3 Tips for Preparing Your Business for a Fire
All commercial property owners hope nothing bad will ever happen to their building. However, it is best to still have a fire contingency plan in place. There is a chance you will never need to put it into action, but in the event you do need it, you will be thankful it is there. Develop this evacuation plan with your local fire department in Medina, Washington, to ensure you cover all essential points.
1. Create a Command Structure
When a fire breaks out, you want everyone to know what they are supposed to do. You should assign one individual to be in charge of communications and inform everyone in the vicinity of the fire. Someone will also need to be in charge of reaching out to the fire department to extinguish the flames. Finally, one person should oversee the recovery efforts and reach out to fire remediation experts so that restoration begins right away.
2. Train Employees to Prevent Fires
Your contingency plan should involve more than simply responding to a fire. It should involve how you are going to be proactive in preventing one in the first place. This may include hosting seminars where a professional firefighter teaches employees about common fire hazards around the workplace. Preventive efforts should also involve having your building’s fire alarms and fire extinguishers inspected regularly.
3. Create a Staffing Plan
Your business operations will naturally be interrupted immediately following a fire. You can reduce the financial impact of this by having a plan to maintain operations while the building is getting repaired. Some employees may be able to do some of their duties at home.
You will feel a lot more at ease once you have a detailed fire contingency plan in place. You may never need it, but it could help your business tremendously if it ever does need to come into play.
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What To Do After a Fire
House fires can be terrifying experiences, and recovering from them can take a long time. Depending on the size and scope of the fire, fire restoration in Bellevue, Washington, can take several weeks, even a few months, to fully complete. Following these steps can help you recover successfully from this difficult experience:
1. Assess family member safety.
2. Contact insurance agency.
3. Contact board up services.
Check Everyone’s Safety
If you have a fire safety plan, all family members probably followed it to safely exit the house; everyone then should have met at a pre-determined location. After exiting the house, begin by assessing the safety of each family member and pet. Pursue medical care promptly for all concerns.
Contact Insurance Company
Fire restoration should be started as soon as possible, and your fire insurance coverage can help address these and other concerns. Once your family’s immediate care needs have been seen to, you can begin contacting your insurance company. It probably needs lots of information, some of which you may not have at this time. Simply beginning the conversation can be important since your insurance company can provide you with some helpful support following a City, State, house fire.
Arrange for Board Up Services
Your insurance company can probably help you contact board up services and disaster management companies. These service providers may help secure the scene so that no one can enter the property while it is still unsafe. Often, insurance agents must inspect the scene to help assess the degree of damage; this board up service helps agents do their jobs effectively. Your insurance agent may be a point person that you can contact for questions regarding any stage of fire restoration.
Cleaning is likely going to take a bit of time, depending on the degree of the fire and to what extent it damaged your home. Arranging for smoke cleaning can help you get back to your normal routine that much faster.
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Essential Things to Know About Black Water
Immediately after experiencing life-altering flooding in Bellevue, WA the first thing you probably want to do is start dealing with the water damage from the flood. Before doing that, though, you must know about the associated dangers of black water.
What Is This Water, and Why Is It Dangerous?
Black water is liquid presumed to house multiple contaminants. It’s a very common danger after floods. It could contain:
• Fecal matter
• Used toilet paper
Sewage systems frequently become compromised and leak after water damage. Then, they pose health threats to those who encounter the dirty liquid.
It’s also important to be aware of gray water. That type often comes from washing machines, dishwashers, sinks and showers and is not immediately as dangerous as the black variety, but can become more hazardous after 48 hours of contact with building surfaces.
How Can You Stay Safe From Contaminated Water?
The best way to limit your exposure to hazardous water from flooding is to limit your exposure to it. Instead of trying to handle the cleanup process for your home or helping your neighbors in Bellevue, WA depend on a flood cleanup company to assess the damage and tackle the steps necessary for a thorough restoration of your home.
Black water is a likely contaminant after a flood, and it’s a primary reason why you should not deal with the water damage on your own. Contacting a professional team to assist with damage from flooding gives you greater protection from possible risks and increases the likelihood of positive outcomes.
