Hurricane Katrina will be America's
Costliest National Disaster
It appears that Hurricane Katrina has caused many deaths and over $34 Billion dollars in damages making it the worst American Catastrophe. To learn more about American Ingenuity's warranty against Hurricanes, Tornadoes and Earthquakes, click on Warranty.
According to information from the Insurance Information Institute, the 2004 Florida Hurricanes (Charley, Frances, Jeanne and Ivan) are among the 10 costliest U.S. catastrophes when measured by insured damages. At the time of the 2004 hurricanes, American Ingenuity had over 123 concrete domes in Florida, not one of them suffered any damage due to these hurricanes. News reports stated that in 2004 one out of every five residences in Florida suffered damage due to the hurricanes. The following was taken from the Insurance Information Institute's web site www.iii.org On their front page click on "Facts and Statistics," then click on Catastrophes.
Catastrophe (year) Inflation adjusted losses*
1. Hurricane Katrina (2005) $34.4 billion
2. Hurricane Andrew (1992) 20.86 billion
3. Sept. 11 attacks (2001) 20.05 billion
4. Northridge, CA earthquake (1994) 15.93 billion
5. Hurricane Charley (2004) 7.47 billion
6. Hurricane Ivan (2004) 7.11 billion
7. Hurricane Hugo (1989) 6.39 billion
8. Hurricane Frances (2004) 4.59 billion
9. Hurricane Jeanne (2004) 3.65 billion
10. Hurricane Georges (1998) 3.36 billion
11. Tropical Storm Allison (2001) 3.09 billion
12. Hurricane Opal (1995) 2.60 billion
13. Hurricane Floyd (1999) 2.22 billion
*Note: Adjusted to 2004 dollars by the Insurance Information Institute.
Concrete Dome Homes
Have Exceptional Strength
A dome shape has inherent strength that exceeds all other home designs as proven by Buckminster Fuller. Our reinforced concrete dome homes shell is virtually indestructible, able to withstand enormous wind and snow loads and capable of supporting earth berming.
As home manufacturers American Ingenuity is confident of our housing kits and we offer a structural guarantee the dome will withstand hurricanes, earthquakes and tornadoes. See the end of this page for a hurricane recap. Click on General to read quotes from dome owners whose domes were in the paths of the 2004 hurricanes. Click on Strength to read our most common asked strength questions and their answers. Click on Load Test to learn more about our dome's strength. Click on Warranty to learn about A.I.'s warranty against Hurricanes, Tornadoes and Earthquakes.
Since 1976 we have not had any skylights broken during hurricanes or tornadoes. We can only assume that hail has occurred during some of the tornadoes. Because we have had individuals ask us about the skylight's breakability, we did a test to see when we could break the skylight's tempered glass. We had to drop a 4 foot long 2x4 from 12 feet high before the skylight glass would break. We do not think that hail will break it. The skylight can be replaced if need be. Click on Strength to read more about Skylights.
During the 2004 Hurricane system, Florida experienced four hurricanes. None of our concrete domes suffered any damage, even though some were in the direct path of Charley, Ivan, Frances and Jeanne. The following is a recap of that hurricane season.
Click on the photos to enlarge them.
These domes are a 34' (two bedroom and two bath) connected to a 22' one car garage dome. They went through Hurricane Frances and Hurricane Jeanne with no damage. But a conventional house across the street lost its roof. Pictured on the left is a dumpster with that house's shingles and their carpet is on the ground.
This 45' Dome went through Hurricane Andrew
and had no structural damage. It suffered minor
damage when a riser panel was hit by a two wide
metal horse trailer. The riser wall ended up with a
hairline crack and a missing chunk of concrete.
The hurricane blew the plywood off their doors
and windows so the interior of their dome suffered
some rain damage.
HURRICANES AND THE AMERICAN INGENUITY DOME
American Ingenuity warranties their steel reinforced concrete domes against hurricanes, earthquakes and tornadoes. Since our dome kit manufacturing business started we have sold almost 500 kits into 46 states and seven foreign areas. Since then we have not had any of our clients have any damage due to hurricanes, earthquakes or tornadoes except for one dome during Hurricane Andrew. During Andrew a 45’ American Ingenuity Dome (pictured above) was impelled by a two wide metal horse trailer. A riser wall of the dome ended up with a hairline crack and a missing chunk of concrete. The dome owner caulked the crack and mixed up some fiber concrete and filled the chunk.
Hurricanes can cause loss of lives, damage to conventional homes and loss of. If more home owners chose American Ingenuity Domes they would not need to be concerned with these matters.
HURRICANE KATRINA August 29, 2005
Our thoughts and prayers go out to our fellow Americans in Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee and Alabama that were effected by this hurricane.
