The Winston Land-Locked Floating House (WLFH) utilizes cutting edge technology that allows a house to rise and fall with flood waters!
Click on the above picture to view the details of this exciting, new and innovative housing technology!
Click on the above picture to view the details of this exciting, new and innovative housing technology!
Now, in the 21st century we can put men on the moon, but people are still protecting their homes and belongings with sand bags!
Winston International Corporation, a designer of systems for building and transporting manufactured housing, has designed and developed innovative technology, which protects people, their housing, automobiles, and all of their precious belongings against devastating floods. This is particularly important in the face of the floods in the southeastern United States, and more States within our Country today.
This patented technology has been designed by professional architects, marine and structural engineers. The invention is called the Winston Landlocked Floating House. The system is composed of telescoping piers set in concrete anchors supporting a catamaran floatation base attached to one, two, or three story buildings. These structures will rise above any recorded flood, and float back to their original positions as the flood recedes. This technology has been fully tested by accredited testing laboratories using computer testing methods. Test results state that “any Winston house can be analyzed for any geographical area to withstand floods up to five feet above the recorded 500 year level.”
The Winston “MISSION” is to convince the public and the builders of the world that future flood disasters now have a viable solution. The opportunity to save victims and taxpayers billions of dollars is now at hand. We encourage our readers to bookmark and browse our site and see the verifiable information that proves how one man’s vision can solve the heartbreak of flooding disasters.
A Letter to the previous flood victims and recent flood victims in America
This letter is to explain why technology that could save their houses, their cars, and belongings has never been allowed in the flood plains. In 1993 the Winston team developed a house that can never be flooded. We took the preliminary drawings to Washington DC and showed the core of engineers and HUD our proposal. They said that it would save 70% of the flood damage in America. FEMA's reaction to Winston's preliminary drawings of the land locked floating house technology wasthat “this housewill worktoo well”and that they will never allow it to be built in the floodplains. When asked by Mr. Hundley (Winston's representative in Washington, DC) what was FEMA's plan for dealing with the people already living in the floodplains, Mr. Oliver (FEMA's Chief Mitigation Engineer) replied that their plan was to hope for a really big flood that will wash everybody out of the floodplains?
Winston would not accept their refusal. We went to the congress and lobbied to have it put into law. We were successful in doing this on September 23, 1994. Congress wrote in the legislation that FEMA was to accommodate new technology to be used in the flood plains. After the legislation Winston thought that we had solved the problem with FEMA, but we were mistaken. FEMA refused to even allow the testing of this house in real form therefore Winston retained Pacific Labs to doComputer Simulation Testing on the house and it was highly successful. Pacific Labs was shocked by the results, proving that the house design actually performed better than expected. They retested it and the results were the same. The testing was done on a house floating in 20 ft of water (running at 5 feet/sec.), fully furnished, with 2 large vans (6,800 lbs each) in the attached garage with hurricane force winds against it;
During this time there were many senators and congress men writing to FEMA asking why this house hadn't been allowed to be tested. To answer the letters from congress FEMA wrote a 15 page evaluation on Winston's technology, which they had not seen or even contacted Winston about. After several years FEMA said that they would allow testing of the unit if it was uninhabitable. At the time Winston had many companies that were interesting in financing the prototype, but as soon as they were made aware of the false report they wouldn't fund us. In effect FEMA black balled us from the money market. FEMA realized that once the prototype was built and shown to the country they wouldn’t be able to stop this technology from being used in the flood plains. That was the point of the 15 page evaluation.
Winston truly believed in what John F. Kennedy stated in his 1961 Inaugural Address to the nation, "And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you - ask what you can do for your country." We never expected a government agency to stop us from helping our country.
Please read the chronological timeline below.
September 1993 ‑ Army Corps of Engineers reviews Landlocked Floating House design; states that this design can solve up to 70% of the "back‑bay" flood problems in the entire USA.
September 1993 ‑ Housing and Urban Development (HUD) reviews Floating House design; predicts that this design can save at least 70% of present flooding problems, particularly in the "back‑bay" areas.
November 15, 1993 ‑ Winston Team briefs FEMA and delivers promotional marketing package describing Landlocked Floating House.
