Keeping Up With Storm Protection
Staying Sunny In The Sunshine State
Florida, also known as the ‘Sunshine State’, enjoys beautiful weather year-round; but being a peninsula, it is also exposed to severe weather. Florida has been pummeled by some of the worst hurricanes, including Hurricane Andrew (1992), Hurricane Charley and Hurricane Frances (2004), and Hurricane Wilma (2005). To combat damage caused by severe storms, Florida continuously updates its building codes as better products come to the market.
As of 2014, all new construction and renovations located within the high-velocity hurricane zone must use HVHZ (High-Velocity Hurricane Zone) impact windows and doors. Communities located in areas within one mile of the coastline (where the wind speed is 130 mph or greater) or any location where the wind speed is 140+ mph are designated as wind-borne debris regions and require some means of opening protection. Certain counties such as Miami-Dade County and Broward County have instituted additional requirements for approved forms of opening protection.
In fact, obtaining a Miami-Dade NOA (Notice of Acceptance) is considered the highest standard for impact-resistant products. To receive a Miami-Dade NOA products must not only pass tests proving they can withstand high winds and repeated hits from “missiles” (large and/or small items projected at a high velocity), they must also prove that they can prevent air and water from leaking into the building during a severe storm, as well as pass a forced entry test.