Day: September 13, 2017

UA Researchers Demonstrate Debris Canon

University of Alabama students and faculty in the College of Engineering tested FEMA approved storm shelter wall panels using their custom-built debris canon on September 13, 2017.

This demonstration is part of an ongoing research endeavor to better understand the effect of wind-borne debris during severe weather events on structures. This data can be used to help build cheaper, more robust homes and businesses.

The Alabama Center for Insurance Information and Research (ACIIR) sponsored construction of the cannon and works closely with the engineering department to use the data across different fields.

The cannon fired an 8-ft long wooden 2×4 at 100 miles per hour for this demonstration, but the canon can be loaded with any debris that may be a projectile during a severe weather event.

ACIIR Executive Director Lars Powell is available to discuss the implications of the debris canon testing and its relation to ACIIR research endeavors.

View the story at The Tuscaloosa News or WBRC News.

View the photo gallery at The Tuscaloosa News.

Contact ACIIR at or (205) 348-4513.

ACIIR Director Interviewed on Insurance Market Changes

The Alabama Center for Insurance Information and Research (ACIIR) Executive Director Lars Powell spoke to WBRC Fox 6 News about the possibility of change in insurance markets, tips for shopping around, and what questions to ask an insurance agent on September 13, 2017.

Powell spoke to reporter, Ugochi Iloka, about the research the center is doing to encourage, educate, and facilitate smart insurance choices for homeowners.

“Our number one piece of advice is to shop around,” said Powell. “We can’t reiterate this enough.”

Viewers can find the full story here. Additional information on the Alabama Coastal Insurance Shopper’s Guide and Top 10 Homeowners Insurance Questions can be found on the ACIIR website here.

Powell, an insurance expert at the University of Alabama, is available to discuss the effects of severe weather on insurance markets and consumers.

View the full story here.

Contact ACIIR at or (205) 348-4513.