Hurricane Ike Investigation

For Immediate Release:

Powder Springs, GA — Sep 27, 2008 at 12:00 am

RICOWI Investigates Hurricane Ike
RICOWI deployed seven four-member teams to Houston, TX to conduct roofing investigations of the hurricane stricken area immediately after Hurricane Ike make landfall at 2:10 a.m. (CDT) September 13, 2008 at Galveston, TX. The teams consisted of wind engineers, roofing material specialists, insurance analysts, structural engineers and roofing consultants that were trained in wind issues by a number of the country’s leading scientists and others qualified in examining wind damage to roofing systems. 
The RICOWI Wind Investigation Program’s (WIP) protocol states that a deployment event is a hurricane with a wind speed of 95 mph (1 minute sustained), or greater, that makes landfall in a populated area in the continental US.   Ike was a strong category 2 hurricane and had winds in several areas that met this criteria. As a result of the storm surge and the massive destruction, Galveston Island and other coastal areas were not investigated.
Logistics Team members Robb Smith, John Goveia, Phil Mayfield and Paul Riesebieter were in the damage area the day after landfall to evaluate the type and extent of damage.  Following an aerial surveillance the sites were selected for detailed investigation.
The teams and ground coordination crew conducted investigations on all types of roofing systems from September 18-22nd.  RICOWI’s media spokesman, Dave Roodvoets, said “Ike’s long duration and strength inland presented different investigation opportunities. It was clear that the newer building codes and greater enforcement resulted in reduced roof system damage. Designs that did not meet manufacturers’ requirements and/or 2003-2006 building codes, as well as workmanship errors, resulted in damage that could have been prevented.”  Many of the types of damage reported in previous RICOWI hurricane investigations were also found in the Ike damage areas.
A general overview of the investigations will be presented at RICOWI’s October 7th roofing seminar in Charleston, SC (see website for details). The final report will be available at RICOWI’s spring 2009 seminar in Dallas, TX.
RICOWI is a nonprofit organization comprised of all of the major roofing associations and includes members of academia, educational and testing facilities and others involved in the science of roofing.  For further information contact RICOWI's Executive Director, Patty Wood-Shields: Phone 770-726-7194; Email or log on to RICOWI's website:


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