Demand Growing for FORTIFIED Homes as Oklahoma Communities Strive to Become More Resilient Against Severe Weather Events

Media Contacts
Mark Friedlander
(904) 806-7813
mfriedlander@ibhs.org

Tiffany Smith
(512) 636-7811
tsmith@ibhs.org

IBHS VP Fred Malik to Discuss FORTIFIED Home™ Construction and Impact in OK on Sept. 5 at OK Building Summit & Expo

OKLAHOMA CITY, Aug. 28, 2018 – As more Oklahoma communities focus on building stronger, more resilient homes to lessen the damage from high wind events, the demand for FORTIFIED Home™ construction in the Sooner State is growing.

“Oklahomans face the threat of high winds year-round. With extreme weather events becoming more frequent and costlier, market demand for stronger, safer homes and communities throughout Oklahoma has never been greater,” said Fred Malik, vice president of the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety’s (IBHS) FORTIFIED programs.

Malik will provide an overview of FORTIFIED Home construction in Oklahoma during his featured presentation on Sept. 5, 2018 at the 2018 OK Building Summit & Expo, which is being held at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City. His presentation begins at 10:45 a.m. CDT.

“As the national standard for resilient construction, our FORTIFIED Home program is based on extensive science-based testing of engineering and building standards designed to make new and existing homes stronger, safer and better able to withstand severe weather impacts,” Malik said.

He continued, “Property damage to homes from low-level tornadoes (EF-0 and EF-1) can be significantly reduced, and in many cases eliminated, if they are built or retrofitted using FORTIFIED standards, as we have tested during our 20-plus years of lab and field research. Homes can also be strengthened against straight-line wind events, severe thunderstorms and hailstorms.”

Malik added, “An essential feature of FORTIFIED construction is we start by focusing on the roof, which is the most important and most vulnerable component of every home. Your roof is your first line of defense during severe weather, so you want it to be as strong as possible.”

Malik stressed that whether you are building a new home, or retrofitting an existing residence, FORTIFIED Homes are affordable and available at multiple price points.

“We employ an incremental approach so that our FORTIFIED program offers three levels of designation—Bronze, Silver and Gold. New home buyers and current homeowners can work with their builders and contractors to choose the desired level of protection that best suits their budgets and resilience goals,” he said.

Homeowners should contact their insurance agent or visit the Oklahoma Department of Insurance website at www.ok.gov/oid/ to learn about possible incentives available for homes in Oklahoma that are designated under the FORTIFIED Home program.

Please visit the event’s website to learn more about the OK Building Summit & Expo.

###

About FORTIFIED
Please visit fortifiedhome.org to learn more about IBHS’ FORTIFIED Home program, future training opportunities, how to begin the designation process, how to identify a certified FORTIFIED Evaluator, and other valuable resources.

About the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS)
IBHS’ mission is to conduct objective, scientific research to identify and promote effective actions that strengthen homes, businesses, and communities against natural disasters and other causes of loss. Learn more about IBHS at DisasterSafety.org.