They’re called disaster resistant homes for a reason
ICF disaster resistant homes have been tested to withstand projectile debris traveling over 100 mph, so it’s safe to say that ICF homes are literally bulletproof. They have been known to survive explosions and car accidents as well.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, there are approximately 20,000 vehicle-into-building crashes every year in the United States. Over the past 15 years, at least three separate ICF homes have experienced accidents of this type. Check out this article from ICF Builder to read about the results and see photos.
An ICF solution can be engineered for any seismic zone to be highly resistant to earthquakes and other shifts. In general, however, ICF disaster resistant homes are strong enough to resist lateral forces caused either by seismic waves or heavy winds.
The key to keeping ICF sturdy in seismic zones is the reinforcing steel. This article from ICF Builder explains how ICF engineering kept the damage from the 8.8 earthquake in Chile from being significantly worse in 2010.
FEMA recognizes ICFs for the construction of safe rooms and community shelters.
In 2014, a natural gas explosion shook East Harlem in NYC when it killed 8 and injured 70. The incident completely leveled 2 5-story buildings while shattering every window in the surrounding block. Meanwhile, the building next to where the explosion occurred had no structure damage and everyone evacuated safely. You can read more about this story and the aftereffects in this article.
ICF disaster resistant homes are also be protected from radiation. Concrete can stop all kinds of radiation, including alpha, beta and gamma rays. That’s actually the reason why nuclear plants use concrete to build their containment vessels.
Check out this demonstration to see how well an ICF wall holds up against an air cannon.
Here is another video from 2003. In this demonstration, you can see how an ICF structure survives a military blast experiment. This production came from Amvic, an ICF company that GreenBlock Development Group works with.
Ready to build your disaster resistant home? Contact us today so we can help you start planning.