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May 18th, 2016

How to Participate in Deck Safety Month® 

(Article by Deckorators, Chris Camfferman. First appeared in the May issue of Building Products Digest and The Merchant)

3 ways you can do your part to promote safe outdoor living (and potentially expand sales)

May’s warming weather allows homeowners around the country to start spending extended time outside on their decks. Unfortunately, large numbers of those decks are poorly maintained or unsafe — making the structures vulnerable to collapse and putting homeowners and their guests at risk of serious injury.

Deck failures and resulting injuries can be avoided through regular inspection and maintenance of existing decks, and proper installation of new decks. May is national Deck Safety Month®, and represents a perfect opportunity for dealers to do their part to promote safe outdoor living while potentially growing deck sales.

Following are three ways dealers can participate in Deck Safety Month®:

Serve as a safety resource

The nationwide need for proper inspection, maintenance and remodeling of existing decks has never been greater. According to the North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA), an estimated 50 percent of the 40 million residential decks and 10 million commercial decks in the United States are more than 25 years old.

During Deck Safety Month®, dealers can commit to becoming a true safety resource for customers. Make safety a main talking point with contractors and consumers, and be more intentional about making them aware of advancements in building codes and products. Stock the latest deck components — such as decking, railing and balusters — that can bring structures up to code while adding value to homes.

Get the word out

NADRA declared May 2006 the first Deck Safety Month® and is dedicated to raising awareness for necessary deck safety measures. The organization offers members a Deck Safety Month® toolkit featuring a variety of resources dealers can use to promote making decks safe and code compliant.

Promotional materials featured in past Deck Safety Month® toolkits include inspection checklists, a customizable press release template, a customizable video and a social media content calendar. (Visit www.nadra.org for the latest information on promotional tools available for 2016, including a new mobile application for evaluating decks.) Utilize such resources to increase deck safety awareness among customers and show your company cares about the community.

Offer deck inspections

NADRA offers tools to help homeowners perform their own deck checks, but deck inspection demands professional training, know-how and experience. When looking to identify parts of a deck that require attention, there is no substitute for a professional inspection.

During Deck Safety Month®, consider having select staff members undergo training to achieve professional certification in deck inspection. (NADRA offers inspection training and certification for members.) Offering homeowners deck inspection services not only helps ensure that decks are safe and code compliant, it could also lead to new sales opportunities.

This Deck Safety Month®, dealers have an opportunity to help prevent accidents and injuries associated with improperly maintained or unsafe decks. Consider these three Deck Safety Month® ideas — and come up with creative initiatives of your own — to raise awareness for deck safety and possibly tap into a market of decks that need repair or replacement.

About the Author

Chris Camfferman is the director of category marketing for Universal Forest Products, Inc. Deckorators is a brand of Universal Forest Products and the industry leader in decking, railing, balusters, post caps, lighting and more. For more information on Deckorators, visit deckorators.com.

May 5th, 2016

News Release

Contact: Michael Beaudry
NADRA Executive VP
215-679-4884
Info@NADRA.org 

May is Deck Safety Month® – Deck Safety Tips for Homeowners

QUAKERTOWN, PA – The North American Deck and Railing Association declared May as Deck Safety Month®. NADRA’s Campaign for deck safety awareness is an effort to promote outdoor living in a beautiful and safe environment. During Deck Safety Month® the experts at NADRA are offering safety tips for homeowners and encouraging you to Check Your Deck®.

“It’s springtime and we all want to get out and enjoy our decks,” says Bob Lett, vice president of national sales for WOLF Home Products. “NADRA wants to help keep homeowners safe. Deck maintenance means so much more than just cleaning your deck. It means making sure your entire deck structure is in good, safe order. Just like your car, you need to evaluate, ‘tune up’ and keep your deck in safe operating condition on a regular basis. These checklists from NADRA can help you do just that.”

