Storm-Weary Contractors Braced for Hurricane Delta

Hurricane Delta hit the U.S. on Oct. 9, adding to the seemingly endless barrage of hurricanes that have slammed the Gulf Coast and causing an influx of work for roofing contractors.

Delta has reportedly caused $700 million to $1.2 billion in insured losses. Louisiana is still struggling with recovery efforts from Hurricane Laura, which devastated the area in August as a Category 4 storm. Meanwhile, Hurricane Sally struck Alabama and Florida in mid-September after re-intensifying into a Category 2 storm. Compounded with supply chain issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, roofing contractors have their work cut out for them.

“I’ve never seen anything like this, I’ve been working here for 30 years and never seen anything like this, it’s been hell this year,” said Juanita Head, office manager for M. L. Raab & Sons in Shreveport, La. “It’s hard keeping up.”

Jason Collins, owner of Armour Roof & Dek in Spanish Fort, Ala., said the phone calls have been non-stop ever since Sally tore up southwest Alabama. He said on a good day he receives about 30 calls, but is now averaging about 300 calls a day.

“There’s going to be somebody out there that was referred to you and you’re three, four days out from seeing them,” he said. “I’m finding that people want to get their houses back to normal, and they want it done now, so that’s one of the things we’re dealing with.”

Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association Vice President Reed Hitchcock said that the hurricanes are complicating supply chain problems caused by the pandemic, and speculated that lead times won't improve until mid- to late November.

“I wish I had the crystal ball on this one,” said Hitchcock. “In talking to our members, there is some anticipated demand slowdown coming with the fourth quarter and the first quarter coming up.”

On the commercial side, Nations Roof, which works in all 50 states, has been busy in areas affected by the hurricanes by ensuring its customers are taken care of with each successive storm.

“In many instances we’ll do sort of a triage and get them watertight, then be able to come back and do more permanent repairs,” said John Geary, chief marketing officer for Nations Roof.

Nations Roof had a personal stake in the recent hurricanes. Not only is a business unit located in Mobile, Ala., Nations Roof’s national service center is in the area, which serves as the communications hub for the entire company. That means any incoming hurricanes could potentially harm how it does business.

In light of the severe storm damage, more roofing companies and customers are now looking into above-code designs like the FORTIFIED Roof system from the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety. FORTIFIED Roofs are built for 135 mph winds, typically seen in Category 2 or 3 hurricanes.

“If nothing else, this is really an important example of why mitigation and taking steps when the opportunity presents itself is so important,” said Fred Malik, managing director of FORTIFIED Building Products.

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Before/after aerial images of Calcasieu Parish, La., following Hurricane Delta. Photos courtesy of EagleView Roofing.

GAF Energy Receives Renewable Energy Leaders Award by Los Angeles Business Council

LOS ANGELES — GAF Energy was presented with the prestigious “Renewable Energy Leaders Award” by the Los Angeles Business Council (LABC) for the company's contributions toward financing solutions and progressive support for rooftop PV solar projects in the Los Angeles region.

The LABC also recognized the GAF Energy team for bringing financing opportunities within the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s (LADWP) Feed-in Tariff, a renewable energy program that allows property owners and developers to generate and sell clean energy to help achieve the city’s renewable energy goals. 

“We are honored to receive this award from one of California’s most influential economic and environmental leaders,” said Jason Barrett, vice president of residential and commercial sales for GAF Energy. “LABC has been a critical partner for GAF Energy in the Los Angeles area, helping advocate for innovative public-private partnerships that lead to greater clean energy deployment across the state.” 

The award was presented to GAF Energy at the 2020 LABC Sustainability Summit, an annual convening of business, government and nonprofit leaders. The summit seeks to address critical topics like international climate policy, regionalization of the energy grid, and California’s resilience strategy in the face of growing natural disasters.

“The LABC applauds GAF Energy for their ongoing commitment to deliver renewable energy projects to California,” said Mary Leslie, president of the LABC. “Thanks to GAF Energy’s contributions to innovative financing solutions, the Los Angeles area is now experiencing greater solar adoption that supports a healthy economy and a cleaner environment.”

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EagleView, Skydio Partner to Provide Autonomous Drone Technology for Better Property Inspections

BELLEVUE, Wash. — EagleView and GIS solutions announced an exclusive property inspection partnership with Skydio, a leading U.S drone manufacturer and world leader in autonomous flight technology for automated residential roof inspection with drones.

This is part of a multi-year, multi-million-dollar exclusive partnership to deliver Skydio House Scan to several major country markets. The partnership brings the power of precision drone technology and AI to insurance carriers, claims adjusters, and government bodies and will result in the largest ever commercial drone deployment with thousands of units deployed.

