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Disaster Research Lab for Business and Home Safety to be Built in South Carolina

Posted on 16 Sep 2009

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Construction is getting started on a new South Carolina facility insurers hope will do for home building what a similar testing facility in Virginia has done for car safety.

The Institute for Business and Home Safety is breaking ground Wednesday on its new research center in Chester County.

The lab will be big enough to hold a full house. Organizers say the $27 million facility will allow scientists to see exactly what winds from a Category 3 hurricane, hail and wind-blown fire do to home construction.

Researchers also will be able to let houses sit in the elements to see how aging affects their ability to withstand different weather issues.

Insurance officials and local lawmakers are expected to attend the ceremony.

Founding insurance companies and organizations that have made this new facility possible through their financial contributions include: Alfa Insurance, Allstate Insurance Company, American Agricultural Insurance Company, American Family Insurance, American Insurance Association, Amica Insurance, Andover Companies, AAA-The Auto Club Group, AAA Northern California, Nevada & Utah, Auto-Owners Insurance Company, Bankers Insurance Group, COUNTRY Financial, Enumclaw Insurance Group, Erie Insurance, Farm Bureau Mutual Group, Farmers Insurance Group, Florida Farm Bureau Insurance Group, Gen Re, Guy Carpenter, The Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company, HomeWise, Interinsurance Exchange of the Automobile Club, IPCRe Limited, Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, The Main Street America Group, MetLife Auto & Home, Mississippi Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Company, Munich Re, Munich Re America, National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, Nationwide Insurance, Norfolk & Dedham Group, OneBeacon Insurance Group, Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, Quincy Mutual, RenaissanceRe Risk Sciences Foundation, South Carolina Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, South Carolina Wind & Hail Underwriting Association, State Farm Insurance Companies, Swiss Re, Travelers, USAA, Virginia Farm Bureau Insurance.