A key element to enjoying your deck for years to come is making sure it is safe. NADRA’s “10-Point Consumer Safety Checklist” is an efficient way to take a good look at the different parts of your deck, with an eye to what might need maintenance, repair or replacement. The checklist can be found at http://bit.ly/NADRA10PointConsumerChecklist.

Homeowners should consider a professional deck inspection. “A professional inspector will thoroughly examine your deck, provide information on your deck’s capacity limits, identify any dangerous problem areas and give you some insight of what to keep your eye on in the future,” says Beaudry. NADRA provides industry professionals with a Deck Evaluation Form that is available here: http://bit.ly/NADRADeckEvaluationForm, along with a new online Deck Evaluation Form (Beta Test). This is the latest iteration of NADRA’s Deck Evaluation Form. It’s easy to use and allows deck professionals the ability to save and print deck inspection results. The online form includes inspection items such as stairs, footings, beams/joists, ledger, boards/surface, rails/guards and more. Visit CheckYourDeck.org to test it out.

“We recommend ASHI-certified home inspectors or a knowledgeable deck builder for inspections of older decks,” says Beaudry. “Our NADRA member deck builders are required to adhere to a code of ethics and comply with state licensing and insurance requirements. This brings peace of mind to homeowners using our NADRA members.”

Deck inspection requires special knowledge, expertise and experience. To find a professional deck builder and inspector, please visit www.NADRA.org.

The North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA) is dedicated to increasing public awareness of the necessity for regular inspection and maintenance of existing decks and proper installation of new decks. For more information visit www.NADRA.org

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April 29th, 2015

QUAKERTOWN, PA – Your deck is the perfect place to enjoy warm weather with friends and loved ones. However, a poorly maintained or unsafe deck could possibly collapse, causing serious injuries to you and your guests. During Deck Safety Month® in May, experts at the North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA) recommend homeowners Check Your Deck® before starting to plan family activities.
“Our number one priority and message to the public is to ensure that the decks they use are safe,” says Michael Beaudry, executive vice president of NADRA. “Outdoor structures like decks are exposed to sun, rain, snow and extreme temperature changes over the years. The need to maintain and inspect them is critical for keeping decks strong and safe.”

NADRA has created campaigns and educational programs, along with certifications for home inspectors, deck builders, remodelers, builders, code officials, engineers, architects, distributors, lumberyards and manufacturers to improve proper installation practices. The organization has also developed checklists and safety awareness information for consumers to assure they have details available to them to evaluate their decks. The information can be found HERE.

With an estimated 40 million residential and 10 million commercial decks in the United States that are more than 20-30 years old, it’s important for homeowners to check their deck on a yearly basis.

Consumer Checklist

A key element to enjoying your deck for years to come is making sure it is safe and code compliant. NADRA’s “10-Point Consumer Safety Checklist” is an efficient way to take a good look at the different parts of your deck, with an eye to what might need maintenance, repair or replacement. The checklist can be found at http://bit.ly/NADRA10PointConsumerChecklist.

Homeowners should consider a professional deck inspection. “A professional inspector will thoroughly examine your deck, provide information on your deck’s capacity limits, identify any dangerous problem areas and give you some insight of what to keep your eye on in the future,” says Beaudry. “NADRA provides industry professionals with a Deck Evaluation Form that is available HERE.

Older decks require closer scrutiny and regular inspections. Many decks were built before code requirements were established to protect consumers. Some of these older decks may have deck-to-house attachments using only nails instead of the current recommended construction using deck tension hardware that greatly helps in the prevention of ledger failures.

“We recommend ASHI-certified home inspectors or a knowledgeable deck builder for inspections of older decks,” says Beaudry. “Our NADRA member deck builders are required to adhere to a code of ethics and comply with state licensing and insurance requirements. This brings peace of mind to homeowners using our NADRA members.”

Deck inspection requires special knowledge, expertise and experience. NADRA offers training and certification for its members along with ASHI home inspectors and others interested in professional deck inspection. For additional information on NADRA certification classes, click HERE.

