During my third visit to Inspect homes damaged by Hurricane – Superstorm Sandy, I was offered the opportunity to tour Bay Head, New Jersey. Just a mile south of my previous inspection visit to Point Pleasant, I was completely taken back by the devastating winds and surge the powerful storm left behind.
Once past the National Guard thanks to special credentials, what I witnessed was the most devastating sights in my career to date. The vast destruction was a study like no other of its kind, encompassing miles of damage far greater than I experienced from my inspections after Hurricane Andrew, far more wind damage than all of hundreds of Hurricane Wilma inspections, much more significant water & surge damage than any of Hurricane Katrina inspections, more signs of fatigue and driving rain than Ike, Frances, Jean, Charlie, Rita, and others of their kind. Adding the new element of freezing temperatures and expanding ice, and potentially crushing snow now leaves a trail of defects, both visible and latent like no other storm to date.
Why This Was So Important
Inspecting wind damage of failed roofs, windows, siding, framing, and other building components in Bay Head provides a 100% failure benchmark, offering valuable clues for other inspections that might not readily show signs of damage in neighboring areas. It makes this storm very real, impacting buildings in ways many local inspecting engineers and unfamiliar insurance property adjusters have yet to understand. It makes our work here all the more valuable and necessary as we forge ahead.
I’ll be returning for my 4th trip next week, making my way from Atlantic City to New York to see more of Sandy’s damage across the coast, inspecting many impacted areas along the way, and comparing them relative to ‘ground zero’. In the meanwhile, here are some photographs of Bay Head to offer some perspective of what I experienced. Take a close look, there’s quite a bit to take in.
Beyond The Checkpoint: Sandy Damage
Sandy Damage: Taking the Information Back to Nearby Areas
Being able to study failure modes in Bay Head NJ provided valuable clues as to why siding, roofing, windows, and the overall structure failed or are now in a state of ‘almost failed’, now fatigued, compromised, and no longer water resistant as before the storm in neighboring areas. This house was obvious, others inspected showed lesser signs of failure not so obvious to others.
We’ll be placing full time staff up there after my tour next week so there will be a lot more to follow.