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Insurance and Water Contamination
When flooding strikes a home, it’s important for homeowners to have an idea of what to expect from an insurance, repair and restoration standpoint. Insurance companies generally have three different ways of categorizing flood water. Each level corresponds with how dangerous the water can be. Additionally, the varying levels help to inform both insurance companies and water restoration specialists how to best address the contaminated water problem.
How Do Insurance Companies Categorize Water?
Insurance companies generally separate floodwater into three types of categories.
• Category 1 – Clean Water. This comes from a sanitary water source, such as your supply line and water heater.
• Category 2 – Grey Water. This is usually from your washing machine and dish washer.
• Category 3 – Black Water. This comes from the outside in storm and flood situations, or when a sewer line breaks.
How Dangerous Are Each of the Categories?
Category 1 water levels are not dangerous, but can promote mold development if left untreated. For this reason, you want to ensure that you completely dry any flooded areas and follow a dehumidification process to discourage mold production.
Category 2 water levels can be somewhat toxic if consumed, but are not dangerous if a person is only exposed to them. The risk of mold production remains intact, however, with this kind of water.
Category 3 is for contaminated water that is toxic to the point that the rest of the house needs to be barred from the affected area. It is crucial to take the utmost precaution with category 3 water levels, so be sure to call your local water removal specialists if you are dealing with black water damage.
Even the cleanest water can make its way to unseen places and later cause mold problems. Therefore, regardless of whether your home is flooded with clean or contaminated water, you can benefit from the assistance of emergency flood damage restoration professionals in Bellevue, WA. Visit http://www.SERVPRObellevuewest.com for more information on water damage.
Business Restoration After a Flood
Your business may flood for a number of reasons. A flooded company can be caused by natural disasters, a broken pipe or a heavy rainstorm. If your building has water damage, it’s time for restoration. Most people are stumped by how to handle the cleanup process. They may not know which items to throw out, which items to clean or how to clean them.
1. Which Items To Clean
It’s wise not to try to handle the cleanup on your own. A restoration company can assess the damage done to your business. They can tell you which items can be cleaned and which cannot be. The rule of thumb to remember is that nonporous objects can be cleaned, whereas porous materials typically cannot be. For instance, carpeting, bedding and soft furniture may be difficult to clean. However, hard and smooth surfaces can be washed.
2. How To Clean Your Contents
Most people use a formula of detergent, vinegar and water to clean their contents after a flood. You do not always need powerful cleaners. If there is mold or mildew, an expert can assess how it should be cleaned and with what equipment. When clothing is damaged in a flood, it may be salvageable. The safest option is to take clothing to a dry cleaner. Dry cleaning will sanitize your clothes.
3. What Items To Throw Out
Upholstered furniture, bedding and paper products should be the first to be removed after a flood. These are objects that can be difficult if not impossible to clean. If the documents that were damaged in your flooded company are important, then you may be able to salvage them. For everything else, it is safe to toss it out.
The cleanup of your flooded company in Bellevue, WA does not have to be a miserable affair. The first step to accomplishing your goal is to have an idea of how you and your specialist can handle the mess.
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Stop Mold in its Tracks With These 4 Tips
Stop Mold in its Tracks With These 4 Tips
The thing about black mold is that once it is present, it can spread like wildfire. Mold spores are tiny and lightweight, and even just a puff of air can send spores from one room to the next. If you have discovered mold in your home, the key to controlling the situation is to act fast. To stop mold in its tracks and prevent further damage, do the following four things:
Turn Off Your HVAC System
Mold spores can travel from room to room via your home’s HVAC system. Once in the HVAC system, there is no telling where the spores may go or what type of damage they will cause. To prevent extensive damage to everything from your possessions to your home’s foundation, turn off your HVAC immediately after discovering the problem.
Don’t let mold fester, and keep all rooms well ventilated. Turn on the fans in each room, open the windows if it’s not cold outside and check all of your exhaust systems to make sure that they’re working properly. The key is to get mold out, and not let it fester in still air.
Turn on a Dehumidifier
Black mold needs a humid environment to grow and thrive. Keep your home’s humidity levels in check; ideally, the humidity levels in your home should stay between 30 and 50 percent.