The North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA) is dedicated to increasing public awareness of the necessity for regular inspection and maintenance of existing decks and proper installation of new decks. For more information visit www.NADRA.org 

  ###

January 21st, 2015

January 14th, 2015

From the President:

On Tuesday night Jan 13th I opened the meeting welcoming everyone back with the hopes that all attendees had a wonderful Holiday and a happy New Year. I was extremely pleased that we had a very healthy turn out for the first meeting of 2015. We had a wonderful blend of attendees.

After we all introduced ourselves I reminded everyone whom our past sponsors had been in late 2014 and that it is our responsibility as a chapter to support the products that sponsor our meetings. Following that reminder our NJ Chapter Secretary, Judy,  followed up on the minutes from our last meeting and the Chapter Treasurer, Gus, reported on our financials. Some of the members had some good questions about our budget and they asked about our intent with the budget. Gus explained the need to cover the costs of some events and that we need to continue to grow our budget so in the future we could potentially look at events or promotional ideas for the chapter. Some of the members suggested we look to invest in some small social media like Facebook. A motion was made to invest in utilizing Facebook to help promote our Chapter. Everyone felt this was a great idea for the Chapter. We all feel the need to continue to make more of a presence. As NADRA some progress has been made but we need to continue to strive forward and grow.

After Gus had updated everyone on the financial aspect of the Chapter I introduced Vinnie C. from Admiral Spacemaker. He was the Sponsor of the meeting. Joining him was a fellow NADRA member, Dave Lombardo from MD. Vinnie launched into his presentation explaining the benefit of Admiral Spacemaker and Dave added to the presentation by discussing some of the installs he had completed over the last few months. All levels of the channel had excellent questions. They seemed excited to see a new concept in the market. Some of the builders had great questions as it related to install techniques, which Dave was happy to answer.

On the heels of Vinnie’s presentation we had our guest speaker Michael Beaudry from NADRA HQ explain to the group all of the tools that NADRA offers. He expressed how pleased he was with our participation with the Deck for a Soldier®  program. On a local level, he suggested we get more involved with Deck Safety Month® . He reminded everyone about the deck certification course and reminded all attendees that NADRA had just completed the deck certification course with a good number of home inspectors. He explained that all of those inspectors will be looking for NADRA deck builders as decks need to be replaced. It was refreshing to be reminded of all the wonderful marketing tools that NADRA really offers and in the future we should always consider adding the NADRA logo to our business cards, letter head, etc. We need to continue to raise awareness wherever we can. For the retailers he made a wonderful suggestion by reminding them they should post the deck safety checklist for homeowners and contractors to see at their locations.

Our committee updates went very well. We discussed the upcoming deck awards and reminded everyone to please register and get projects submitted and by a show of hands I asked who might be supporting the awards by submitting projects. All of the builders agreed to participate and then Judy in turn asked about sponsorship and asked the manufacturers/distributors and dealers to please get their sponsorship forms filled out and turned in. Everyone is excited about the event and it looks to me like we will get some good participation. Gus and Bruce spent some time reviewing our recent Deck for Hope project and how well it went and how much we appreciated many of the manufacturer reps stepping up in addition to our builders. Bruce read off a beautiful email that we got from Jack M.- the project coordinator for Homes for Our Troops. He really appreciates what we are doing in trying to give back. Feeling humbled, I reminded the group how it has made me feel so much gratitude for being part of the NADRA organization. Tina from MRS did a very professional report on some fun events we will look to do based on surveys she had taken months back. As part of the location committee she mentioned we all agreed to keep our meetings at the same place for sake of consistency.

After our committee updates I again thanked all in attendance and again thanked our sponsor and our guest speaker. Overall, an awesome meeting with great content and great participation by all attendees!

