FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Regarding asbestos, my home (or office building, or condo) was built last year. asbestos isn’t even used in construction materials anymore, right? so i don’t need to perform testing, right?Wrong. Asbestos testing is required by Federal EPA regulations regardless of when a building is built, due to the continued (and sometimes inadvertent) use of globally-sourced (read: imported) construction materials from countries where asbestos-containing materials may still be used. Remember Chinese Drywall? The same idea still applies.
Did you know? Per federal and Florida state law, an asbestos survey is required before any renovation or demolition activity begins. A copy of the survey report must be kept on-site during renovations, and a copy must be attached to the written notification for demolitions. Asbestos surveys must be performed by a State Licensed asbestos consultant. Pinellas County (Clearwater, St. Petersburg, etc.), in particular, is known for being very strict about enforcing these laws. Other neighboring municipalities are quickly catching up, however.
How are you handling projects during COVID-19?One of the unexpected positive outcomes of the COVID-19 pandemic was that it showed us just how much we could get accomplished without being in the office, and even without having a desk. We’ve come to specialize in mobile platforms with minimal footprint requirements; if we don’t absolutely have to be somewhere in person, then we’ll find a workaround for equivalent results minus the related travel or staging expenses.
Recent tech advances have aided our efforts in this area. We use mobile laptops and tablets instead of desktop computers, and collaborative viewing and editing technology instead of endless emailing files back and forth. Instead of rigging a swing stage for inspections, we’d prefer to use a drone and remote-viewing in order to make the best use of everyone’s time and effort.
Of course, certain things have to be seen and done in person. Besides being an FAA certificated Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) remote pilot and commercial operator, our founder Andrew Schrader is also an instrument-rated pilot and able to fly himself to jobsites or buildings on short notice—even in a post-disaster environment when commercial flights are hard to come by.
What types of clients do you work with?Our customers are most often commercial building owners, community association managers, insurance companies and property management companies in need of construction administration and engineering services. Additionally, we work with select legal firms who may be in need of expert witness consultation.
How do you select which projects to work on?Not every job or client is a good fit for us, and our engineering firm is not a good fit for every job or client—and that’s okay. We have no interest in working with clients who are shopping for engineering consultants based solely on price. We will never be the least-expensive option, but we think that we can be the best value option.
We have no interest in projects where something other than long-term, sustainable solutions are being considered. We don’t deal with Band-Aid solutions. We also have no interest in working with clients who are interested in something other than the truth, when it comes to legal opinions.
WHAT TYPES OF SERVICES DO YOU OFFER ?We offer Asbestos Testing and Consultation, Structural Surveys of Existing Conditions on Building Exterior Envelopes, Production of Engineered Permit Drawings, Engineering Specifications and Project Manuals, Production of Construction Contract Documents (for final review by client legal counsel), Construction Administration, Construction Observations and Inspections for General Conformance, Expert Witness Engineering Consultation, Insurance Claim Investigation, and Remodel/Addition and Structural Repair Consultation services.
WHAT’S IN STORE FOR THE FUTURE?Recon Response Engineering plans to expand our offering of services outside the state of Florida to other southern states including Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana and Texas.
Going forward, our intention is to be the very best at a handful of services. We recognize that we can’t be the best at everything. As we grow, we will re-examine the consultation types we offer and begin to eliminate services that aren’t 100% crucial to our business. In this way we will avoid service/feature creep and maintain laser-focus on dominating our handful of core services.