At Watterson, no matter how tough the job is, our clients expect the best of our team. Watterson is resolved to exceed the expectations of our clients and provide an experience that can make every emergency response event have a positive outcome. We fulfilled these expectations and so much more for one of our most valuable clients after Hurricane Harvey. Here’s the full story from our Senior Vice President of Emergency Response:
As hurricane season approached the summer of 2017, Watterson was prepared for what was forecast as an extremely active season. The first major storm of the season, Harvey, arrived in August and became the most devastating hurricane to ever hit the Texas coast. As the storm approached, the Watterson emergency response team began to gather data to help pin point the path of the storm and its intensity and began to communicate with our clients that may be impacted by the path of the hurricane. Watterson, in preparation for a tropical weather scenario, sends our clients daily weather reports that include the forecast path, hurricane landing, wind speeds, hurricane force ratings, and rainfall forecasts. In response to our communications, one of our clients informed us to be prepared to evaluate the damage to their properties following the conclusion of Harvey. This client, who operates many early childhood development centers in the greater Houston area, had 6 locations that were impacted by severe flooding and needed to be evaluated once the flood waters receded.
After 5 days, our teams were able to gain access to each location and begin a thorough inspection and evaluation of the properties complete with 100% photo documentation of all contents throughout the entire premise. Each of the six buildings were in need of a full restoration plan and an extensive build back of the entire site. Flooding over 6ft high had destroyed all of the contents of each center requiring the disposal of everything on the inside, including all furnishings, ceiling tile, drywall, insulation, and flooring. Watterson prepared our proposals and gathered our contractor teams to begin work with the goal of having each center open for our clients by Q1 of 2018.
Once the scope of work was approved by the insurance carrier and the client, our contractors got to work. In 10 days we completed the remediation process utilizing 4 teams that included: full disposal of contents, extraction and an initial cleaning, a full interior demo of all building finish materials, microbial treatment, final cleaning, and dry out. Throughout the restoration process, our emergency response leadership team visited each site to ensure personally the work was completed to the Watterson standards in preparation of build back. Our project management team took over the coordination of the build back with our contractors and our clients teams, which include location, district, region, and corporate partners. At a minimum, daily updates were provided as we worked through the process and changes that were needed to accomplish the build back. The Watterson project management team continued to keep their hands on approach and regularly followed up with on site visits to ensure the clients and contractors were satisfied with the progress. By December, we had 4 centers completed with build back and ready to be opened to the community with the fifth center scheduled to open the first of January.
Watterson understood the impact of getting these centers back and operational for the community. As one of the first projects to be started and completed in these devastated communities, these centers are helping provide a service to their communities again. At Watterson, we deliver what we promise with a sense of urgency. We understand that your locations are not just a place of business, but provide jobs and are part of a community that you are a part of. We are proud of our contractors and project management teams that assisted our client to reestablish themselves in their neighborhoods.
Proudly doing Whatever It Takes,
Chris Munkvold – Senior Vice President – Emergency Response