Severe weather events can happen in a flash and cause major damage to a construction site, which can lead to delays and thousands of dollars in damages. Taking steps to protect your site from flooding can improve safety conditions and protect your company from potential losses.
Flood Resistant Construction Techniques
A good technique to prevent flooding from industrial sources is to deploy water management devices that can detect the flow of water. These can notify you when a leak has occurred from a broken water main or pipe. In some cases, these devices can send a signal to have the source of the leaking water shut off. They should be installed near water tanks, in low-elevated parts of the site, and near electrical equipment.
Flood Resistant Building Materials
Depending on the material, flooding can cause structural damage that can lead to significant problems even years down the road. If you are working in an area where there is a potential flood risk, choosing flood-resistant building materials is not only smart but is the responsible choice. Using these materials will not guarantee that your site won’t sustain any damages, and some amount of repairs may still need to be conducted to ensure the building is not adversely affected.
- Pressure Treated Wood
- Cold-Formed Steel
Temporary Weather Protection for Construction
It is nearly impossible to fully protect your construction site from adverse weather conditions. Some wind, rain, or snow will inevitably come into contact with your site. But you can keep the worst of it away from your site by using materials that can be set up quickly and at a low cost.
Contractors often use reinforced sheeting, tarps, fabrics, or even a temporary roof or scaffolding system to protect their sites from rain or snow. This can prevent equipment and materials from becoming covered with water or ice that could make them unsafe or temporarily unusable.
If you need to protect your site from a flooding situation, TrapBags can build a strong barrier that will keep the floodwaters at bay. TrapBags are often used as seawalls and levees to prevent overflowing rivers from flooding populated areas. They are also deployed on hillsides or in mountainous areas to protect against mudslides.
Many construction agencies like to have TrapBags on hand in case of emergencies. They can be conveniently stored without taking up space before they are used and deployed within a matter of hours. Once the danger of flooding has passed, TrapBags can be emptied and removed even faster than they were deployed.
Developing a Construction Inclement Weather Policy
At most, you will have just days to prepare for a severe weather emergency. In some cases, you may only have a matter of hours. Every minute counts when the weather forecasts turn dark, which is why it is essential to have an inclement weather policy created in advance for your construction site. Depending on your location, you may also want to have a specific construction site hurricane preparedness plan as well.
Your plan should have clear instructions and responsibilities for each worker at the site. This will mitigate confusion and conflict when the unexpected arises. Employees should be aware of the inclement weather policy and have a copy available for review.
Your inclement weather policy doesn’t have to be restricted to how the construction site should be managed and protected. It can also have basic information on how notifications, schedule changes, and payments will be conducted in the case of a severe storm.
Inclement weather policies should be updated for each project, and should even be revised as the project continues. The tasks that need to be completed in the face of a severe flooding event will look quite different between the early stages of a project and the final stages.
One of the most important parts of a construction emergency action plan is a relocation plan. This tells employees a safe place they can go to wait out the storm. If the location is on another property or in another building, the plan should be worked out in advance with the owner or manager of the property. They should be contacted again when a storm is forecasted to confirm that there won’t be any issues with taking shelter at the site.
However, sometimes storms can strike quickly, so it is important to have an emergency kit available in case workers can’t get to the relocation site. It should include a first-aid kit, flashlights, batteries, and potentially some food items.
Having a site checklist with clearly outlined instructions and steps to be completed before a storm hits will keep your crews organized when severe weather arises. Your site checklist should include a list of all equipment and materials that need to be put away and tied down. Any windows, doors, unfinished roofs, or other fragile parts of the site should also be protected.
The list should also include every utility that needs to be turned off and the contact information for the people who can order them to be shut off. If possible, the crew should take down and remove temporary structures, portable bathrooms, and dumpsters that could be destroyed or blown away. Fuel tanks or chemicals should be removed from the scene to prevent leaks or fires.
Another important step is to document the construction site both before and after the storm. Pictures and video of the site should be taken to prove that damage was caused by the storm and not by construction crews beforehand. This can be used to settle disputes later on down the line, both with insurance companies and with clients.
A key component of the list should be a flood prevention strategy. This will include making sure that proper drainage can take place, including the removal of all debris that could block it. Flood prevention barriers should also be deployed to prevent water damage. TrapBags can be installed around specifically vulnerable areas of the construction site, or even the entire site itself.
How TrapBag Can Help
The flexible and convenient design of TrapBags allows construction workers to quickly design and set up a barrier around their construction site.
In addition to protecting your construction site from flooding, TrapBags can also protect the surrounding area in cases of an accident at the construction site. They can contain spilled chemicals or prevent broken flooding from broken water mains from damaging nearby buildings and infrastructure.
Use TrapBag to Protect Your Site
TrapBags are a fast, affordable, and intuitive way to protect your construction site from flooding. Reach out to our staff to start planning your flood prevention system.