Florence, S.C. – (November 1, 2012) – The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) today awarded a FORTIFIED for Safer Business™ designation to the new Pee Dee Nephrology medical office in Florence, S.C.

The 9,700 sq. ft. Pee Dee Nephrology office is the first building in S.C. and the first medical office in the country to earn the FORTIFIED for Safer Business designation; it is the second FORTIFIED for Safer Business designated building in the U.S. The Pee Dee Nephrology building was designed and built by the Carrell Group, headquartered in Little River, S.C.

IBHS’ FORTIFIED for Safer Business program with voluntary superior construction standards for new light commercial buildings offers a package of improvements that greatly increase a building’s durability and resilience to natural hazards prevalent in the area where it is being built. The Pee Dee building is designed to be more resistant to property damage caused by hurricanes, high winds, earthquakes, fires/wildfires, lightning and hail.

“This project is another example of the Carrell Group’s commitment to deliver the highest quality buildings to their clients,” said Fred Malik, IBHS FORTIFED program manager. “They have been building FORTIFIED homes for years in North and South Carolina and now they are bringing superior disaster resistant design and construction to their commercial projects.”

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Achieving a FORTIFIED for Safer Business designation increases the likelihood that businesses will remain open, or re-open as quickly as possible, following a natural disaster, which is a time of significant need for customers, employees, and the community.

“As a builder in the Carolinas for 25 years, we’ve seen many disasters, from hurricanes to wildfires, destroy many homes and buildings,” said Bruce Carrell, president of the Carrell Group. “Once we became familiar and comfortable with the engineering and construction involved in IBHS’ FORTIFIED programs, we were sold on the plan. Today, nearly 80 percent of our new clients in South Carolina are upgrading their homes to FORTIFIED construction standards.”

“In making such a large investment in our new building, we wanted to do it right the first time,” said Dr. Inderpal Singh, partner with Pee Dee Nephrology. “So, we are excited to have the most ‘disaster-resistant’ commercial building that IBHS and Carrell Group know how to build from the ground up.”

IBHS is a leading national expert on preparing for, and repairing and rebuilding structures after, a catastrophe to make them more disaster-resistant. To arrange an interview with IBHS, contact Joseph King at 813-675-1045/813-442-2845, jking@ibhs.org or via direct message on Twitter @jsalking.

Visit www.DisasterSafety.org for more information about how to make your buildings more resistant to a variety of disasters, big and small. Follow IBHS on Twitter at @DisasterSafety and on Facebook.

Contact: Joseph King
Media Relations Manager, IBHS
(813) 675-1045 (o); (813) 442-2845 (c)
Twitter: disastersafety

WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather


The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) is an independent, nonprofit, research and communications organization supported by the property insurance industry. The IBHS mission is to conduct objective, scientific research in order to identify and promote effective actions that strengthen homes, businesses, and communities against natural disasters and other causes of loss.