Vancouver retrofit: gas meter valve cage to protect against chimney/wall collapse.
Each spring Canada's insurers, through the ICLR, retrofit an existing
home to make it more resilient to local hazards. The ICLR then works with the
media to share this knowledge with other homeowners. In 2008, the ICLR
retrofitted a Montreal home against winter storms and earthquakes.
2008 marked the sixth year that ICLR has retrofitted an existing home
as part of Emergency Preparedness Week. In 2007, a home in Edmonton was
retrofitted to protect against tornado and winter storms. In 2006, a home in
Ottawa was made more resilient to earthquakes and winter storms. In 2005, a
home in Vancouver was made more resilient to earthquakes, and in 2004, a
Halifax home was protected against hurricanes. In 2003, a home in London was
made more resilient to tornadoes. The Institute has also retrofitted several
child care centres as part of its "Protecting our Kids from Disasters".
Paul Kovacs, Executive Director of ICLR, conducted a media tour of the
Montreal home. Says Kovacs: "Actions taken to make a home more resilient to
natural catastrophes should reflect local hazard risk. All of Quebec represents
an active zone for winter storm, and the Montreal corridor contains an active
seismic zone. Homeowners living in these areas, and in other places in Canada
that are subject to different extremes, can prepare now for hazards that will
inevitably strike in the future".
The Montreal home retrofit included:
Installing a diesel generator as an alternative power source
Putting in surge protection on bigger-ticket electronic items
Fitting the meter with a natural gas seismic shut off valve
Anchoring cabinets, office equipment, and bedroom furniture to walls
Outfitting the washing machine with armoured water supply hoses
Anchoring the hot water heater to the floor
Securing pictures and mirrors to the walls
Applying 3M Scotchshield safety UV film to windows
Installing carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and providing a fire
Installing snow melt cables on roof edges and gutters to prevent the
formation of ice dams