Lainie Sleppin

NADRA NJ Chapter President

June 15th, 2014

3 On Your Side: Deck Safety Tips As The Summer Season Begins

By Jim Donovan

Watch the video HERE

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The last thing that probably comes to mind when you think of a barbecue on your deck is third degree burns and concussions. But 3 On Your Side consumer reporter Jim Donovan finds that each year that’s exactly what happens to dozens of people when the deck floor below suddenly gives way.

One minute friends and family are enjoying a back yard cookout, the next, a deck comes crashing down and everything goes flying.

Each year dozens of people are injured and some killed when an unsafe decks fails.

“It’s just a matter of being aware.  It’s an outside structure, it’s in the elements, are people taking care of it, are they staining it, are they protecting their materials on their decks,”  said Michael Beaudry with North American Deck and Railing Association.

By one estimate, nearly 20 million decks nationwide need to be rebuilt or at least retrofitted to meet current codes.  The average wooden deck has a lifespan of 10 to 15 years.

“If you take care of it and you maintain it and you stain it, it can last a lifetime.  But if you don’t, it’s not going to stand up to the elements,” said Beaudry.

“You can see the deck in general is on its last legs and really needs to be totally redone,” said Mike Ebner with Back to Nature Decks.

Ebner has been building decks for over 25 years and says homeowners should inspect their decks annually.

He says it starts with the footers.  They should be above ground so you can see if it’s rotting or if there is any problem. Look for wood rot elsewhere too.

And be aware of improper connections to the house which can pose problems.

“The bolts should be staggered every 12 to 16 inches up and down,” said Ebner.

Loose connections are a hazard too.  Screws and connectors should be checked for rust and corrosion.

Improper spacing between railings and steps, also pose risks.

“They should be closer together. You can get your head stuck in there, or a kid could you know,” said Ebner.

Deck Evaluation Checklist

http://www.nadra.org/Deck_Evaluation_Form.pdf

Consumer Checklist

http://www.nadra.org/NADRA_DSM_Checklist.pdf

April 23rd, 2013

May is Deck Safety Month ®

In 2006 NADRA, The North American Deck and Railing Association declared May as Deck Safety Month®. NADRA’s Deck safety program is an effort to improve deck safety awareness!

Here are some helpful ways to promote Deck Safety during the month of May! Please call NADRA direct with any questions you may have: 215.679.4884 or email: Info@NADRA.org. We are here to help!

Tips to Promote Deck Safety Awareness: Download the PDF now to learn ways to spread the word! Click HERE.

Visit NADRA’s Deck Safety Webpage for links to the Deck Safety Month® Video, Deck Evaluation Form & The Consumer Checklist

*** Exclusive Offer to NADRA Members: 

The association is now producing professional quality, custom videos for NADRA members. The video itself can be customized with your logo, contact information and photos.

Help spread the word about Deck Safety Awareness!

 

Pictures and text are no longer enough to stand out. That’s why video can have dramatic effect on point-of-sale conversation rates for products, services as well as provide significant boost in search engine rankings. Get noticed on listing sites and FaceBook!

 

  • High definition file! Good for online, HD TV, or a projector!
  • Add to your YouTube channel
  • Embed the video in your website or blog!
  • Add video to your social media pages
  • Drive visitors to your website
Get started today by calling: 1.888.623.7248 or Email: Info@NADRA.org

Custom Videos Start at Just $99

A very Special Thank you to Fiberon for Sponsoring Deck Safety Month 2013!
May 15th, 2012

New NADRA Video Educates Consumers about Deck Safety Month®

May 15, 2012 - Quakertown, PA | in 2006 NADRA, The North American Deck and Railing Association declared May as Deck Safety Month®. NADRA’s Deck safety program is an effort to save lives and prevent injuries.

After 6 years of promoting May as Deck Safety Month®, the association decided on a new method of reaching the masses this year. The new video was produced using images and text to drive a strong message to consumers about NADRA’s Check Your Deck® evaluation forms and the 10-point checklist. The video can be found on NADRA’s website at www.NADRA.org. The association posted the video to their YouTube channel found under NADRAYT and to their Social Media fan pages.