Call in a Mold Remediation Team
The best way to effectively stop mold in its tracks is to retain the help of your Bellevue, WA mold remediation team. A team that specializes in mold cleanup knows how to kill mold as well as where to look for the source of the problem. Once they identify the source, they can advise you on what steps to take to prevent future infestations.
Black mold is a major pain and can quickly spread given the right conditions. However, by taking the proper measures immediately after detecting it, you can prevent extensive damage to your home and save yourself the time, money and hassle of dealing with a larger infestation.
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Tips for Mitigating Mold Damage
Tips for Mitigating Mold Damage
When you find black mold in your home in Bellevue, WA it’s crucial to get professionals on the case as soon as possible. However, your mold cleanup crew of choice might not be available right away. You should never try to fight mold yourself, but you can reduce the size of your problem by taking a few key steps to slow its spread by:
Reducing air flow
Maintaining cool temperatures
How Mold Spreads
Black mold is a form of fungus, and like other fungi, it is known to grow in warm, wet conditions. Therefore, parts of your home experiencing a moisture problem are more prone to mold invasion than areas that are open and receive plenty of fresh air. Mold can travel through both moisture and airflow, so it’s imperative to reduce the presence of these two in your home to slow down the spread of mold while waiting for expert assistance.
The first thing you’ll need to do is turn off your HVAC system. This can prevent air from moving mold spores to different areas of your home where they might otherwise sprout and cause a much larger issue than you already have. Furthermore, you should attempt to keep your home cool without the use of your HVAC system, as mold tends to grow more quickly in warmer conditions.
Eliminate Excess Water
Turning off your water until the professionals arrive to assess the mold issue is the best possible way to reduce the moisture in your home. This stops running water from moving mold spores to other parts of your home and from directly contaminating the water you regularly use. The pros will let you know when it’s safe to turn the water back on.
Taking these precautionary steps won’t eliminate black mold, but it can certainly slow down its spread to make the overall damage more manageable when professionals do arrive. Visit http://www.SERVPRObellevuewest.com for more information on mold.
How to Come Back After a Flood
How to Come Back After a Flood
As the storm settles, the battle to restore homes and businesses begins. After a flood, the damage can be extensive and beginning the cleanup can be daunting. Where do you start? Commercial property owners in Bellevue, WA struggle with this question every year, but by removing water, throwing away ruined items, and content cleaning, your business will soon be back to normal.
1. Eliminating Standing Water
Before you can determine what can be cleaned, there can’t be any water left in the building. If the standing water doesn’t flow out naturally, then it may need to be professionally removed. Given the bacteria and mold that is often found after major flooding, it’s important that you don’t come in contact with the water itself. It can make you and your employees incredibly sick. In addition, it’s easier for you do a full cleanup if there isn’t any water to contend with.
2. Removing Loose Items
Unfortunately, not all items can be saved. This is especially true for porous surfaces. Porous materials include certain types of tile, laminate and granite. These permeable materials don’t have a smooth surface and because of this, content cleaning is more difficult and complex. Certain pieces of furniture or appliances may have to be removed from the property entirely to properly disinfect the building. If you’re ever confused about what to keep or throw out, a professional can help.
3. Cleaning Content
For hard surfaces, it is recommended that you use a mixture of water and detergent. While most non-porous surfaces are safe to clean, if the mold has spread over 10 square feet, then professional help is strongly encouraged. Keep in mind that black water is the best breeding ground for dangerous molds, so if you suspect or know there was waste water involved, be sure to get expert help.
It may seem like a long road to restoration, but it’s easier to consider if you break it up into simple stages. Clearing out the water, removing the items, and proper content cleaning should have your business back on track in no time. Visit http://www.SERVPRObellevuewest.com for more information on flood damage.
How to Handle Commercial Fire Damage Professionally
How to Handle Commercial Fire Damage Professionally
If you have recently suffered commercial fire damage, it is important that you get fire restoration done by a company that has been doing it for quite some time. This company can handle fire damage, smoke damage and even soot damage that has been left behind from a utility room fire or electrical fire. After the firefighters have left with their fire trucks and fire hoses, you need to get fire restoration done by professionals who deal with commercial fire damage.