November 22, 1993 ‑ 5 business days later, FEMA responds in letter to Winstonand rejects floating house concept as not in compliance with NFIP regulations.Sig:James Ross McKay. This is part of a letter that was written to us, “Since the proposed floating residential structure does not comply with the minimum NFIP requirements, any NFIP-participating community that permits this type of structure would be found in failure of enforcing the minimum requirements of the NFIP. Failure to enforce NFIP requirements may result in a community being placed on probation and subsequently suspended from the NFIP. Communities that are suspended or that do not participate in the NFIP are ineligible for most forms of federal disaster assistance and flood insurance policies within the community can not be renewed.”
September 23, 1994 ‑ President signs PL103-325, NFIRA into law, which contains Conferee's Report instructing FEMA to accommodate testing of "new technologies" that may "provide feasible means of floodproofing residential structures in flood-prone areas".
February 1995 - Senator Slade Gorton sends letter to FEMA stating "It is my understanding that this [PL 103-325, Reigle Community Development Banking] Act directs FEMA to be accommodating to testing".
May 31, 1995 - Winston has retained Pacific Testing Laboratories to demonstrate performance under extreme flood and wind conditions using Computer Simulation Testing on Floodproofing System for any configuration of Winston products including single and multi-story houses and apartment buildings.
July 21, 1995 - Working with Pacific Testing Laboratories, Winston's technical staff develops an Analysis of Flood Mitigation Factor Comparisons of WLFH and FEMA's published Methods of Retrofitting Flood-prone Structures.In every case, the WLFH was superior in performance to FEMA's methods and less costly.
October 1995 - Several US Senators and Representatives, after reviewing test results, have directed FEMA to cooperate with Winston in the production of prototypes.Others are following suit.
January 26, 1996 - Senator Patty Murray, Washington writes letter to FEMA Director Witt stating:"I gather that some at FEMA think it (WLFH) will not work.It was our intention that conclusions be the result of actual testing, not politically motivated speculation". and "Please send me --- the actual time-table for the testing of the Floating House, --- . A clear expression of FEMA's intentionto positively and helpfully carry out the directives contained in the language of the Conference Report --- should also be sent to the state and local communities providing whatever waivers of local zoning might be necessary ---- ".Senator Murray enclosed a copy of the January 25th Winston Memorandum.
February 12, 1996 - Senator Connie Mack, Florida writes letter to Director Witt demanding FEMA's reasons for not complying with the NFIP legislation [PL 103-325 ]requiring FEMA to accommodate construction of Floating House prototypes.Senator Mack enclosed a copy of the January 25th Winston Memorandum.
February 19, 1996 - Senator Hank Brown, Colorado, writes second letter urging FEMA to cooperate in the testing of the WLFH. Senator Brown enclosed a copy of the 1/25/96 Winston Memorandum.A total of 22 Senators have now written FEMA regarding their lack of adherence to PL 103-325.
May, 1996 - At the request of Senator Kit Bond-R, MO, Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee for HUD, VA, & Independent Agencies, Winston wrote a Memorandum of 3 questions to be addressed to Director Witt demanding why FEMA has not responded to Senators, Representatives, and the Conference Language of Public Law #103-325.
May 24, 1996 - After receipt and careful review of the Winston Memorandum of questions, these questions were asked and recorded in the closing hearings of the Senate.FEMA was given 45 days to answer these questions and inform the Senate of their intent "to be accommodating to the testing of such [floodproofing] technology."Senator Bond's3 questions to FEMA were:(1."Is FEMA encouraging the development or implementation of this [WLFH] or other similar new [floodproofing] technology?, (2."Are there existing FEMA policy priorities favoring flood mitigation practices such as relocation that preclude floodproofing activities such as the "floating house" concept?", and (3."In PL 103-325, language is included that 'Conferees are further aware that new technology may provide feasible means of floodproofing residential structures in flood-prone areas.The Conferees expect FEMA to be accommodating to the testing of such technologies.'If FEMA is not encouraging the development or implementation of 'innovative technology,' is FEMA frustrating it, either by policy preferences or conflicting authorities?"
June 27, 1996 - FEMA writes cover letter and a 15 page "Evaluation Report"to Senators who have demanded adherence to the NFIRA Conference Report.Virtually every statement made in the report was completely in error.The authors knew absolutely nothing of the Winston research, nor had they at any time made any effort to contact anyone connected with Winston technology for information.As a result of this unenlightened "evaluation", they refused to consider any kind of approval. FEMA refuses to vary their insistence on clinging to their outdated policies of "elevating and relocating" housing in the floodplains.
