In emergency conditions, usually caused by natural disasters such as fires, earthquakes and floods, one of the main problems to be managed is that of housing to be made available for those who have had irreparable damage to them or are in any case not accessible.
It therefore becomes necessary to offer shelter to the population that, after an initial phase of temporary accommodation, needs a personal living environment. In such situations, emergency modular structures can be used, consisting of buildings intended for those left without a home. They are usually temporary but not necessarily, because for some time modular structures have been increasingly used for the construction of residential complexes due to their characteristics of repeated modules, so simpler and faster to build.
Characteristics of temporary modular structures
The structural characteristics of these devices depend on the post-disaster assistance phase that, after an initial period of use of tents, caravans and containers, then turns to real prefabricated homes, whose assembly can be completed in a very short time.
The temporary housing modules, which meet the essential needs of first shelter, are generally very small. Nevertheless, they contain all the necessary typical rooms of a normal accommodation, to guarantee an acceptable life quality.
The design of these emergency housing units is considered by many to be a true example of micro-architecture. It is characterized by a high level of experimentation, which involves innovative structures and materials.
- One of the main priorities is the installation’s speed and therefore the use of semifinished and partly made materials.
- The principle of modularity is connected both to the housing system’s modularity and to the production standardization. Those are the main features of this type of housing and now they begin to be applied to permanent residences.
- Other necessary requirements for the production of emergency modules are related to the ease of transport, the speed of construction and cost containment (both for materials and labor).
- A strong eco-sustainable mark would be useful, where the recycling of materials becomes a substantial need considering the temporary nature of these constructions
As mentioned, one of the most significant needs of the housing modules is their speed of construction, that implies the use of prefabricated structures and electrical systems partly already built.
Electrical systems with prewired conduits
The installation of an electrical system is one of the activities that take the most time for operators away from site, as well as one of the most risky.
In order to avoid any damage, time and experience are always required for inserting the cables inside the corrugated protection conduits.
Currently, there is a valid alternative that allows doing an excellent job saving time and money: the prewired conduits. They consist of corrugated structures in which the electrical cables have already been inserted, according to the customer’s needs.
These devices offer the opportunity to skip the pulling of the cables, one of the longest phases of the entire electrical installation process.
Safety is one the most considerable advantages since the prewired cables must not be touched by the operators, except at the moment of connection. Furthermore, the cables, being inside the conduit, remain intact in all the processing phase in opposition of what could happen during the pulling phase for unprotected wires.
Why lay prewired conduits in emergency housing modules
The electrical system is a fundamental part of the entire project when a prefabricated emergency house is built together with home automation etc.
One of the problems that arise in these cases is related to the construction materials, usually wood which is not very resistant to high temperatures and sparks. In the emergency modules, wood is one of the main components of the structure and therefore the possibility of using prewired conduits guarantees much higher safety standards, as it minimizes the risk of flammability.
In addition, prewired conduits also offer other advantages:
Relating to cost management, it is important to underline that prewired conduits, although having a slightly higher cost than the empty ones, require a much more limited manpower, with a rather significant containment of costs.
Overall, the tracing of the system is carried out in a particularly simplified way since the cables are already inserted and there is no need for any cable puller.
The arrangement of the system with prewired conduits limits any type of intervention on the modular structures to a minimum. Due to the nature of the materials (which are not bricks), they could be damaged during the installation phase.
Bearing in mind all these variables, it is therefore evident that the use of prewired conduits becomes an almost obligatory choice for structures.