The soot damage that has been left behind from a utility room fire or electrical fire is best left to the professionals. Unfortunately, firefighters with their fire trucks and fire hoses will not be able to handle the damage that has been left behind after they have left. This is why it is important for you to contact a local company so that they can come out and assess the damage and give you a quote for how much it is going to cost to restore your office back to preloss conditions. This is an option best left to The Experts, since many people do not have the tools or skills necessary in order to do fire damage cleanup on their own. If you have some type of insurance on your property, you may even find that you save money simply because of the fact that they cover the cost of the cleanup for you.
There are many different options available to you when it comes to getting the most from your fire cleanup options. Because there are lots of companies out there that do this type of work, it is important for you to contact them to get a quote for having the job done. Once you have the job done, you are able to get back into the office and work with clients and employees on a regular basis. This ensures that nothing with your business goes on the back burner simply because you have recently dealt with a fire and do not know how to clean it up properly. There are many different professionals out there who are going to be more than willing to help you with the fire clean up, so make sure that you contact them to find out what they are able to do for you and how much they charge for their services before you make the decision to hire them to get the project done. Visit http://www.SERVPRObellevuewest.com for more information on commercial fire damage.
Restoring a Fire-Damaged Property the Right Way
Restoring a Fire-Damaged Property the Right Way
In the United States alone, fire damage is responsible for more than $350 billion in annual costs per year. This makes fire damage, by far, the leading cause of damage to real property in the country. The bad news is that such staggering numbers, with fire damage being more than 2 percent of GDP, means that, at some point, fire damage will affect almost everyone who owns real estate.
The good news is that, with the right interventions, fire damage restoration does not have to spell financial doom and total loss of the property.
Your local restoration company is staffed by trained professionals with years of experience and sophisticated, specialized equipment. They are experts in carrying out fire damage restorations and can help ensure that your property is restored to its full prior condition.
But the most important thing a property owner who has experienced a fire in their home or fire in their business can do is to call in their local restoration company as soon as practicable.
Once the fire department leaves, call in the pros, first thing
Like all remediation efforts, the sooner the fire damage restoration process can get started, the better. Once the fire department has signed off, stating that the fire has been fully extinguished, the first thing any property owner who has experienced a fire in their home or fire in their business should do is call in their local restoration company at once.
The restoration company will immediately send out a fire cleanup team to assess the damage and begin the preliminary steps in the fire cleanup process. It cannot be over stressed that the sooner this fire damage restoration process can begin, the more likely it will be that the property can be completely restored at a minimum of cost.
The board up and damage survey
Any time fire has struck, the most immediate concern is to get undergo a full board up of the property. The board up serves to keep weather, especially rain water, out of the property. Without a quick and competent board up, water or snow can quickly begin entering the property. As bad as smoke damage, smoke smells and soot damage are, extensive water damage can render a property completely uninhabitable within a week. For this reason, it is imperative that a professional board up be undertaken.
Once the property has been secured from outside elements, a survey of the extent of the fire in the home or fire in the business will be undertaken. The survey team will note the extent of direct structural damage and estimate how much of the property has experienced soot damage, smoke damage and permeated smoke smells. Although the latter often account for the majority of fire damage, they also are the easiest to completely clean.
Removal of soot damage, smoke damage and smoke smells
The first order of business for the fire cleanup team will be the replacement of damaged structural components. Although this is the most expensive work the fire cleanup team will perform, well-contained fires often produce surprisingly little direct and severe structural damage. This factor will largely depend on how quickly and effectively the fire in the home or fire in the business was contained.
The next step will be the removal of soot damage, smoke damage and smoke smell. The team will strip away all surface permeated by soot damage and smoke damage using sodium bicarbonate blasting. They will then encapsulate the underlying materials with special air-tight sealant, preventing the smoke smell from escaping, thereby eliminating it from the ambient air of the home.
Commercial fire damage
Commercial fire damage can take on even more complex dimensions. Situations involving commercial fire damage often involve inventories that have been or are at risk of being ruined. In a commercial fire damage situation, it is even more crucial to call in a team of trained professionals.
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