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Spring 2018 Events

RICOWI Sponsoring Organizations and Affiliate Members are pleased to invite you to join us for the spring 2018 events in Houston, Texas.

Harvey, Irma, and RICOWI
Phil Mayfield / PSM Consultants
David Roodvoets / DLR Consulting

In the aftermath of two Category 4 storms, affecting millions and causing hundreds of billions in damage, many in the roofing industry, as well as fellow RICOWI members, want to know how RICOWI responded to hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

RICOWI's primary focus is to perform timely investigations of high-impact storms. The key word is 'timely.' Quick response to a major weather event is needed to learn firsthand how buildings are damaged by violent weather. By inspecting structures soon after storms, investigators can more easily differentiate between old and new damage.

An additional focus for deployment is significant and widespread damage accompanying the storm, due to the limitations of both budget and volunteers' time commitment (4-5 days) involved in an investigation. Because members volunteer their time and pay their own expenses, only the most severe events qualify for event mobilization.

RICOWI team members started making tentative plans for deployment as Hurricane Harvey moved into the Gulf of Mexico, with dire projections of massive damage from this monster storm. The only question was not if we would mobilize, but when and where. Even though Harvey contained ferocious winds, however, the significant wind damage was very limited, and didn't justify deployment.

On the heels of Harvey came Hurricane Irma, which appeared to be potentially more destructive than Hurricane Andrew (August, 1992). Those warnings appeared to be true, as Irma blew through Puerto Rico, devastating the island with category five winds. Due to its circular path, which ultimately caused the storm to drift northeastward, parallel to the coast of the Florida Keys, buildings were spared the type of damage seen in Puerto Rico and Cuba. As was true of Harvey, when Irma moved onto the mainland, the most significant damage was from flooding.

Despite not having the widespread wind damage necessary for RICOWI mobilization, a small group of members opted to conduct a mini-deployment. Those investigators arrived in the Tampa-Fort Myers area on October 30th and 31st and separated into three teams of four, focusing on those areas, as well as Marco Island, Florida City, and the Keys. Even seven weeks after Irma, there was sufficient visible wind damage to keep these dozen investigators occupied for three days just prior to the fall RICOWI meetings in Miami.

The Irma investigators found extensive damage to some roofs, while other nearby structures seemed untouched. We look forward to sharing those experiences and conclusions at the spring RICOWI meetings in Houston.

Air Barriers - Don't Forget the Roof
Laverne Dalgleish / Air Barrier Association of America

A lot of emphasis has been put on installing air barriers into wall assemblies, but you need to remember that a building has six sides. The importance of an air barrier in every building assembly is starting to be recognized as being important – and it's not just energy. The main reason you would install an air barrier in a building is not energy savings. Air barriers impact how every one of the building assemblies perform. This presentation will cover the impact the air barrier has on a building including the role of an air barrier in a roof assembly.

Learning Objectives:

  1. The science behind air barriers
  2. The reasons to use an air barrier in a building
  3. The impact of an air barrier in a roof
  4. How tight can we make our buildings

The Science of Hurricanes and a Review of the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season
Dan Reilly / National Weather Service: Houston/Galveston

The 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season was extremely active with 17 named storms, 10 of which were hurricanes with 6 major hurricanes (defined as cat 3+ on the Saffir Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale). In this presentation the basic science of hurricane formation, intensity and movement will be presented. The structure of a typical hurricane will be described along with the variability between storms. The main hurricane hazards, including damaging winds, flooding rains, storm surge and tornadoes will be described.

The 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season will then be reviewed. Examples from the 2017 season will be shown to illustrate various aspects of the science and how the hurricane hazards are distributed. Will also address the question of whether storms like these can be attributed to climate change and whether this active season signals more active years to come.

Hurricane Maria – Tips for Investigating Not So Obvious Wind Damage
Philip Dregger / Technical Roof Services

When a roof covering is hanging off the edge of a building, you don't need a rocket scientist to tell you it has been damaged by wind. But what about a roof that is still in place but has a few holes and funny looking "humps"? Is it wind damaged and, perhaps more importantly, how extensive is the wind damage?

This presentation will review several roofs in Puerto Rico where wind damage was not so obvious but more extensive than originally thought.

Learning Objectives – By the end of this presentation, attendees will understand the following:

  • Types of roof wind damage (direct and indirect).
  • Tell-tell signs of not-so-obvious wind damage.
  • Why overlay roofs are prone to extensive "indirect" wind damage.
  • Tips for the effective use of electronic moisture meters.
  • The value of test cuts and electrical resistance moisture probe readings.
  • Useful reference documents in judging how wet is wet.
  • The presenter's opinions regarding roof assemblies especially resistant to hurricane wind damage.

