Be Prepared for Bad Weather
The winter of 2013-2014 was one of the worst on record for many parts of the United States. Not only did massive snowstorms blanket the Midwest and Northeast, but many parts of the West received almost no rain and found themselves experience serious drought conditions. Mix in the length of this winter (the snow season started and lasted several months longer than it has in recent decades), and it’s no surprise that there were countless logistical nightmares, from snow removal to school closings to power outages.
Not surprisingly, construction projects were affected across the country – and Construction Managers (CM) were forced to deal with a number of unforeseen circumstances. In fact, we recently surveyed owners of multi-million dollar luxury homes who said that weather-related delays were among their biggest frustrations. But even if CMs can’t prevent bad weather, there are a number of things that theycan do to keep their projects on track and minimize the risk of serious delays or incomplete work.
“Construction Managers have a tremendous responsibility to anticipate potential problems and find ways to work around them,” says Jake Morin, a Construction Program Manager for ProSight Specialty Insurance. “While there is no single foolproof way to prevent problems, we find that experienced CMs know how to prepare for bad weather well in advance.”
Morin notes that an experienced CM will foresee problems before they happen and will plan accordingly. “For example, if it is late winter and your job site truck route is already muddy, it is only going to get worse when the rain season hits. Therefore, an experienced CM will consult with the project owner and contractor to figure out a way to shore up the jobsite access, maybe put down some extra gravel and stone. This might seem like a simple task, however done too late or not at all, will create scheduling delays when heavy construction equipment starts to get stuck in the mud. This is something that needs to be done months in advance, not after the ground gets wet.”
One of Morin’s major recommendations is communication, communication, communication. “It is critical for everyone to be on the same page, so a sit-down meeting with all parties involved in a project to address important issues such as weather-related delays can be critical to staying on schedule, and on budget.”
ProSight Specialty Insurance has rapidly become a leader in the CM insurance segment thanks to our partnership with the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA) to develop insurance products tailor-made for construction management firms and practitioners. Our relationship with CMAA has given us unparalleled expertise in the CM space, and is allowing us to provide the best advice – and policies – to professionals in this exciting sector of the economy.
For more information on the ProSight Construction Manager Program, click here.