Here is an unedited excerpt from an email I received from California on
Monday September 14, 2020
You may be wondering about our dome in the Valley Fire,
which first erupted about 1-1/2 miles from the dome.
The fire here and there burned up to the narrow cement skirt around the dome.
Boulders nearby are blackened, but the dome is just tinted slightly gray from the ash.
John had mowed our terrain with clairvoyant obsession in the months before the fire,
but neighbors who put out spot fires and the fire crew that made passes through here
pretty much agreed that the dome (here on the boundary of Cleveland National Forest,
underneath the epic conflagration of Gaskill Peak) would have withstood the fire,
and the cabin would have gone down.
The picture below tells the story better than words can describe.
After the Alpine dome home was built for John and Jean Maria,
They asked me if I could write an email that would help them with getting home insurance.
I wrote the following:
Hello Jean Maria,
I am wondering if it would help to refer to your home as an upgraded more firesafe home
rather than a non-standard design...
Your home has two layers of non-combustible sheeting on the entire exterior (roof and walls).
5/8" Type X firecode non-combustible gypsum sheeting with a one hour fire rating
was installed under a layer of non-combustible composite cement exterior finish siding.
Layers of Type X firecode sheetrock are often used to inhibit fire spread in both residential and commercial buildings.
Together these two layers of non-combustible sheet materials make your home extremely fire safe.
In addition, your home has no projecting eves which could catch heat and cause a standardly designed home to burn up.
Also your home is round and has a very large non-combustible solid concrete perimeter wall at ground level.
Any fire that approaches your home would burn around your fire safe round home and would not cause your home to catch fire.
These design elements, non-existant with most standard home designs, all act together to make your shielded dome home
EXTREMELY FIRE SAFE.
Can you please forward this email to a home insurance adjuster or agent.
California does have a discrimination in housing law.
You should be able to construct and insure a home that is
"more fire safe than a conventional home with fire prone eaves and a vented attic".
I am from California. I grew up in a fire prone area of Northern California.
I designed your home to be as fire safe as possible.
Sincerely, Wil Fidroeff
Below is an "under construction" photo of the Alpine Dome Home
taken in 2008 as two layers of "fire shielding materials" (one inch thick) were being installed.
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