ETC and its employees are pleased to donate funds to Canine Companions for Independence throughout the year. This worthy organization provides assistance dogs free of charge to people with disabilities. We are proud to call CCI our designated charity. Learn more at cci.org.
Fall weather has revealed many areaways that have inadequate drainage because the drain grate clogs easily. It often takes just a leaf of two to slow down the flow on these small grates. Provide more margin against rising water and flooding interiors by installing larger drains. Not only will the larger drain remove water faster, it can become partially clogged and still have adequate flow to keep the water from entering under the door.
Thank you to our industry friends, Ev-Air Tight, Culbertson, Function Enterprises, CP&R,CWS, East Coast Building Services and Manganaro for participating in ETC’s mini-golf tournament. Your contributions helped raise funds for the Washington Chapter Canine Companions for Independence. The winner of the first-ever Canine Invitational Cup goes to….Ev-Air Tight!
Congratulations on winning the beautiful plastic trophy, as well as bragging rights of course!
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration(OSHA) has issued new regulations regarding “Walking and Working Surfaces, and Fall Protection Systems” that have changed the requirements and responsibilities for many building owners. Building owners are impacted if they employ individuals or service providers that utilize rope descent systems that are typically called boatswain chairs and most often used by window washing contractors. OSHA issued the new regulations as part of its efforts to decrease the number of falling deaths and increase worker safety.
Without completing the necessary requirements, building owners will not be permitted to use anchor points on their buildings. Starting on November 20, 2017, buildings owners must:
·Have their anchor points certified and tested every ten (10) years by a “qualified person”
·Have a “qualified person” conduct annual inspection.
·Provide written documentation to service providers that all anchor points have been certified, inspected, and tested as detailed in OSHA Regulations (Standards-29 CFR) sections 1910.27 and 1910.66
OSHA states that a state licensed professional engineer is best for meeting the definition of a “qualified person” that is required to test, certify, and inspect the anchor points. A professional engineer would be able to determine if the anchor points can support 5000 lbs. for each individual attached, if an adequate number of anchor points exist to use accepted safe rigging practices, and if the anchor points meet the applicable code requirements. Additionally, a professional engineer can certify the anchor points by conducting an in-depth study of materials, complete performance calculations, and review installation methods as required once every 10 years by the new regulations.A visual inspection can be conducted by a professional engineer to fulfill the annual inspection requirement.
Also beginning on November 20, 2017, building owners will also be responsible for supplying written documentation to all service providers that anchor points have been tested, certify, and inspected properly before work begins. Service providers, meanwhile, will be responsible for providing assurances that necessary formal training, inspection of portable equipment, and emergency procedures are completed.
It is important that building owners impacted by these new regulations are aware of their changing responsibilities and take the necessary steps before November 20, 2017. This will prevent serious liability issue for all parties involve and ensure worker safety.
If you experienced one or all of the following situations inside your building, most likely your building (and you) need a little more fresh air.
1. Did you see condensation on your window pane in the winter? Without enough fresh air and proper ventilation to remove the moisture from inside the building, humidity will keep building up in the air. When the moisture content of air reaches the level of the dew point at the cold surface of the window or any cold spot inside the building, condensation will start to form and accumulate. When too much condensation is present, water may drip into the wall cavity and cause damage. In addition, high humidity will encourage growth of mold and mildew. 2. Do you always smell something “unique” in your house as soon as you step into the building from outside? Is it your favorite food smell, kitty litter smell or air freshener smell? This means you don’t have enough fresh air to push the old and stale air out of the building. Proper ventilation will get rid of this “unique” household odor and provide you and your visitors a fresh and clean air smell. 3. Ever wonder why you don’t quite feel energetic and frequently feel sleepy staying inside the building? Maybe some fresh air can help. Fresh air provides you with a steady supply of oxygen which is needed by your brain and every single cell of your body. Time to treat your body with a good supply of fresh air.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out your building doesn’t have enough fresh air. However, it definitely takes a professional engineer to evaluate, analyze and design a cost effective and energy efficient ventilation system to provide adequate and comfortable fresh air supply year round
Millennials are defined as a generation of people whose age ranges from 18 to 34, that means born after 1981 or before 1999. This age group that has surpassed baby boomers in population are characteristically confident, self-expressive, multi-cultural, open to change and technically savvy. Millennials are not only aware of the latest market trends in design, they also expect their living environment to be up to the latest standards of design and construction. In conversation with recent Millennials buyers for condominiums, we discovered some of their priorities and expectations.
Building preferably located from a walking distance to train station, grocery store, restaurants and school. There is a strong preference for centralized community living and vibrant neighborhood.
Paper-less communication for all condominium announcements and meeting notes.
Outdoor jogging/walking trail and a dog park should be located nearby, if not on the building premises.
Automated control system for the condominium such as window shades, lighting and thermostat.
A well-lit spacious lobby that welcomes not only the visitors, but also serves as a lounge area for the residents to meet and greet. Front desk should have also a package delivery service.
Light fixtures should have motion detectors that could save their electrical bill and energy consumption.
Bike repair station and bike lockers should be located near parking garage, along with electrical charge stations for hybrid cars.
There is a lot of talk these days about using drones to inspect exterior building walls. Aside from issues regarding safety, liability, federal regulations, etc. there is little doubt that up close video photography can be a helpful tool. Visual inspection using binoculars from ground-level or other vantage points is a basic part of exterior wall inspection and investigation procedures. This process can only benefit from the use of drones in terms of being able to quickly examine large areas with good quality imaging (documentation).
However, any visual inspection is limited. An up-close inspection by a qualified inspector or engineer (using a roof-mounted swing stage, scaffolding, or a man-lift) provides the most reliable information possible by allowing the person to touch, probe, and sound (tap) areas of concern to check for delamination, stability, soundness, etc.
In addition, having an individual “on the wall” allows for intrusive sampling needed to determine in-place, hidden conditions. Visual examination alone cannot fully evaluate these matters.
Yes, drones can be a valuable part of an exterior wall inspection and/or evaluation. We own a drone and use it for certain inspections. However, drones alone are not capable of providing all the information necessary to perform a complete and comprehensive investigation of exterior walls or building conditions.