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A Helical Story

This past September I had the opportunity to work with Chance, a division of Hubbell, helping tell the story of how their helical piles are giving new life and safety to existing homes at the Jersey Shore. What I found were homeowners who were visibly emotional about this product since for many it is their only solution in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

Bob Calcogano in his newly renovated and raised living room. Lavellette, NJ. September, 2013. Click images to enlarge.
Bob Calcogano in his newly renovated and raised living room. Lavellette, NJ. September, 2013. Click images to enlarge.
Bob outside his house which has been raised off of ground level. The helical piles are encased within concrete.
Bob outside his house which has been raised off of ground level. The helical piles are encased within concrete. Lavellette, NJ. September, 2013.
Homeowner, Barry Wintle, reflects on Hurricane Sandy. His new helical piles are on the left encased in stainless steel.
Homeowner, Barry Wintle, reflects on Hurricane Sandy. His helical piles are on the left encased in stainless steel. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.

Helical piles are extremely strong and can be sunk to depths of 50′ or more. But what’s more surprising is that they can be created with almost no clearance and very little room to move. For homeowners looking to raise a house to meet post-Sandy flood codes helical piles, unlike wooden piles which need more space to install, are a house saver.

A Chadwick Beach house raised and ready for helical piles. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
A Chadwick Beach house raised and ready for helical piles. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
Architect, Paul Amelchencko. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
Architect, Paul Amelchencko. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
Holes are bored to install a helical pile. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
A hole is bored to install a helical pile. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
Initially, PVC pipe is used to contain the pile. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
Initially, PVC pipe is used to contain the pile. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
The PVC is sunk into the hole and grout is poured inside it. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
The PVC is sunk into the hole and grout is poured inside it. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
South Jersey Helical Piles foreman, Ray Kozoil. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
South Jersey Helical Piles foreman, Ray Kozoil. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
With grout poured the filled PVC pile is pushed into the earth and a new segment is readied. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
With the grout poured, the filled PVC pile is pushed into the earth and a new segment is readied. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
Pretty amazing that a pile driver or a full size backhoe is not needed. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.
Pretty amazing that a pile driver or a full size backhoe is not needed. Chadwick Beach, NJ. September, 2013.

An assignment like this is run, run, run. So, it was zoom lenses and a Canon Speedlite when needed at 1 – 2 stops below ambient.

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