Hurricane Maria (overview)
  • Landfall date, time, location
  • Storm track
  • Max wind speeds
  • Types of Roof Wind Damage – Obvious and Not-So-Obvious

Investigator's Tool-Box
  • Aerial Photos (Google Earth Pro, 2D, 3D), pre-storm conditions, facilitate recording field notes.
  • First-responder observations, photos (toppled units, debris).
  • Occupant information about roof/ceiling leaks, especially after temporary repairs.
  • Electronic (impedance) moisture meters (e.g., Tramex Leak Seeker, Tramex Deck Scanner)
  • Test cuts and electrical resistance probes (e.g., Delmhorst BD-2100)
  • Working understanding of roof construction and wind loads.

Case Histories – Investigations on four roofs will be reviewed to illustrate application of the above concepts

Hurricane Maria - It's the Little Things That Caused the Most Damage
Robert Boessen / NWB, Inc.

"Maria", the strongest hurricane to hit Puerto Rico in almost 90 years tore across the entire island of 3.4 million people.

Hurricane Maria, with sustained winds of 155 mph at landfall; a strong Category 4 storm and nearly a Category 5 — Maria was so powerful that it disabled radar, weather stations and cell towers across Puerto Rico, leaving an information vacuum in which officials could only speculate about property damage, injuries or deaths. As the storm churned slowly across Puerto Rico, it shut down the power grid, tore roofs off, knocked down cell phone towers, snapped trees and unleashed heavy flooding as it dumped at least 18 inches of rain during and in the aftermath of the storm event.

Thirty-seven (37) days after "Maria" made landfall, the author of this presentation received a call from an associate that was in Puerto Rico helping with the recovery. He suggested that his client's Engineer was in the need of a Registered Roof Consultant, would I be available? If interested, it would be understood, that I should be prepared to share a room with 3 other folks, as hotel rooms were at a premium! To make a long story short, a four (4) day assignment evolved into becoming part of a six (6) man assessment team, commissioned with findings and observations of 11 sites, totaling 4.5 MIL plus square feet of roof footprint. The roof covering ran the gamut; Clay Tile, Metal Tile, BUR & Gravel, Smooth Mod Bit, Granular Mod Bit and Single ply to name a few. While all systems suffered some degree of observable wind damage, no one system received more damage than the collected collateral damage as the result of the "Little Things". This presentation will address those "Little Things" that overall, claimed a minimum of 50% of damages as the result of the storm event.

Event Agenda
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
5:00pm - 6:00pmConference Committee Meeting
5:00pm - 6:00pmMembership Committee Meeting
6:30pm - 9:30pmOptional Dinner Gathering
Thursday, March 22, 2018
7:30am - 8:30amRegistration & Continental Breakfast
8:30am - 8:45amOpening Remarks
Rick Olson / Chairman, RICOWI, Inc.
8:45am - 9:45amHarvey, Irma, and RICOWI
Phil Mayfield / PSM Consultants
David Roodvoets / DLR Consulting
9:45am - 10:00amBreak
10:00am - 11:30amAir Barriers - Don't Forget the Roof
Laverne Dalgleish / Air Barrier Association of America
11:30am - 12:30pmLunch
12:30pm - 1:30pmThe Science of Hurricanes and a Review of the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season
Dan Reilly / National Weather Service: Houston/Galveston
1:30pm - 2:30pmHurricane Maria – Tips for Investigating Not So Obvious Wind Damage
Phil Dregger / Technical Roof Services
2:30pm - 2:45pmBreak
2:45pm - 3:45pmHurricane Maria - It's the Little Things That Caused the Most Damage
Robert Boessen / NWB, Inc.
3:45pmClosing Remarks
6:30pm - 9:30pmOptional Dinner Gathering
Friday, March 23, 2018
7:30am - 8:30amMoisture Control/Green Committee Meeting
8:45am - 9:45amHail & Wind Investigation Committees
10:00am - 11:00amCode Committee
11:15am - 12:15pmUnderlayment Committee
12:15pm - 1:15pmLunch on own
1:45pm - 2:45pmRICOWI Annual General Meeting
2:45pm - 4:15pmMembership Meeting
4:30pm - 6:00pmRICOWI Board of Directors Meeting
7:00pm - 9:00pmOptional Group Dinner Gathering
Saturday, March 24, 2018
OptionalLet us know if you are interested in joining the Ladies of RICOWI for shopping. You are also invited to join RCI's activities!

Registration Forms and Information
Download a registration form ( .pdf )
Marriott Marquis Houston
Spring Seminar Flyer
Registration Information

Seminar Fees
Fee (US $) Early Registration After February 20th
Member $300.00 $325.00
Non-Member $400.00 $425.00

Cancellations after February 20, 2018 are subject to $75.00 fee; no shows are non-refundable.

Additional Information

For additional information, or if you are interested in sponsorship opportunities, contact RICOWI's Executive Director, Joan Cook at 330-671-4569 or email: jcook@ricowi.com.

Hotel Information

Marriott Marquis Houston
1777 Walker Street
Houston, TX 77010

Online or call 1-877-688-4323
Refer to the RCI International Convention & Trade Show

Reserve through February 23, 2018 to get the group rate of $205 (single/double + taxes and fees).

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