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Active vs Passive Mitigation - FloodBreak®


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FloodBreak discusses the advantages of passive flood control measures - those which require no people or power to protect you during flood emergencies.

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Active vs Passive Mitigation - FloodBreak®

  1. 1. FloodBreak® Automatic Floodgates“Prevention Through Innovation”<br />
  2. 2. History:<br />Tropical Storm Allison arrived on June 2001 as a very rain swollen storm which stalled over Houston. 14.2” of rain fell in downtown Houston in 12 hours. <br /> The Texas Medical Center and downtown areas, with historical flooding a well known fact, are protected with available mitigation measures. Due to the amount of rain, and the fact most of the rain starting to fall on a Friday evening, many of these measures were not deployed, or failed to deploy due to the loss of electricity, causing 1.5 billion dollars in damage in the Medical Center alone. In Harris County the total was much larger…<br />Necessity IS the mother of all invention<br />
  3. 3. History:<br /> Major hospital system in the TMC floods in the second basement, which houses power distribution and other critical systems… It is protected by “flood logs”, installed after a major flood event in 1976... According to [Officer] Garcia, it took about ½ hour and two men to bolt and secure the logs in place…<br />“The water came so fast it was impossible to secure all of the logs,” Garcia said. “As soon as we secured the first log, the water began to rise above it. We tried a second, then a third. By the time we got to the fourth log, the water was above my thighs. I knew it was time to head for safety.” <br /> As Garcia ran for safety, he said he saw<br /> water rushing against the giant barriers<br /> and spewing through the cracks like a<br /> fountain…<br /> (FEMA)<br />Necessity IS the mother of all invention<br />
  4. 4. Active Mitigation Measures: Requires human intervention [or power] to operate properly and are usually less effective than passive mitigation measures. (FEMA)<br />Passive Mitigation Measures: Mitigation measures that require no human intervention [or power] to be effective and are usually more effective than active mitigation measures. (FEMA)<br />Due to potential access issues for personnel, passive measures are viewed as the more effective technique for flood control. (Texas Medical Center)<br />In addition, sufficient warning time must exist to successfully place [active] floodproofing components, such as removable flood shields or gates, if such components are to be included in the floodproofing design. (FEMA)<br />Active –vs- Passive<br />
  5. 5. The amount of time necessary to put human intervention flood proofing components in place will depend upon the number of components, their complexity, and the availability of personnel to place them. (FEMA)<br />Maintenance Cost: The long-term costs of maintaining the effectiveness of a given mitigation measure. Maintenance costs are especially important in determining the true value of a… mitigation project. (FEMA)<br />A Flood Emergency Operation Plan is an integral part of any building’s flood proofing design… (FEMA)<br />Cost – The Whole Picture<br />
  6. 6. Must include the following:<br />An established Chain of Command and responsibility…<br />…Personnel required to be at the building should have a planned and safe means of ingress…<br />A list of specific duties assigned… Locations of materials necessary to properly install (and operate) all floodproofign components…<br />An evacuation plan for all personnel… with duties for implementing the plan…<br />A periodic training and exercise program to keep personnel aware of their duties and responsibilities… Training drills held at least once a year and coordinated with community officials… Flood safety precautions should be repeated…<br /> (FEMA)<br />Flood Emergency Operation Plan<br />
  7. 7. Long-term maintenance of the Plan:<br />Before issuing the building permit, the community should require that the property owner sign an agreement stating that the plan will be adhered to…<br />…will continue regardless of changes in ownership…<br />…accomplished by appropriate deed restrictions…<br />Any lease agreement should also contain clear language stating the leaseholder’s responsibilities…<br /> (FEMA)<br />Flood Emergency Operation Plan (cont’d)<br />These are paper requirements that get lost in the file drawer…<br />Time and time again, active measures fail due to failures in training and planning…<br />
