Posts Tagged fema

White Paper- ICFs Offer Shelter From the Storm

News of natural disasters appear almost daily in the media. While some events, such as floods and earthquakes, are restricted within certain geographic regions, wind storms respect no such bounds. Some areas of the country are more prone to tornadoes or hurricanes, but high wind gusts can hit anywhere. The potential for hurricane damage increases as more and more people willingly accept or ignore the associated risk of living in coastal areas. Yet, year after year, houses are demolished, and people lose their lives. The challenge is to rebuild in a way that will best weather the next storm, and

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NBC Bank Utilizes BuildBlocks ICF Disaster Resistance Capabilities

NBC Bank Utilizes BuildBlock ICF’s Disaster Resistance Capabilities for security of important documents and equipment.  As far as banks go, this is one of the most energy-efficient banks in Oklahoma. Banks are high traffic, and considerations for foot traffic must be accounted for in the design. ICFs coupled with the spray foam roof insulation lower the utility costs by more than 40%. This project was designed to blend into the surrounding residential area. The owners chose ICF because this branch was outfitted with a data center housing networking and computing infrastructure utilized by the bank.  This room had to be protected from the

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BuildBlock ICF Above Ground Safe Rooms

Tornado season is upon us, and once again, we in the Midwest and Southeast will see thunderstorms forming and rolling across the plains, and we will look up and wonder if that is just a low hanging cloud, or something more ominous. Safety is of primary concern during a tornado.  It is an immensely powerful, destructive force, which can devastate anything in its path. Historically we in the plains states have been told to move to the middle of your home and either open or close windows depending on who you have listened to.  If you had the luxury of

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Asked & Answered: What is the expected lifetime of the expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam?

Asked-&-Answered

Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) is essentially inert. There have been multiple studies of EPS in the soil for 15 to 30 years demonstrating only minor degradation of the EPS foam. EPS foam is expanded using steam. It is the entrained air that provide the insulation value in the material. EPS is a plastic and aside from contact with hydrocarbons or exposure to UV from sunlight, it is relatively unaffected by other naturally degrading processes. Geofoam® placed in the ground for decades increased its compression resistance (strength). The lifespan of EPS is long, potentially unlimited. Most of the testing has involved placing

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BuildBlock FieldNotes – 006 ICF Safe Rooms

FieldNotes 006 ICF Safe Rooms

We’ve all seen what happens on the news when disaster strikes: shattered homes and lives after the tornado or hurricane, smoking ash after the wildfire, and collapsed rubble after the earthquake. Disasters happen when we least expect them,but are something we need to be prepared for. We wear seat belts and have airbags because we have car accidents.  Our buildings have smoke alarms and sprinkler systems because we have fire.  We keep weather radios and have radar to keep us aware of severe weather. The majority of residential homes in the US are built out of wood.  There is a better way

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Asked & Answered: What is the Prescriptive Method and why do we talk about it?

Asked-&-Answered

What is the Prescriptive Method? The Prescriptive Method for Insulating Concrete Forms in Residential Construction is the accepted method for installation, general engineering, and standard for ICF home design. The Prescriptive Method for Insulating Concrete Forms in Residential Construction is a document, originally drafted by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which has been incorporated into the International Residential Code (IRC, Section R611) and which gives a general engineering design for use with ICF, within the most common home sizes. The Prescriptive Method provides engineering tables showing reinforcement specifications for common wall heights and openings, as well as

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Educare Childcare & After School Program Building 75+ Person Safe Room & Media Class Room in Perkins, OK

Perkins Safe Room Stacked Ready for Pour

Educare Childcare & After School Program Building 75+ Person Safe Room & Media Class Room in Perkins, OK Educare child care is using BuildBlock ICFs to build EF5 multi-purpose safe room tornado shelter for children and staff at First United Methodist Church in Perkins, OK. (Oklahoma City, OK, June 12, 2014) Educare child care and after school program located at the First United Methodist Church in Perkins, OK is building an EF5 FEMA compliant safe room and multi-purpose media room for their 75 students and 18 staff members using BuildBlock Insulating Concrete Forms (ICFs). The Educare Board decided build this

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Video: Perkins Educare Safe Room Part 2

Perkins Educare Safe Room Construction continues on the Educare safe room in Perkins. While the kids had a blast helping stack the first two courses of block  Educare Director Betty Weems and James Ladwig, Ladwig Construction discuss the challenges of the project and their hopes for the future. Look for more updates as progress continues.  

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Video: BuildBlock Helps Build 75+ Person Educare Safe Room Part 1

Oklahoma has been in the middle of  “Tornado Alley” since it was first defined in the early 1950s. We see our share of tornadoes and strong storms throughout the year. In May 2013 devastating tornadoes hit the community of Moore, Oklahoma and took the lives of several children who were sheltered at their elementary school. The community of Perkins is about 45 minutes northeast of Oklahoma City and home to some BuildBlock staff. Their children attend Educare a 75 person early childhood day care and after school program housed at the First United Methodist Church in Perkins, Oklahoma. In 2013 they

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