Michael Beaudry, Executive VP of NADRA states, “Our number one priority to the public is to ensure that the decks they and their families enjoy are safe. NADRA takes this responsibility seriously, and has created campaigns and education programs and certifications for home inspectors, code officials, engineers, architects, builders, distributors, lumberyards and manufacturers to improve proper installation practices along with checklists and safety awareness information for consumers to follow.”

The video can be used in making the consumer aware of the necessity of choosing a professional deck contractor, providing regular maintenance and inspection, and knowing the limits of the deck structure.

Read the rest of this entry »

May 15th, 2012

May 15, 2012 | There’s a lot of information out there on the web about backyard safety, from those aimed at providing “parenting advice” to medical websites aimed at keeping bandages on the shelf.  Another such source is the International Code Council (ICC), the publisher of our nations leading model construction codes. In the big scheme of things, decks are a small part of our built environment.  With ICC providing codes and standards for large commercial complexes, like hotels and retail centers, it’s nice when our industry of backyard decks gets some attention…and not just in new code provisions.  For Building Safety Month, May of every year, ICC is focusing attention on decks and outdoor living…a good sign that our industry is vibrant, growing and important to our culture.

The article behind this link provides a nice call to owners and property managers that decks don’t last forever, or may have been built substandard to begin with.  Too many of our fellow Americans don’t realize the need to regularly maintain and inspect their decks…and that means more than a swipe of a staining rag.  They often dismiss the very real hazards that backyard decks, grills and pools inadvertently create for us.  Public services messages like this, from non-profit organizations, are there for our benefit and our neighbor’s benefit.  Take a read, get ideas, get inspired and share this message.  Just forward the link.

http://www.iccsafe.org/safety/Pages/Backyard.aspx

 

April 25th, 2012

April 24, 2012 | Why would a deck builder be so afraid of trying a new material for his next project? Isn’t being up on the latest technology a dream come true. Perhaps, but are you taking risk in the process? Some guys I know would say yes to that. They would no sooner use a new product then throw themselves off a bridge. Some I know embrace the new stuff and love it. I have been both of those guys. With a few years under my belt and input from so many of my counterparts, my stance is that I will try a new product in a limited application until some time passes and I am reassured that it will last. What about those new nifty labor warranties? I am a huge advocate for that and it does help me to decide how much if any of a new product I will sell. But let’s dive into this a little more.

Read the rest of this entry »

March 12th, 2012

March 12, 2012 | Decks are a great “value add” for residents, but property managers face plenty of risks—including having a deck collapse—if their deck isn’t regularly inspected and maintained. It’s happening more frequently than many property managers and homeowners realize. Between 2003 and 2007, the Consumer Product Safety Commission reported 224,740 injuries caused by outdoor decks and porches. “What’s happening across this country is an epidemic at this point,” says Michael Beaudry, executive vice president of the North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA), adding that “in most cases if a deck fails, it’s a matter of neglect.”

The Ledger Connection

Common deck failures include a stair collapsing or a railing giving way. Of all the parts of a deck, “the most notoriously overlooked has been the ledger connection,” says Glenn Mathewson, a former deck builder and technical advisor to NADRA and International Code Council-certified Master Code Professional. The ledger connection is the board that connects the deck to a home or property, which can rot away, causing the deck to completely collapse. But, adds Mathewson, “poor construction and a lack of standards for construction is a large contributor to the problem.”

Not maintaining and regularly inspecting the deck, especially the ledger, puts your deck at risk for a collapse—and puts your occupants at risk for injury. “The lack of maintenance and the lack of knowledge of poor condition of the materials would be a due-diligence risk,” Mathewson says. “It would be like allowing the paint to peel off a house, but with much more drastic results.”

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