Sunbelt Rentals Rushes in to Help Salvage the Aftermath of Hurricane Florence


In 2018, Hurricane Florence left more than $24 billion worth of damage to homes, businesses, cities and towns. Some areas received more than three feet of water, and more than 2,600 commercial buildings were submerged by at least a foot of water. The category one hurricane made landfall with over 90 mph roaring winds. Thousands of businesses suffered at her brutality. A large lumberyard was one of her victims. Their building was damaged, and the company needed a new facility immediately to protect its lumber. With their rapid response and prepared available inventory, a Sunbelt Rentals temporary fabric structure was a perfect remedy.

The Challenge

A lumberyard located in Hurricane Florence’s path was badly damaged by the storm. The company needed to immediately relocate all of its lumber to a new facility. Destruction was widespread, and it was difficult to access the location of the lumberyard. There were reports of houses, boats and trees blocking the main roads. The team was faced with dangerous and difficult maneuvers in directing the delivery truck through the small side streets. Project Manager, Ethan Mathias said that overcoming obstacles in arriving on the site was the biggest challenge and took the most work.

The client’s needs included a structure that could:

  • Remain on site for twelve months
  • A structure to store large amounts of lumber
  • Immediate installation
  • Expert care in installing the structure amid difficult circumstances

The Solution

Sunbelt Rentals monitors the weather and prepares for natural disasters by maintaining inventory and building frames ahead of the storm. The crews also ready themselves for immediate dispatch. This is Sunbelt Rentals' rapid response. Sunbelt Rentals was originally contacted on October 18th, and the crews arrived to begin installation on November 5th. With the surrounding damage and both local residents as well as relief workers occupying the hotels, the installation crew was forced to drive 70 miles each day from their hotel to the jobsite. Their commitment in offering a quick turnaround and an immediate solution for the client remained the installers’ top priority. The lumberyard rented a parking lot a few miles away from their original location to house the temporary structure. Due to the size of the structure, it was installed on the asphalt parking lot but also covered the gravel and dirt surrounding area. Sunbelt Rentals installed a 50 foot x 296 foot Lowsberger 300 temporary clear span structure. They added two 16 foot manual magnetic cargo doors to allow for fork lifts to operate in moving the lumber.

Sunbelt Rentals' solution included the following features:

  • Sunbelt Rentals' Lowsberger 300 (50 ft. x 296 ft.)
  • 16-foot custom uprights
  • Two 16 ft. Manual magnetic cargo doors to allow for fork life operation
  • LED lighting package
  • Four single steel doors
  • Expert project managers, designers and an expert installation team

The Result

Because of Sunbelt Rentals' diligence and preparedness, they were able to immediately deploy and offer assistance. The temporary clear span structure was designed, transported and installed in a little over two weeks. As one of the first to arrive on the scene after the storm, the crew had to navigate their own path as the main roads were all blocked with debris. The Sunbelt Rentals team persisted and successfully provided the lumberyard a new facility. The lumberyard was able to protect their inventory and avoid further destruction and loss.

The Takeaways

With a large inventory and foresight in planning for natural disasters, Sunbelt Rentals is able to offer a rapid response to their customers. Sunbelt Rentals' installation team immediately deployed to the devastated area. Sunbelt Rentals remains dedicated to offering customers the most cost-efficient and timely solution for their project or need. The team of forward thinkers prepares for the worst, thus offering their customers quick turnarounds and readily available solutions. Call Sunbelt Rentals today. They are ready and waiting to help.

Topics: Emergency Shelters