American Ingenuity Dome Homes are located in:
The Louisiana cities of St Bernard, Baton Rouge and Slidell
The Mississippi cities of Purvis, Magee, Byhalia, Saucier, Pattison and Pulaski
The Alabama cities of Rainsville, Scottsboro, Enterprize, Dora and Madison
On September 5th, 2005 the Murphy's in Purvis Mississippi called in and said their 48' dome shell was up but the inside was not finished. Hurricane Katrina destroyed their conventional house so they are living inside their unfinished dome. They have water but no electricity or gasoline for their generator.
On October 11, 2005 we heard from our dome owner in Slidell Louisiana. She purchased a 40’ dome in December 1987. She told us the following: "At first we evacuated to a hotel whose roof was blown off by the hurricane. So we had to move to another location. My 40’ American Ingenuity dome sits 8’ above sea level and was built on 10’ tall wood stilts with break a way basement walls. There was no damage to my dome structure. The water surge was 18’. Water splashed under a door but there was no water damage in my house other than a skylight leaked."
Her dome is the only livable house in the area. Down the street the only thing left of her sister’s house is a concrete slab.
The water surge pushed a big object under her dome bending a beam under the platform and cracking one wood stilt. The surge of water washed away the break-a-way basement walls and all her electrical and plumbing from under the dome. All she needs to move back in is to get plumbing and electric reconnected.
The first time she visited her dome after Hurricane Katrina, a man was standing looking at her dome. This person had visited her dome during its construction back in 1988. He reminded her about the “Nay Sayers that told her she was building the wrong type of house.” He wondered, “What those same people would think now.”
As we hear from other American Ingenuity dome owners in these states we will update this page.
HURRICANE IVAN 2004
Florida Today’s headline for September 17th was titled “Pensacola in Pieces.” Part of the story read, on September 15, 2004 Hurricane Ivan came on shore at Gulf Shores Alabama but the northeast winds caused the most damage to cities in the nearby Florida Panhandle of Pensacola, Milton, Santa Rosa, ..........
A Client in Milton Florida purchased a 45’ and 30’ dome with 34 screen dome March 1995. They were in the direct path of Hurricane Ivan. On 9/16 John said, “We were in the middle of the eye and had the full blast of the winds plus there was a tornado in our area. The area looks like a war zone. Our concrete domes were wonderful and suffered no damage.” He told us, “Firefighters came by our dome and told us ‘You have the right house for hurricanes.’” He had not received any reports on the wind speed but it was probably 135 to 145 mph or more plus there was a tornado in their neighborhood. Pine trees in his yard were stripped of their needles and their bark. Many of his pine trees were laying on a 45 degree angle. A 2x6 board hit the dome and ricocheted onto their screen dome breaking a rib causing the screen dome to collapse. (American Ingenuity does not warranty the screen domes against wind damage.) Interstate 10’s Bridge over Pensacola Bay is missing a precast concrete segment on each end…whole electrical substations were blown up. Casinos in Biloxi were destroyed.
A client in Santa Rosa Beach Florida purchased a 48’ and 34’ domes in July 1996. Gary told us, “They had over 135 mph winds and their domes suffered no damage.” Their domes sit higher than the surrounding houses at 56’ above sea level.
came on land at Port Charlotte and Punta Gorda August 13, 2004
A client in Port Charlotte purchased 40’ and 27’ domes in December 2002. They were in the direct path of Hurricane Charley coming on land in Florida. On September 8th, Trudy called to thank us for the dome. They had winds greater than 145 mph and their dome had no problem….one window got a crack from debris. She said that most of town was destroyed and all three area hospital’s roofs were blown off. Their domes are in Charlotte County near Lee County.
A client in North Ft Meyers purchased a 34’ dome home, 27’ two car garage and 30’ screen dome in January 2003. Amy called us 8/17/04 they were 15 miles from the direct hit and had 117 mph sustained winds. Their domes stood strong, the only vulnerable part was their garage door that wanted to blow in. So they used 2x4’s, plywood and sandbags to hold it in place. The first thing Amy said to Michael was, “Thank you for our domes.” Their Domes are located in southern Charlotte County near Lee County.
A client in Geneva Florida (near Orlando and Sanford) purchased 40’ and 27’ domes in March 1999. His domes were in the path of Charley and Frances and suffered no damage. Charley’s winds were over 100 mph and Frances winds were 70 to 80 mph.
A client in Bunnell (near New Smyrna Beach) purchased a 40’ dome in February 1992. They were in the exit path of Charley and had 90 mph gusts. Their dome stood strong while houses in their neighborhood lost their roofs.
A client in Flagler Beach purchased 34’ and 27’ domes in January 1999. Their domes were 15 miles from Charley’s exit path. They had 70 mph sustained winds with gusts of 80 mph. During the hurricane they could hear stuff hitting their domes. In the morning they walked around their yard and picked up shingles and so fits from other people’s houses, washed off their driveway and it looked like no hurricane had happened.
HURRICANE FRANCES 2004
On September 5, 2004 Hurricane Frances came on land at Fort Pierce and Vero Beach with the north east winds hitting our County of Brevard.
A client in Ft. Pierce purchased a 45’ concrete dome and a 34 screen dome in June 1993. Frances eye wall sat on them for two hours so the category 2 hurricane did category 3 damage. Cecelia said they experienced 120 to 130 mph winds with no dome damage while the house across the street lost most of its shingles.
American Ingenuity Dome offices, dome factory and all of our concrete dome residences in Brevard County went through 100 mph winds of Hurricane Frances and suffered no damage. Many conventional buildings lost roofs or had roof problems.
A client in Flagler Beach purchased 34’ and 27’ domes in January 1999. Their domes not only went through Frances but went through the exit winds of Charley (70 mph) with no structural damage. After the hurricane passed they picked up shingles and so fits from other people’s houses, washed off their driveway and it looked like no hurricanes had happened.
HURRICANE JEANNE 2004
On September 26, 2004 Hurricane Jeanne came on land at Stuart Florida just below Vero Beach with the north east winds hitting Indian River County and our County of Brevard.
American Ingenuity Dome offices, dome factory and all of our concrete dome residences in Brevard County went through about 10 hours of 105 mph winds of Hurricane Jeanne and suffered no damage. Many conventional buildings lost roofs or had roof problems. None of our thirteen dome clients in Brevard County suffered any damage to their domes. One of Busick’s 34’ dome home and 22’ dome garage in Melbourne is separated from the Indian River on the east only by a street (Pineapple). The domes suffered no damage while a house to the south directly across from the dome lost all its roofing. Rolls of their carpet are at the street, a dumpster holds all their shingles. The house contents are all wet and destroyed.
Plus Indian River flows south, but during this hurricane it flowed north with waves and white caps like an ocean.
HURRICANE ANDREW 1992
In August 1992 American Ingenuity domes were put to the ultimate test of strength when they faced the wrath of Hurricane Andrew as it slammed into south Florida. Winds at the nearby Tamiami airport were clocked at 212 mph, spawning tornadoes within the storm and leaving practically everything in its wake leveled. Nearly 200,000 people become homeless overnight. Even a tower at the Turkey Point Nuclear Power Plant, designed to withstand 200-mph winds, was irrevocably damaged by this fierce storm. We were not surprised, however, when we learned that our domes survived - in great contrast to the thousands of conventionally built houses of their neighbors. On Key Largo, just 20 miles south of the eye of the storm, a 40' dome faced the brunt of the storm. Built on pilings near the Atlantic Ocean, it was exposed to relentless high winds and driving rain. Unlike houses and commercial buildings in the surrounding area, it sustained absolutely no damage.
A 45' American Ingenuity dome home was in the direct path of the devastating storm, bearing the worst Andrew could deliver; yet it suffered no structural damage. A two wide metal horse trailer was impelled against the dome leaving a paint skid marking on the dome where the trailer slide around the dome to the other side. The horse trailer caused a crack in the riser wall and a chunk of concrete to break loose. The dome owner, caulked the crack and mixed up some of the fiber concrete and filled the chunk.
Due to the type and direction of the debris scattered around the dome's neighborhood, an engineer from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (F.E.M.A.) surmised that a tornado had struck the area. The engineer's own Alabama home had been hit by a tornado a few years ago, so he was impressed by the integrity of the dome on an emotional as well as a professional level. The dome structure had withstood not only the force of a hurricane but a tornado as well. The incredibly intense winds ripped open double entry doors and 12' sliding glass doors, which had been covered with protective plywood sheathing. Even though the wood and glass doors of the entryways succumbed to the wind and allowed interior water damage from the rain, the dome itself stood strong.
Tree Impact and the American Ingenuity Dome
No damage to Randy and Anita Brack’s 48’ dome after winds in excess of 75 mph hit North Carolina in July 1996. The real test came when a 115’ high, 30’ in diameter hickory tree was blown over and fell on their dome. The impact broke a 10” diameter branch. The tree slid off and landed on a deck post driving it and its 16” square concrete footer 6” further into the ground. The insurance agent who inspected the damage to the deck conveyed his amazement about the dome’s strength with this comment, “If that had been a frame house the tree would have ended up in the basement.”
Lighting Strike and the American Ingenuity Dome
American Ingenuity’s 45’
Office Dome withstood another one of nature’s most powerful forces, a lightning
strike. The lightning hit the outer edge of an entryway and the only damage it
did to the dome was to knock off a handful of concrete at the point of impact.
A couple of our computers have not been the same since, but the cost to repair
the dome did not exceed $30 in materials and labor.
This photo shows the corner of the high profile This is a close up of the lighting strike area......
entryway that was hit by the lighting. showing the area where the concrete was