Flood prevention on construction sites

3 minute read

Flooding can wreak havoc on both residential and commercial properties. It can also put a damper on construction projects in the following ways:

  • Delaying project timelines
  • Creating harder working conditions for construction workers
  • Causing significant damage to materials
  • Impacting the structural integrity of a building
  • Contamination may also occur where waste water drainage is located
  • Resulting in defective buildings

That’s why understanding what causes floods and learning some key tips for flood prevention on construction sites is vital.

What causes floods?

No matter where you live in the world, a flood is characterized as an overflow of water on land that is normally dry. Floods are the most frequently occurring natural hazard in Canada and can strike at any time of the year. They are typically caused by heavy precipitation and melting of snow and ice. Sometimes a flood can also be caused by the failure of a natural or man-made dam.

The consequences of flooding

Flooding may lead to water damage, which no one wants on their property. It is costly to repair and claims can be costly once a building is enclosed and interior finishes are installed. Flooding may also lead to water damage that has a ripple effect; negatively affecting the health of your employees, your clients, and yourself, as well as your bottom line.
If you’re unsure about the signs of water damage, here’s a water damage inspection checklist that may help you the next time you’re working on a property.

Preventing floods on construction sites

While you can’t control the weather, bodies of water, or dams, you can reduce the likelihood of a flood damaging your construction site. Those in charge of construction sites may want to consider installing water management and detection devices, as they can provide an alert when water is detected.
Water management devices should be installed on risers, as they are able to differentiate flows of water (normal, excessive, and leaking). What’s more, a device can do the following:

  • Shut down the water supply when a small amount of water flow is detected
  • Shut down the water supply when water flow exceeds a pre-determined parameter
  • Monitor normal water usage and adjust the pre-determined parameter

Water detection devices should be installed in the following areas:

  • Under hot water tanks
  • Under heating boilers
  • At the bottom of elevator shafts
  • Around air conditioning units
  • In electrical equipment rooms
  • Under incoming water risers

If possible, developing a water damage risk management program will go a long way in helping mitigate losses. Implementing such a program may also assist in saving time and money on future projects.

Why is insurance necessary?

A water damage risk management program will help protect your business, but sometimes – despite your best efforts – things can still go wrong. That’s why insurance is important. With the proper coverage, you can rest easy knowing that you have help protecting your business and bottom line. Learn more about the coverages available for your specific industry by visiting our construction project insurance page!