Avoid Flood Damage by Following Flowcrete’s Flooring Advice
15 Jan 2015
- Water ingress can be a key issue during flooding.
- A textured finish can enhance grip underfoot.
- Systems with anti-slip aggregates can be specified to minimise noise levels.
During January Queensland typically experiences some of its wildest weather, with flooding and heavy rainfall a frequent occurrence.
Exposure to such powerful forces of nature can significantly affect multi-storey car parks, as not only could water ingress weaken the building’s structural integrity but large bodies of water can also create serious health and safety risks.
Flowcrete Australia has compiled the following advice to help car park operators learn about the problems caused by flooding and how correctly specified, trafficable floor coatings can help them to overcome these concerns.
A key issue is that during an influx of wet weather large amounts of rainfall can cause water to seep through the joints and cracks of bare concrete, releasing lime and other corrosive contaminants. These corrosive substances can fall onto vehicles below, causing substantial paintwork damage. Should this happen then it can lead to costly legal and insurance difficulties for the facility’s owner.
To create a safe and secure environment for vehicles that reduces these litigation hazards, a robust and waterproof deck coating should be installed to prevent water ingress from occurring in the first place.
Locations with high levels of salt in the atmosphere, such as beachside and water front areas, need to be aware that salt and water can be a highly damaging combination that is likely to cause bare concrete buildings problematic structural issues.
Commercial concrete slabs feature steel reinforcements, which will quickly rust if they come into contact with salt and water. Once the rust starts the steel can expand up to five times its previous size, causing concrete spalling. The first signs of concrete spalling are concrete staining followed by the disintegration of the concrete itself.
Once this has happened the integrity of the structure is compromised and a serious hazard has been created. In the worst case scenario this could lead to patches of concrete coming loose and falling away, which is not only a risk to both people and property but which can lead to negligence claims being made against the car park’s owner or operator.
In these environments it is especially important to safeguard the site against concrete spalling and disintegration by installing a car park floor coating that is able to form an impermeable barrier against large volumes of salt and water.
Slip and Trip Risks
Deteriorating concrete and ponding water left behind by periods of heavy rainfall can become serious slip and trip hazards for pedestrians. Having floors with the correct drainage gradients and a textured finish that enhances grip underfoot can help to minimise this danger. The design of the floor can also be used in this instance, as easy-to-see, colourful demarcation can be incorporated into the floor finish to help people safely navigate around the site.
Another, potentially unforeseen, consequence of the wet season for car parks is that tyre squeal can get worse. This is thanks to the fact that water carried into the site on tyres will make the floor slippery, aggravating the noise made by vehicles turning on a burnished or poorly sealed concrete floor.
Deck coating systems with anti-slip aggregates can be specified to minimise noise levels. This works as friction is created when the vehicle’s tyres comes into contact with the aggregates in the floor, reducing or removing this squealing sound. This is a particular advantage in areas of the site with tight turning circles. Resin flooring solutions are available that allow the amount of aggregates to be tailored to meet the anti-slip needs of the facility.
Identifying the potential problems that could be created for a car park development during the specification stages will help developers, owners and operators to ensure that they have the best materials and practises in place when potentially damaging situations such as flooding take place.
In summary Flowcrete Australia recommends that flooring for car parks in flood risk zones meet the following key criteria:
- Excellent Bond Strength
- Excellent Chemical Resistance
- High Abrasion Resistance
To talk to one of Flowcrete Australia’s resin flooring experts about the ideal solution for a specific car park project ring +61 7 3205 7115 or click here.
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Notes to Editors
Flowcrete Australia has offices in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne and is part of Flowcrete Asia Pacific, one of the four divisions that make up Flowcrete Group Ltd.
Flowcrete Group Ltd. is a world leader in the manufacture of seamless industrial and commercial resin floor, wall and coving solutions as well as other specialist coating technologies. Flowcrete Group Ltd. is a subsidiary of RPM International Inc. and has international manufacturing facilities in Europe and Africa as well as Central and South East Asia.
Flowcrete supplies world-class seamless flooring solutions to transform environments across the globe including; decorative seamless resins, waterproof car park deck coating systems, seamless resin terrazzo, durable antimicrobial flooring, fast curing systems, corrosion protection, self-levelling underlayments and swimming pool surrounds.
Flowcrete's ambitious and dedicated team, led by President Craig Brookes, is inspired by excellence in people, products and service as well as continual innovation and sustainable growth. Flowcrete continues to use its global expertise to introduce environmentally friendly, hygienic and aesthetically attractive floors to create a better and more sustainable world.