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The summer of 2008 in Eastern Iowa will be known for one thing: historic flooding. Floodwater reached beyond the 500-year floodplains as rivers toppled their banks by more than 20 feet in some locations.
The Iowa River near Coralville crested 9 ft above flood stage and remained above flood level for weeks. Even though the Coralville Heartland Inn sits one foot above the 100-year floodplain, “water flooded the first floor of our hotel for nearly 10 days,” mentions Joe Minard, owner of the Heartland Inn.
While insurance covered the contents and structural damage, Heartland Inn had nothing to cover the loss of business. Located near the University of Iowa, “this is a significant hotel with high occupancy rates, especially in the summer,” adds Minard. Nearly 30% of the hotel’s rooms were inundated with floodwater.
With no service contract for flood damage, the Heartland Inn had to quickly select the right restoration contractor and equipment, but Minard was overwhelmed with the number of contractors from around the country, offering different drying techniques and philosophies. He selected Dream Steam Carpet Clean, Inc., an IIRCRC-certified restoration contractor who offered a quick and unique drying technique.
While Dream Steam was well-versed in all phases of restoration work, the sheer scope of the flooding throughout the large, honeycombed structure presented unique challenges. “There was 3.5 to 4.5 feet of water throughout the entire first floor, which included 55 guest rooms, two elevator shafts, a pool, lobby and meeting room,” explains Mike Hambly, president of Dream Steam.