Free Coatings Offer Goes Begging
Kevin Klotz's generous offer of free coatings and labor to help victims of Hurricane Sandy has provoked a surprising response: None.
The president of Pennsylvania-based Coatings For Industry Inc. (CFI) had thought that a densely populated region crushed by more than $50 billion in storm damage could use some paint—especially if it’s free, and comes with free labor.
But so far, Klotz has had no takers. Giving away the floor coatings has proved much harder than he thought.
Doing their Part
After Sandy flattened swaths of New Jersey and New York at the end of October, Klotz decided that he wanted to do his part for the recovery effort by supplying coating products to townships or public buildings severely damaged by the storm.
His Souderton, PA-based company is a direct-to-contractor supplier of specialized, high-technology industrial, architectural, and aerospace coatings, including the ALSEAL, Siloxseal, Urethabond, and Wearcoat brands.
But despite repeated calls to nearly a dozen affected municipalities along the New Jersey Shore and in Staten Island, NY, and to several impacted facilities and nonprofit organizations, CFI says it has yet to receive a single response—let alone, a request for assistance.
|Coatings For Industry|
CFI produces high-performance industrial, architectural and aerospace coatings.
Even ads on Craigslist in New York and New Jersey and posts on Twitter have yielded no takers, the company says.
Because CFI and its network of application contractors only work in the commercial arena, it’s seeking to assist a public or nonprofit institution, such as a school, community center, senior center, city hall, library, museum, or possibly even a boardwalk.
“I can only imagine they’re still a bit shell-shocked by all that they need to do, or were simply too overwhelmed to return a phone call,” says Klotz.
Meshing Needs and Donors
Of course, Klotz’s company is not the only one to have offered help after Sandy, and coordinating disaster assistance is a daunting task.
Since Sandy received a Major Disaster Declaration on Oct. 30, the Federal Emergency Management Agency says it has deployed 4,135 personnel and processed nearly 523,000 assistance registrations. FEMA is also running 27 disaster recovery centers (14 in New York and 13 in New Jersey); the new registration deadline for disaster assistance is Feb. 27 in New York.
|Liz Roll / FEMA|
Sandy demolished the historic boardwalk in Atlantic City, NJ, in late October.
On Feb. 7, 100 days after the storm hit New Jersey, FEMA issued this Sandy assistance update:
Allegheny County, PA, "easily removed" more than a decade's worth of graffiti from CFI's 15-year-old coating system on the Homestead High-Level Bridge near Pittsburgh, a project official said.
Seeking Needy Facilities
Even with all that assistance, Klotz says, his company is still ready to help. Any municipal administrator, construction manager, purchasing agent or facilities manager that needs to replace flooring as a result of Sandy and is in need of epoxy or urethane primers or sealants, epoxy or urethane topcoats, anti-wear coatings, decorative or anti-slip floor coatings or other industrial coatings may email CFI or call the company at 215-723-0919.
“It’s perplexing that an offer of free product and labor to apply it would go ignored,” says Klotz. “Nonetheless, we’re still hoping to locate a facility in need.”