July 6, 1996 - Winston responds to the members of Congress who have written to FEMA on Winston's behalf.The response countered the incorrect statements about the "intent of Congress in the Conference Report" of PL 103-325 and the untruthful evaluations of the Winston technology, in which FEMA blatantly falsified information.
July 10, 1996 - Winston received a commitment from Lloyd's of London to provide flood insurance coverage after the prototype has proven its worth.Lloyd's is an acceptable insurance source to the Primary and Secondary Mortgage Markets including Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the second largest provider of flood coverage next to the NFIP.This commitment can open the door to major funding of WLFH prototypes and Winston production plants because it will replace the requirement for NFIP insurance coverage.
July 11, 1996 - Senator Mark Hatfield, the Chairman of the Appropriations Committee and several other influential members of the Senate wrote to Winston concerning "FEMA's so-called evaluation ... made without any significant input from Winston International."These Senators reassured Winston that there is a need for this new technology to provide levels of protection during flood situations.Their continued assistance to Winston was confirmed.
October, 1996 - FEMA responded to Senator Bond's 3 questions in the Congressional Hearing(See May 24, 1996 entry).FEMA's answers took the Conferee's requirements in PL 103-325 completely out of context where they claimed the Conferee's requirements called for "FEMA to be receptive to new technologies that are shown to be equivalent in effect to permanent elevation of a structure through the use of pilings or technologies permitted under current regulations and practices --."This statement was the basis of their inaccurate answers.The following is a direct quote from PL 103-325:"The Conferees expect FEMA to be accommodating to the testing of such technologies; so long as such testing is performed using uninhabitable structures that are dismantled after testing is complete.To the extent such technologies are shown to be equivalent in effect to permanent elevation of a structure through the use of pilings or technologies permitted under current regulations or practices,the Conferees expect FEMA to consider making flood insurance available for such structures under the same terms and conditions as if the structures were permanently elevated."
February 4, 1997 - Jack Kemp wrote a letter to Senator Wayne Allard (R), CO requesting him to act as a champion from Winston's home state to help resolve the issue with FEMA and their reticence to assist in the construction of WLFH prototypes.
February 25, 1997 - At Senator Allard's suggestion, Paul Winston and Bobby Burnett, VP of Coldwell Banker Van Schaack & Co. met with Mike Cileti, Senator Allard's assistant in charge of FEMA relations. The meeting was enthusiastically met by the Senator's staff.[Ed's note, Senator Allard's enthusiasm waned after a letter written by the USACE was distributed by FEMA to several members of Congress.See 5/20/97 entry.]
March 11, 1997 - The following quote is an excerpt from PAUL HARVEY NEWS, nationwide news broadcast, 3/11/97:"Maybe this is not the time to mention Paul Winston's invention ... or maybe it is precisely the right time.He has designed a flood proof house.Looks like any ordinary house until the river overflows ... then the Winston house lifts itself up ... as high as necessary ... to stay dry.The house is built on telescoping piers, pilings and flotation chambers.It rides the rising waters like a catamaran.Then as the flood recedes, it settles back to earth.Even your car(s) in attached garage remains dry.The Winston Land-locked Floating House has enthusiastic support in Congress ... but one government agency is in contempt of Congress for refusing to give its approval.The Federal Emergency Management Agency.They don't like the idea because it wasn't theirs."
August 8, 1997 - FEMA wrote a conciliatory letter to Winston in reply to Winston's 7/1/97 letter to the President.In the letter FEMA repeated, in spite of documented evidence to the contrary, "-- we continue to find that the floating home concept is not equal in effect to permanent elevation of structures to or above the Base Flood Elevation."FEMA did, however, state, "To resolve any misunderstanding, we again state we have no objection to testing under these stated conditions, [uninhabited and dismantled after testing is complete.]"Winston remains skeptical of this deceptive olive branch because of FEMA's previous threats of loss of flood insurance to communities allowingWLFH prototype construction.
November 5, 1997 - Winston received a copy of the following letter addressed to James Witt, Director of FEMA:
"Dear Mr. Witt:
I remain concerned about FEMA's interpretation of Congressional language directing the Agency to test new floodproof technology.It appears that FEMA has not met the mandates of Congress in their interpretation of the Conference Report of the National Flood Insurance Reform Act of 1994.
