAGE
    LAMINATED GLASS RECOMMENDED FOR HURRICANE PROTECTION
    ST. LOUIS, Oct. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- When a hurricane strikes, the type of glass windows in homes and commercial buildings may be the deciding factor in whether a structure survives or is severely damaged.
    According to experts, glass windows and doors can be the weakest part of a building's exterior.  They say that laminated glass is the best type for protecting against internal pressurization, a process that can trigger the total destruction of homes and businesses during a hurricane.
    "When a window is hit with flying debris during a storm and breaks, hurricane winds can rush and expose the structure to stresses and forces that it was probably not designed to resist," explained Joel Zingeser, of Building Technology, Inc., an architectural consulting firm in Silver Spring, Md.  "That's why it is critical for a building to remain sealed to the outside pressure during a severe storm."
    The force can be powerful enough to severely damage or blow the roof off, along with trusses, shingles and sheathing.  Within moments, a total structural collapse can be triggered.
    Under present building codes, homes and commercial buildings are not required to withstand this kind of pressure.  "That's why it's so important to keep that hurricane out of the building, and why keeping glass windows in place is the first line of defense," said Dr. Joseph E. Minor, an internationally recognized wind engineering expert who has led investigations into more than 60 damaging storms around the world.
    When it comes to storm resistance, not all glass is created equal, according to the experts.  Laminated glass -- the kind used in car windshields -- consists of a plastic interlayer sandwiched between two sheets of glass.  It may crack when impacted but unlike ordinary annealed or tempered glass, it doesn't break into pieces because the glass fragments adhere to the plastic interlayer.  If properly secured, laminated glass is designed to remain in place in the window frame, preventing internal pressurization of the structure and damage from wind and rain.
    A number of studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of using laminated glass in severe windstorms, and have shown that externally applied films and masking tape commonly used by consumers are ineffective solutions that can cause the glass window to be pulled from its frame during a storm.
    Dr. Minor, who serves as chairman of the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Missouri-Rolla, describes laminated glass as the "best product for resisting missile impacts from high winds."  Dr. Minor, who recently toured the destruction caused by Hurricane Andrew in South Florida,
has studied hurricanes and other severe storms for over 20 years.   He specializes in understanding the effects of hurricanes and other severe storms on buildings.
    Although laminated glass costs slightly more than ordinary glass, installing laminated glass may raise the total cost of a new window by 10-20 percent -- a small, additional investment to protect a home's structural integrity.
    Zingeser noted that window shutters provide good storm protection but are only effective if someone is at home to put them in place. "Boarding up with plywood or aluminum panels in also good emergency protection," he added.  "But these may be difficult to install, particularly above the first floor, and like shutters, temporary panels require that one or more people be home to secure them."
    Besides windows, construction experts say that roof trusses and other internal bracing, shingles and siding are also potential storm trouble spots.  The failure of any of these systems can trigger a complete building collapse.  Homeowners should also remove or tie down loose items in their yard, such as lawn furniture, that could become airborne missiles during a storm.
    Experts also suggest that homeowners have an independent building inspector or insurance company inspect their property inside and out for storm resistance.
    To obtain free information about protecting your home or business against severe storm damage, write to: Hurricane Information, Department 204, 800 N. Lindbergh, St. Louis, Mo., 63167, or call 1-800-551-5971.
    -0-             10/01/92
    CONTACT:  Craig Kaminer or Randy Myers of Building Technology, Inc., 314-436-6565 CO:  BUILDING TECHNOLOGY, INC. IN:  CST ST:  MO -- NYFNS2 -- X838  10/01/92
COPYRIGHT 1992 PR Newswire Association LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 1, 1992
Words:700
Previous Article:HOUSEHOLD BATTERY ASSOCIATION OF EUROPE, JAPAN AND THE UNITED STATES AGREE ON COOPERATIVE PLAN TO STUDY BATTERY RECYCLING
Next Article:TELEPHONE COURTESIES IMPROVE CUSTOMER RELATIONS, HELP WITH INBOUND SALES CALLS
Topics:


Related Articles
INSURANCE COMMISSIONER ISSUES REMINDER TO DELAWAREANS TO REVIEW THEIR PROPERTY PROTECTION AND PREPAREDNESS PLANS
AFTER HURRICANE ANDREW: SPEEDING UP ECONOMIC RECOVERY
GOVERNOR'S EMERGENCY COMMAND CENTER: STRONGEST BUILDING PROTECTED WITH STATE-OF-THE-ART TECHNOLOGIES
Hurricane Damaged Homes and Businesses Can Be Strengthened When Making Repairs
Insurers Support Stronger Codes to Protect Southern Region from Windstorms
Statement From DuPont Glass Laminating Products on Hurricane Protection For Commercial and Residential Properties.
DuPont Expert Available for Comment on Latest Hurricane Protection Technologies as Hurricane Floyd Bears Down on Florida.
DuPont Expert Available for Comment on Latest Hurricane Protection Technologies As Tropical Storm Harvey Bears Down on Florida.
Hurricane Glass Shield, Inc.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2016 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters