Building Owners and Managers
Whether large or small, operating a business exposes a person to a myriad of potential problems that can arise from many areas, such as:
- Building Envelope Issues
- Green Buildings
- Fire Protection Equipment
- Premises Liability
- Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing Problems
- Indoor Air Quality
- Structural Engineering
Our engineers, architects, fire consultants, certified industrial hygienists, and toxicologists have extensive experience in the investigation of incidents and accidents that may have occurred on your property.
Starting with the building envelope, proper sealing of a structure reduces the demand for HVAC systems. Those systems, however, must be designed to provide proper environmental conditions for the occupants. Our engineers assess the condition of a building’s envelope to assure that it is of a proper design, was constructed according to plans and provides the building with the protection for which it was designed. We can now access and inspect the exterior of high-rise buildings using our fleet of drones, permitting inspection without the expense of scaffolding or man lifts.
Fire Protection Equipment
All but the oldest buildings are equipped with fire protection sprinkler systems. Generally very reliable, these systems sometimes fail, causing damage to the building and the contents within when the system initiates without cause or fails to trigger the designed protection when a fire occurs. The reasons for these failures are complex. The experienced fire protection experts at Rimkus get to the root cause quickly to determine what happened and to prevent it from recurring.
Increased efficiency helps to reduce the environmental footprint of the building. Rimkus engineers and architects are trained in the requirements for green building construction, operation, and maintenance, and many hold LEED® AP certification. We are often called upon to inspect and ensure that new construction and remodeling efforts meet the requirements for LEED® certification by the U.S. Green Building Council.
Foundation problems can also create opportunities for water intrusion, leading to a litany of other problems within the structure and to the structure. Rimkus’ experts have analyzed thousands of foundations, including a review of design and construction techniques, soil analysis, man-made, and naturally occurring seismic activity, and sinkholes to determine their cause and, where appropriate, to recommend remedial steps to correct those problems.
Roofing Systems Failure
The roof is a key part of the building envelope, whether it is on a multi-family, commercial, or high-rise building; is a flat or peaked design, or is clad with any manner of materials. Roofs are attacked every day by the effects of sunlight, wind, rain, hail, excessive snow load, and even falling tree limbs. To maintain the necessary protection for the underlying building, the roof’s structural members and decking must also be of proper design and in adequate condition to handle the anticipated loads.
Rimkus’ engineers have evaluated the cause of damage on roofs of every design and application. We routinely assess whether the existing damage is the result of a specific event (such as a hurricane or hailstorm) or simply from age-related deterioration, lack of maintenance, or other long-term issues. We provide repair plans, including whether the entire roof or only parts of the roof suggest damage resulting from the event in question
Barrier EIFS Problems
First noticed in 1995, moisture intrusion problems are still a concern in the building industry in barrier EIFS-clad structures. No longer limited to high-moisture environments, moisture damage related to EIFS-clad buildings is attributed to many factors, including incorrect or inadequate architectural drawings, manufacturers’ instructions, specifications and materials, improper maintenance, installation techniques, and other construction defects.
Slip-and-fall and trip-and-fall incidents are all too common in commercial establishments. We investigate these incidents and accidents to determine whether the property involved meets code requirements and examine security camera footage while leveraging video image enhancement tools to determine whether the event in question actually occurred as reported and, if not, how it happened.
To ensure that the workplace is both safe and protective of employees’ health, we maintain a staff of qualified human factors experts and biomechanical engineers, and certified industrial hygienists who investigate ergonomic issues such as repetitive use injuries and air quality complaints.
Indoor Air Quality/Mold
Rimkus’ experts can conduct an extensive analysis to identify the cause and origin of moisture intrusion and trace it to determine the full extent of the damage. Along with the moisture can come the damaging effects of mold and rot. We routinely inspect and evaluate moisture-related damage, including the determination of the type of mold involved to determine what repairs and remediation are required.
Structural Engineering Consulting
Our engineers are experienced in the design, analysis, and construction of structural systems for multi-family and commercial buildings, industrial, petrochemical and manufacturing facilities, bridges, signs, towers, and more.
Coupled with extensive forensic experience, our engineers are uniquely qualified to evaluate structural damage stemming from a variety of causes including wind events like hurricanes and tornadoes, flooding, ice and snow loading, fires and explosions, mechanical impact from vehicles and debris, ground subsidence, or nearby construction. We have investigated collapses and failures of building components, differential foundation movement, long-term deterioration effects on structural components, and design and construction defects.