The Conference Report language began with the statement, "Conferees are further aware that new technology may provide feasible means of floodproofing residential structures in flood-prone areas."The technology referred to in this statement was familiar to the Conferees.It is the patented and successfully computer-tested Land-locked Floating House.
The CR language continues, "The Conferees expect FEMA to be accommodating to the testing of such technologies --- ."As justification for their rationale, FEMA spokespersons have consistently used the following statement in letters to my office and other Congressional offices, and Agencies:"the Conferees requirements called forFEMA to be receptive to testing new technologies that are shown to be equivalent in effect to permanent elevation of a structure through the use of pilings or technologies permitted under current regulations and practices."
The above statement is a distorted misinterpretation of the Conferees wording which states:"The Conferees expect FEMA to be accommodating to the testing of such technologies; so long as such testing is performed using uninhabitable structures that are dismantled after testing is complete.To the extent such technologies are shown to be equivalent in effect to permanent elevation of a structure through the use of pilings or technologies permitted under current regulations or practices, the Conferees expect FEMA to consider making flood insurance available for such structures under the same terms and conditions as if the structures were permanently elevated."FEMA personnel have used this misinterpretation of Conference language as the basis for their lack of accommodation.(Note:FEMA has completely eliminated the above under-lined words in its letters and press quotes.)A false interpretation of this nature completely alters the NFIRA requirements.
Further, the Conferees statement "To the extent such technologies are shown to be equivalent in effect to permanent elevation ---" leaves no doubt that the referenced floodproofing technology is the Land-locked Floating House.
Possibly, the most obtrusive attempt by FEMA to thwart the testing of full-scale prototypes is found in FEMA's June 19, 1996 analysis entitled "EVALUATION OF THE --- LAND-LOCKED FLOATING HOME SYSTEM."Nowhere in the Conference Report does the wording suggest that FEMA write an "evaluation" of this technology.The Executive Summary, Page ii, of this document states:"To date, FEMA has not supported the concept of floating home floodproofing technologies because they do not meet the Congressional intent of the Conference Report of the NFIRA."
How can FEMA even suggest that they do not support the concept of floating house technologies "because they do not meet the Congressional intent of the Conference Report of the NFIRA?"In short, FEMA was not asked to support or reject this floodproofing system until evidence through actual testing of constructed prototypes could prove or disprove the technology is equivalent in effect too permanent elevation of a structure.
FEMA's "evaluation" refers to the CR language, "To the extent such technologies are shown to be equivalent in effect to permanent elevation of a structure through the use of pilings or technologies permitted under current regulations or practices, the Conferees expect FEMA to consider making flood insurance available for such structures under the same terms and conditions as if the structure were permanently elevated."The intent of the Conference Report was to test new technologies and, if proven, revise FEMA's outdated policies and practices.The Conferees expect FEMA to be accommodating to the testing of new floodproofing techniques by independent and objective testing agencies.
I understand this new floodproofing technology has been designed and tested to allow flooded homes to return to original ground levels between floods.It has been computer-tested to protecthomes, lives, and possessions by: Automatically going into flood mode when 1" of water surrounds the exterior of buildings, Allowing homes and occupied garages to rise 5 feet above highest recorded flood levels, Protecting homes from initial flood and all future floods.
Please explain the Agency's lack of adherence to this language and what must be done to insure FEMA takes the necessary steps to encourage the prototype testing of new floodproofing technology.
United States Senator"
The above letter was printed in its entirety.It is refreshing to know that among our elected officials, one has come forth with the strength of character to counter FEMA's deception Senator Murray's office has informed Winston that the Senator will champion the WLFH cause.The Senator's staff will solicit other bi-partisan Congressional leaders to add their authority to correct FEMA's erroneous actions on this legislation.
Letter to President Bush,
The Winston team and I would like to thank Karl Rovefor hand delivering thisletter to Barry Jacksonat the White House needless to say it wasn’t given to the president but sent directly to FEMA. We were contacted by FEMA five weeks later and they told us that Oliver was no longer with FEMA, but it did not change anything for our battle with them.
August 29, 2007
Dear President Bush,
First I would like to begin by saying that I am so grateful that you are our President.My family prays for you on a constant basis, and we know that you talk to our Father to receive guidance in the decisions you make for our country. I was so pleased when you said that Jesus was the most important person in your life. It is hard to stand strong in your faith when faced with criticism and dislike and that's why I applaud you for your resolve.