"EagleView is excited to partner with Skydio to deliver breakthrough innovation for residential roof inspection that puts autonomous drone technology and unparalleled image quality to work for our customers," said Chris Jurasek, CEO of EagleView. "EagleView's images are already 16 times clearer than those of satellites, and with Skydio's drones you'll be able to not only spot a dime on the roof but see the face of Franklin D. Roosevelt stamped on it. This partnership allows customers to confidently make decisions while lowering costs."

The Skydio 2 drone technology with Skydio House Scan software enables an intuitive flight experience. It allows autonomous data capture of a residential roof with precision and completeness, providing unequaled image clarity and property intelligence. Together, EagleView and Skydio provide a complete drone inspection solution for residential properties that creates a facet-by-facet flight plan and autonomously flies the inspection for consistent, comprehensive image capture for virtual property assessments.

The partnership with Redwood, Ca.-based Skydio is part of the upcoming EagleView Assess product launch. Assess will continue to expand metro coverage over the coming year, followed by wider coverage in rural areas.

"We are excited to partner with EagleView to revolutionize the residential roof inspection market through the power of autonomous drones and AI," said Adam Bry, CEO of Skydio. "Together with EagleView, we provide insurance carriers, claims adjusters, construction companies, and government bodies with a first-of-its-kind integrated solution that automates the entire inspection process. Thanks to the unique flight autonomy capabilities of Skydio drones, we are able to enhance virtual property inspections, delivering exceptional accuracy, consistency, and image quality."

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Daniel Snell Promoted to President of Roof Services, a Tecta America Company 

ROSEMONT, Ill. — Tecta America announced that Daniel Snell has been promoted to the operating unit president of Roof Services of Virginia Beach and Richmond, Va., as of Oct.1. Snell has been part of the long-term succession plan since Tecta America acquired Roof Services in December of 2018.

Snell started with Roof Services in 1989. Although he left for a period of time, he has been a part of Roof Service's growth and success for the last 24 years. He had worked in various positions, starting as a laborer and then moving up to foreman before becoming the operations manager in 2002. He was then promoted to vice president of operations before becoming senior vice president for the last two years.

Snell will continue to work with the strong senior management team at Roof Services, including Joe Vieni in Richmond, Gil Digby, and James Wilson in Virginia Beach. John Babcock, founder and past president, is pleased to pass the baton to his senior vice president and offers his assistance in the future if needed.

Snell went to Rock Christian Academy and Frederick Military Academy. He enjoys his country home with his wife and visits from his three wonderful children, three beautiful grandchildren, and his two fur babies. For relaxing, Snell can be found reading, camping, fishing, and spending time with family and friends.

"Based on what we have seen from Danny and Roof Services since joining Tecta, we are very excited about Danny's promotion and expect great things from him and his team," said Jeff McMenamy, Tecta's senior vice president of operations.

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MCKINNEY, Texas — SRS Distribution Inc. announced that it has simultaneously acquired CB Wholesale (CB) in Washington and RSI Building Products (RSI) in Louisiana. Both companies specialize in the distribution of residential and commercial roofing, drywall, and other related products. Terms of the agreements were not disclosed.

“We are truly honored to welcome both the CB and RSI teams to the SRS family," said Dan Tinker, president and CEO of SRS Distribution.

Headquartered in Bellingham, Wash., CB was founded in 1982 by Brent and Cherie Walker and is currently run by their daughter, Regan Walker-Sayres. The company also operates a second location in Burlington, Wash. Walker-Sayres will continue to lead their dedicated employee base under the CB banner, ensuring continuity and consistency for customers and supplier partners.

Headquartered in Shreveport, La., RSI was founded in 1985 by Jean and Jerry Sayres and is currently run by their son and Walker-Sayres' father-in-law, Skip Sayres. The company operates four other locations in Louisiana (Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Hammond, New Orleans) and one branch in Dallas. RSI’s senior management team, Skip Sayres and Ed Adams, will continue to lead their dedicated employee base under the RSI banner while providing exceptional service to the company’s loyal customers.

"We have known Skip, Regan, and the rest of the extended Sayres family for many years and are thrilled they have decided to join forces with SRS," said Tinker. "Over the past 25-plus years, both businesses have built strong reputations in their respective markets and have become two of the most respected companies in the industry.

"By combining the resources of SRS with the local relationships and knowledge of CB and RSI, we will further enhance our ability to service customers, support our supplier partners, and provide growth opportunities for our employees."

SRS Distribution Expands in Washington, Louisiana, and Texas Through Acquisition of Two Industry Leaders