  8. 8. Passive Automatic Solutions<br />Passive solutions are defined as those which require no human intervention or power systems to operate.<br />Passive measures eliminate the risk of operations and human failure at the core.<br />Training time and funds are saved for other critical areas.<br />Primarily consisting of a visual inspection, maintenance is quick and easy and can be accomplished with simple hand tools. <br />A 100% passive, fully automatic system operates 24 hours per day, every day of the year, minimizing risk, eliminating human and power dependency, and providing the lowest possible long-term cost.<br />
  9. 9. Passive Automatic Solutions<br />A small number of vendors have recognized the need for truly passive solutions for flood proofing of buildings, campuses, and neighborhoods.<br />These vendors are rapidly changing the model – you can get the benefits of passive protection without a bigger “bump in the road”.<br />PASSIVE PROTECTION – In analysis and in reality, there is no compare when it comes to 24x7 protection, no matter the conditions. <br />
  10. 10. FloodBreak<br />
  11. 11. FloodBreak<br />FloodBreak uses the incredible power of hydrostatic pressure to deploy the flood gates in virtually any vulnerable flood path. <br />Since the gates are permanently installed in vulnerable flood paths, and the gates do not deploy without flood waters, you can have 24/7 access to your facility without disruption.<br />Long-term training and maintenance is minimized. FloodBreak’s solutions are designed to be installed… and forgotten…<br />
  12. 12. How It Works<br />The design of the floodgate is built around the physics of hydrostatic pressure – in other words, it floats. <br />When water rises and approaches the entrance, the floodgate floats and rotates upwards. <br />The higher the water rises, the higher the gate rises in front of it. The hydrostatic pressure of the backed-up floodwater raises the barrier and activates the self-sealing rubber flange. The water is effectively working against itself.<br />Once a flood has begun, the barrier is held shut by the water, and as the water recedes, the floodgate returns to its lowered position.<br />
  13. 13. FloodBreak in Action<br />Apartment Garage<br />Great Neck, NY<br />Medical Center<br />Pasadena, TX<br />
  14. 14. The FloodBreak Automatic Floodgate can be retrofitted or planned into any project.<br />The system “disappears” into the building façade, ready to automatically protect 24x7!<br />Virtually Any Vulnerable Flood Path<br />Private Residence<br />Kenilworth, IL<br />
  15. 15. FloodBreak is a single source for all your mitigation needs, including complex campuses. Our products can protect any vulnerable path, every location, shape and size. Fully passive, fully automatic, 24x7.<br />Campus-Wide, Many Applications<br />Building Entries<br />Pedestrian Areas<br />Stairwells<br />Underground Rooms<br />Parking Areas<br />Loading Docks<br />
  16. 16. The Floodbreak Vehicle Gate is a fully-engineered system which will automatically block entrances from street-level flooding . With only a single moving part,  and rated for HSM-20 loads, the system requires minimal maintenance and (like all FloodbreakAutogate products) no people or power to activate. <br />Types of uses:<br /> - Driveways<br /> - Garage Ramps<br /> - Loading Docks<br /> - Equipment Bays<br />Vehicle Gate<br />Medical Center<br />Houston, TX<br />
  17. 17. Pedestrian Gate<br />The FloodBreak Pedestrian Gate is a fully-engineered system which will automatically block entrances from street-level flooding with zero impact on pedestrian traffic in the down position. Like all FloodBreak products there is no need for people or power to activate the gate. Furthermore, the system can be covered with a variety of materials, including carpet, pavers, or tile, rendering it virtually invisible. <br />Types of uses:<br /> - Doorways<br /> - Entrance Foyers<br /> - Stairwells<br /> - Elevator Lobbies<br />Medical Center<br />Houston, TX<br />
  18. 18. In addition to meeting HSM-20 specifications for vehicle loads, the FloodBreak Roadway Gate is specially coated for extreme wear conditions and is designed for long service life with heavy safety factors in the most demanding environments. It has become a practical fiscal solution for communities seeking to extend, raise, or re-certify their community’s levee systems.<br />Types of uses:<br /> - Levee Crossings<br /> - Subdivisions<br /> - Bridges<br /> - Campuses<br />Roadway Gate<br />Levee Crossing<br />Sugar Land, TX<br />
  19. 19. Roadway Gate - Levees<br />With the recent increase in levee recertification projects, FloodBreak has emerged as a cost-effective solution for bridges, roads, and other levee crossings. Compared to the cost of raising several lane-miles of road, and considering the potential issues with viewshed obstructions at critical junctions, FloodBreak provides a long-term, highly effective answer.<br />Border Crossing<br />Ft. Hancock, TX<br />