Knowing that your schedule allows very little time for personal letters, I still believe that my letter will reach you, because of the importance and the urgency of the matter. I recall from many of your speeches that you believe in ordinary people having the answers to many of the issues we face. Our small company has an answer concerning the flood devastations in America. I would like to draw your attention to our efforts, to implement a technology, which would help the people in the flood plains of America.
Mr. President, I am a simple man who has dyslexia; however, God has replaced that with the ability to solve problems by looking at them in a different way. I didn't recognize it as a gift from God, until I became a Christian on April 18th, 1979.
In 1993 (I know you will understand as you read this), as I was watching the flooding along the Mississippi river on the news and the horrendous devastation that was happening to people's lives, I said out loud "Lord, there has to be a way to help these people". In less than ten minutes, I was given a vision of a house that can never be flooded. We filed for a Patent and received it in 190 days. As soon as we had some preliminary drawings, I asked a friend of mine, Reverend Robert Hundley from Washington, DC, to take the package and show it to HUD, the Corps of Engineers, and to FEMA. HUD and the Corps of Engineers said that it could potentially save 70% of the flood damage in America. FEMA, however, informed Rev. Hundley that this house would work too well, and they would never allow it to be built in the flood plains.
We then tried to get help from some key members of the Congress, and at first they thought we were crazy, only to realize shortly after, that this house is going to work. It was written into legislation (Public Law 103-325) that the house was to be tested. As soon as FEMA found out that it had been written into legislation they proceeded to write a 15 page report to give to Congress. This report was totally bogus. The only things truthful in the 15 pages were the names and the date.
They proceeded to send this report to members of the Congress who were involved with our idea, and to our potential backers, who immediately withdrew. This in effect black-balled us, During this time we had computer simulated test done in Seattle, by Pacific Labs. The test was highly successful. Pacific Labs was shocked by the results, proving that the house design actually performed better than expected. They retested it and the results were the same. The testing was done for the house floating in 20 ft of water (running at 5 feet/sec.), fully furnished, with 2 large vans (6,800 lbs each) in the garage, with hurricane force winds against it; it showed very little movement. However, these results were not surprising to me, knowing that the plan for the floating house came from the Master Designer.
Mr. President, with all the flooding that has happened in our country since 1993, this technology should be put to use, saving lives, family homes, their belongings, and tax dollars. Many people have donated their time, money, and effort, over the past 14 years, trying to get this house put to use into the flood plains. They believe this house could be one of the answers for people to remain and live safely in the flood plains. In addition, it can help in the rebuilding of New Orleans and other cities effected by other floods. We also believe that this technology could be used in other places in the world.
We already have the support of Congress, but FEMA, specifically, Mr. Cliff Oliver, is holding us back. Mr. Oliver has been FEMA’s Chief Mitigation Engineer for many years and he opposes the floodproof house because he stated that it is his opinion that it will work too well and he wants people out of the floodplain.Mr. President, I am asking you to please lend us a hand in our effort to bring this technology to the people who need it the most. We have exhausted all of our options and we need your help.
Mr. President, when confronted with the question of blocking our project, I am certain that Mr. Oliver at FEMA will deny any interference in the development of our prototype.However, in the past, potential financial backers have suddenly withdrawn their support after receiving FEMA’s false report on our floodproof house.We know that we can get the funding for the prototype easily, once we have the assurance that Mr. Oliver will stop undermining our business dealings with potential financial backers.Mr. Oliver has demonstrated in the past years that he is able and willing to block our project and ignore directives from the Congress – essentially because the new technology, the floodproof house, does not conform to FEMA’s plan for floodplain management.
To proceed with the prototype, we need a letter from the Director of FEMA, giving their consent to build and test a fully working model; with the provision that once the working prototype is proven successful, FEMA will allow the construction of floodproof houses in the floodplain controlled by FEMA.What do we have to lose?At least we will have made an effort to make a difference in the lives of the people who would be harmed by future floods.My hope is, after we have the prototype built and tested, that you will be able to come and see it personally.
Thank you, President Bush, for your help.
paul k. winston
Please contact your Congressmen, Senators or your Governor and ask why this technology is not available to the people in the flood plain.
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