Substantial Florida Building Code Changes, Hurricane Damage Analysis to be Reviewed at Florida Building Commission June 27 Meeting

Jun 21, 2017


What could be substantial legislative changes to the Florida Building Code pending Governor Rick Scott’s action, along with the final draft of an extensive analysis of building damage caused during the 2016 Hurricane Season will be reviewed during the upcoming June 27, 2017 meeting of the Florida Building Commission (“FBC”).

To access the agenda, Web teleconferencing participation and meeting materials, click here.

Governor Scott has not yet acted on HB 1021, which has drawn criticism from the insurance industry and Florida’s Emergency Management Director

At the meeting, the FBC will review a list of “Code Fixes” that would be effected by HB 1021 should it become law on July 1, 2017. 

To view a brief summary of HB 1021, click here.  A longer summary is attached for review.

To view the FBC’s Florida Building Code HB 1021 “fixes” summary, click here.

The aforementioned building damage report on the June 27 agenda explains that, when Hurricane Matthew formed in the Caribbean in late September 2016, the National Hurricane Center monitored its movement and eventually issued a warning to residents along Florida’s east coast to prepare for the imminent landfall of a Category 3 hurricane.  That warning triggered the Florida Building Commission to request mobilization of the Florida Coastal Monitoring Program to conduct surveys on buildings affected by extreme winds.

The resulting report noted that homeowners living in newer (post-2001) houses were three times more likely to say they suffered little or no damage, (up to $5,000), versus homeowners living in older houses before adoption of the 2001 Florida Building Code.  Losses in the surveyed area (Flagler County) ranged from $1,000 to $200,000.  Homeowners of newer houses were also more likely to understand which features of their homes contributed to its improved wind-resistant performance.  Twenty-nine percent of the post-2001 homeowners stated that building codes were one such important feature.  In both pre- and post-2001 Florida Building Code groups, damage to asphalt shingle roofing systems was the main source of damage reported by over 50 percent of respondents.

Surveyors identified wind damage among roofs of 366 structures located immediately adjacent to the main coastal road (Highway A1A), which was unsheltered and would have experienced the highest winds.  As expected, newer houses suffered less damage.  For the strip of buildings along the coast, 38 percent of the pre-2001 Florida Building Code buildings had visible damage, compared with just 12 percent of the post-2001 buildings.

To view the final draft of the report, which is also attached, click here.



Should you have any questions or comments, please contact Colodny Fass.




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