Owning a business involves many moving parts, and most business owners don’t think about the structure of their building, including the roof, until a problem occurs. As many business owners can attest, owning a business in a coastal town comes with its own set of challenges, perhaps the most prominent being the risk of hurricanes. Hurricanes can range from a strong thunderstorm to a complete devastation of everything in its path. Fortunately, the Sarasota & Bradenton area has been lucky for several decades when it comes to avoiding the worst that hurricanes can potentially bring.
In any case, summer brings weather that is meant to be taken seriously, and that includes securing your commercial roof in preparation for the wind, rain and strength of these storms. This guide is meant to act as a checklist to ensure you don’t miss any steps in the process of preparing your commercial roof for hurricane season.
First and foremost, it is crucial to have an established plan in place prior to hurricane season. Your plan should include making sure that your employees are informed of the plan and that they understand it and their part in it, as well as keeping your finger on the pulse of the weather every day of hurricane season. . Weather patterns tend to change quickly and in some cases, drastically. The sooner you’re aware of a potential weather event, the more well-prepared you can be.
When the storm has passed, carefully assess the inside and outside of the building for any damage that may have been sustained to your commercial roof.
Assess the interior ceilings. If any water was able to penetrate the roof, move any items that could be damaged by the water to safety and take note of where the water came in.
Document any and all damage. Video record of your walkthrough, noting any new damage caused by the storm. Take photos of the damage, as well, as these will be required by the insurance company.
Call your insurance agent. If damage is found, file a claim with your insurance agency as soon as possible. Have your policy handy as well as your video and photo evidence of sustained damage.
Call all other necessary service providers. Contact your roofer to assess the roof and to fix the damage if any was incurred. You may need to contact a water remediation company, the local electric company, property insurance (for damaged items) and/or an HVAC company to get your business back up and running.
The process of storm preparation can be overwhelming, but taking the necessary steps ahead of time will make it much less so. Call AKVM for commercial roof inspections, repairs or replacement, as well as preventative maintenance to minimize the impact of weather conditions on your business.