ERA Introduces Hail-Protection Performance White Paper

April 24, 2007
This information is especially relevant as storm season begins

The Alexandria, VA-based EPDM Roofing Association (ERA) announced that it is now offering a white paper which reviews the hail-protection performance of several roofing systems, especially an EPDM (ethylene propylene diene terpolymer) roofing membrane.

The paper, titled “Comparative Performance of EPDM Rubber Roofing Membrane as Protection Against Hail Damage,” was written by Ric Vitiello, president at Benchmark Services Inc., a forensic roof consulting company based in Louisville, KY, that specializes exclusively in roof-failure analysis. It can be found on ERA’s website at (

The information in the paper is based on personal research and site studies conducted by Vitiello since 1989 while serving as a roof consultant to insurance companies, individuals, and corporations. The paper notes a rise in occurrence of hail storms and reviews the performance of several roofing materials in maintaining their protective qualities when facing significant hail fall.

“As stated in the paper, protecting against hail damage is one of the ultimate tests of any roofing system,” said ERA’s immediate past chairman Nick Shears, vice president of sales and marketing, Carlisle SynTec Inc. “This paper provides cogent analysis of the superior performance of EPDM as compared to other materials, based on the personal experiences of a leading industry expert.”

Ric Vitiello has more than 25 years of experience in the roofing industry. Among his professional credentials, he is a professional member of the Roof Consultants Institute (RCI), member and trained hail and wind damage investigator with the Roofing Industry Committee on Weather Issues (RICOWI), and Past President and Co-Founder of the Greater Louisville Roofing Contractors Association, now merged with the Kentucky Roofing Contractors Association (KRCA).

“This white paper is especially timely since the spring and summer months are fast approaching,” says Jim Hoff, chairman at the EPDM Roofing Association (ERA) and vice president of technology and product development at Firestone Building Products Co. “Since a greater section of the country now seems to be receiving hail fall and we are seeing more storms with larger hail, it is more important than ever that roofing professionals take appropriate steps to protect against hail damage.”

This information was provided by the EPDM Roofing Association, the first trade association solely representing the manufacturers of EPDM single-ply roofing products and their leading suppliers. ERA provides technical and research support to the public and the construction industry, and communicates the longstanding attributes, consistency, and the value proposition of EPDM rubber membrane roofing materials. For more information, visit (

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