After an accident during a house raising in Little Egg Harbor seriously injured three workers and a similar accident in Highlands
caused a house being raised to slide
off its foundation and into a neighboring home, a New Jersey state
legislator is proposing a number of regulations that he says will make
the process of raising houses safer.
record number of homes statewide are being raised since Superstorm
Sandy struck, and with the impending rise in flood insurance rates for
homes in flood zones that are not elevated, many more are expected.
"This work is not for
amateurs," said state Assemblyman John Amodeo, who introduced a
bill on Monday that includes regulations on experience, equipment and
insurance that must be carried by home raising contractors.
need to be put into place now if we are going to
avoid shoddy work and fatal accidents," said Amodeo, an Atlantic County
Republican who is a retired licensed crane operator and a member of
Operating Engineers Local 825. "This will increase safety for everyone,
and get the job done correctly."
Under Amodeo's proposal, any
contractor offering services to elevate homes would need to be registered with the state Division
of Consumer Affairs as a home elevation contractor. To obtain the registration
status, the contractor would need to have at least two years of field experience
under the guidance of another experienced home elevation contractor.
This bill would also require
all home elevation contractors to use a unified jacking machine to complete each
Unified jacking machines are capable of lifting the entire bulk of a
structure in a simultaneous, synchronized manner, said a statement from Amodeo. They have "proven to be the most
reliable, least accident-prone means of elevating buildings," the statement said.
bill also requires contractors performing home elevations to carry a
minimum of $1 million in commercial general liability insurance and
$500,000 worth of insurance to cover the contents of customers' homes.