  20. 20. The Floodbreak Vent Shaft System is a unique solution for protecting underground tunnels and rooms with vertical vents. The system is designed to fit underneath street-level vent gratings with no disruption. When the street floods, the system automatically closes and stops the water from pouring through the vent grate and damaging sensitive underground equipment such as transformers, power equipment, or transportation systems. <br />Types of uses:<br /> - Subway Systems<br /> - Facility Rooms<br /> - Transformer Bays<br />Vent Shaft System<br />New York Subway System<br />Manhattan, NY<br />
  21. 21. The versatility of the FloodBreak concept has allowed us to create fully passive, 100% automatic solutions for each of our customers’ flood problems.<br />In addition to our standard applications, we have also developed a number of custom solutions for specialty applications and regularly work with customers on unique flood problems.<br />Our portfolio includes solutions for window vent panels, riverine levees, seawalls and bulkheads, and drainage/weir systems.<br />Product Versatility<br />
  22. 22. Engineering and Shop Drawings<br />Each and every FloodBreak system comes with a comprehensive engineering report stamped by a certified, independent, third-party engineer who specializes in hydrodynamic forces and offshore structures.<br />
  23. 23. We provide the customer and their design team with support throughout the entire project, including assisting the design team in the development of project drawings, pre-installation site inspection and solutions concepting, working with contractors in the installation process, and training operations personnel in maintenance and operation of the system.<br />Installation and Contractor Support<br />
  24. 24. Maintenance and Warranty<br />Floodbreak's products are engineered for decades of service life in demanding outdoor environments. We're built to last year-in, year-out, no matter the weather or the conditions. <br />Maintenance is minimal and can be performed with simple tools. Our products are built with corrosion, freezing, heat, salts, chemical exposure, and other extreme conditions in mind. <br />We can also customize our materials to suit your needs. We welcome inquiries about existing installations and customization capabilities.<br />ALL FloodBreak products come with a one-year warranty. We also offer an extended plan which provides maintenance and full warranty on an renewable annual basis.<br />
  25. 25. Why does it float?<br /> -The gate is actually a buoyant panel constructed of hollow aluminum extrusions. The extrusions are designed to be structural while also providing excellent flotation. Additionally, the extrusions are chambered so that even if an area of the panel is compromised, the overall panel will still float. This is similar to the design of a ship’s hull, where bulkheads protect the ship even if the hull is locally damaged.<br />How are these gates different from other gates that have been around for so long?<br /> - FloodBreak® has revolutionized flood mitigation and dry floodproofing. We are setting a new standard in that the gates are “passive”, therefore no one needs to be present to deploy the gates, and that is a huge step in protecting the assets that are so vulnerable.<br />Does the gate need sidewalls?<br /> - Yes, the system needs to have sidewalls that are as tall as the gates are when they are in the up (deployed) position. Without the sidewalls, the flood water would simply go around the gate.<br />Does the gate have to be in the 90 degree, fully upright position to stop the flood?<br /> - The FloodBreak system will rise with the flood, from initial activation all the way to the full deployment at 90 degrees angle, holding back the maximum amount of floodwater it is designed for. The higher the flood, the higher the gate rises, but you are always protected. This is quite significant because a majority of floods are less than one foot of water height.<br />In the event of a flood, does the gate automatically go back down?<br /> - Generally yes, although after a full-height flood the gate may rest in the fully open position. Some customers request that the gate have a lock to keep it in the open position after deployment so that the area can be checked and cleared after the flood recedes.<br />Can debris cause the gate to malfunction?<br /> - The design of the FloodBreak unit is such that it is nearly impossible for a gate to be obstructed by debris. The unit is design to catch floodwaters and any debris is washed through to the pan and out the drainage pipes.<br />Frequently Asked Questions<br />
  26. 26. FEMA: Non-Residential Floodproofing – Requirements and Certification. April 1993<br />FEMA BCA Helpline, April 2011<br />FEMA: Hospital Gears Up to Combat Flood, 2001<br />Texas Medical Center, Hazard Mitigation Master Planning, March 2002<br />Reference Documents<br />
  27. 27. Make your facility a safer, more valuable asset to work and/or live in.<br />
  28. 28. 2800 Post Oak Blvd.Suite 5850Houston, TX 77056USA(+1)<br />