Happy Fourth Of July From SERVPRO of Bellevue West
On July 4th, 1776 a great country was founded; The United States of America! Every year we celebrate by wearing red, white and blue, barbequing and shooting fireworks high into the night sky. While this is a long-lasting tradition, it does not mean this is safe and shouldn’t be done without taking caution. According to the National Fire Protection Association fireworks cause roughly 18,500 fires per year in the US alone. Due to this risk, King and Snohomish counties have banned fireworks in some areas during the 4th of July and you can be fined up to 5,000 dollars. Dry conditions and firework do not mix well, and we never recommend shooting fireworks in illegal areas and drylands. If you are in a safe and legal place and plan to partake in fireworks, here are some tips that will keep your family and homes safe.
- Always follow the directions written on the firework, never relight a dud or make/operate any custom fireworks
- Make sure that the area you are shooting fireworks and the area where they land does not have any fine grass, dead/dry branches and all debris
- IF you are near your house make sure you have insurance that covers any firework accidents
- Clean your gutters of anything that could catch fire. Even though gutters are made for water, during droughts they can become kindling
- If you are leaving town during the 4th, make sure you have a neighbor keeping a close eye on your home
- Have a water bucket near so you can put out any dud fireworks or fires you might encounter.
These few simple tips can help your family and home stay safe on this most patriotic of holidays.
From all of us at SERVPRO of Bellevue West, Have a happy and safe Independence Day!
Tips for Mitigating Water and Microbial Issues
When you find mold or water issues in your home or business it’s to get professionals on the case as soon as possible. You should never try to fight mold or water issues 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 Microbial Growth Spreads:
Microbial growth 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 microbial growth, but it can certainly slow down its spread to make the overall damage more manageable until professionals arrive. Visit http://www.SERVPRObellevuewest.com for more information on mold cleaning and steps to mitage water from your home or business.
Helpful Tips For Stopping Microbial Growth in its Tracks
The unfortunate thing about microbial growth 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: SERVPRO of Bellevue West
The best way to effectively stop mold in its tracks is to retain the help of your Bellevue, WA mold remediation team at SERVPRO of Bellevue West. 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.
Microbial Growth is a major pain for homeowners to deal with 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.
Visit http://www.SERVPRObellevuewest.com for more information on mold, water issues and our cleaning process.
The STEP Program: Students and Teachers Towards Emergency Preparedness
Disasters impact children and youth across the United States. We know this from a first-hand experience and have seen families (and children) displaced from their homes due to flooding and fire issues. This is a tough reality to face; interruption in children’s lives can cause distraction in school and emotional distress. This is one of the many reasons SERVPRO of Bellevue West works hard to make sure families and their children can get back into their homes as quickly as possible following a disaster.
When children prepare and practice for an emergency, it improves their ability to take immediate action and feel more comfortable, less shock, in an emergency situation. With training, they can actively take part in preparedness in their communities, from home to school. But students, teachers, and parents know that between classes, testing, and extracurricular activities, making the time can be challenging. A new program in place helps teachers be proactive about implementing emergency preparedness training. Many schools nationwide have begun using Student Tools for Emergency Planning (STEP). FEMA piloted STEP in 2008 for fourth and fifth grade classrooms. STEP’s basic lessons are only an hour long. Students learn skills to build an emergency kit and a family communications plan. These basic lessons taught together build the foundation for the program, or can stand alone. Children are able to bring home what they have learned and share with their families. Teachers can add lessons and customize situations about disasters that might happen in their area- for example tsunamis for coastal cities and hurricanes in the mid-west. STEP includes lessons about fires, severe weather (including extreme heat and cold, tornadoes, and hurricanes), and earthquakes. There are also lessons to include geography, science, English, art, and math. Throughout, instructors can use STEP’s “Disaster Dodgers” video series, handouts, homework assignments, and classroom activities to bring the lessons to life. These features make it adaptable on every level and help create real life situations that children can relate to. Practice makes perfect and this si certainly something worth practicing in school and at home.
SERVPRO of Bellevue West is passionate about emergency preparedness in schools and our local communities. If you are a teacher and would like emergency preparedness coloring books or emergency kit flyers for your classrooms please contact us at 425-454-3900.
The Hidden Value of Personal Protective Equipment
According to Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs, SAFETY is the second most important factor of life only behind basic survival needs. At SERVPRO of Bellevue West we take safety very seriously. When our employees feel safe and comfortable while working with or around possibly hazardous materials it is important to our success. When workers feel safe, they work harder, smarter and help us retain high skilled, hard-working talent in our company. Keeping these people within our company is an easy way to make sure that we have properly trained and certified workers that can help with every and any job.
Investing in proper Personal Protective Equipment can also create a great return on investment opportunity because we have the right tools for the job. It is a great opportunity to set us apart from other companies while recruiting new workers and customers. Proper Protective Equipment shows how seriously we take our job, always being prepared with our PPE bag shows professionalism and that we are up for anything the customer need, wants or throws our way. When realizing that safety is not just a human need, but a key motivator in the success of our company is when we start to see our company thriving. When breaking down the pros and cons of investing in top tier Personal Protective Equipment, the Pros of return on investment and safety far outweigh the cons of the initial price.
Dealing with possibly hazardous material can be a big turnoff to people when they apply for a job, but here at SERVPRO of Bellevue West we take all possible measures to make sure that everybody is always safe and is always comfortable. If you have questions about biohazard regulations in the State of Washington or if you have a biohazard cleaning issue call us for more information at 425-454-3900.
2019 Restoration Trend Predictions
The Restoration Industry has and will continue to change throughout the years as rules and regulations evolve. Below, our SERVPRO of Bellevue West team has researched and written some possible predictions for the restoration industry in 2019 based on industry trends. None of these are guaranteed, but only what experts think will continue/start to happen.
- Labor Shortages: There is a shortage of all positions in the Restoration Industry. It is incredibly hard to find highly skilled workers in any market. A lot of businesses are limited in growth because of their staff shortages.
- Weather Events Continue: There have been a record number of insured losses due to mother nature in the last couple years and that number will most likely will continue to rise. During times of catastrophic events restoration companies tend to be exposed and stretched short.
- Actionable Technology: As new technology continues to make our jobs easier, it will also help us keep costs down and help us provide better, more accurate estimates to our customers.
- Cost Inflation: While this is not a new trend, costs will continue to rise as time goes on.
- Cyber Crime: While not an industry trend at the moment, it could easily ruin a business or distract workers from being able to focus on their job.
- More Flexibility in Program Work: Workers will start to have more leverage when it comes to their jobs. Reducing zip code coverage, labor shortages, increasing costs, expectations and a strong economy will help the laborers gain more leverage in this industry and take the job back into their hands.
For more questions about restoration trends call SERVPRO of Bellevue West at 425-454-3900.
Differences Between Odor Treatment Methods
Odor treatment is a science and cannot be treated as a “One size fits all”. SERVPRO of Bellevue West uses the best Odor Treatment Method necessary for your home or commercial building to remove the odor as fast and efficiently as possible. Between the 7 methods of odor treatment there are many differences and all of them that work in different ways. The differences between each of them are as follows
Absorbents: Typically, they are solid materials made to keep the odor in place and smother it. By smothering, it captures and holds the odors on their surfaces. These solids can be cleaned up afterwards and take the odors with them.
Neutralization: Uses the equation “1-1=0” to eliminate the odor. This equation means that it uses a chemical to neutralize the odor and make it obsolete. This process is mostly used for halogens such as Chlorine, Bromine and Iodine.
Oxidation: Mostly used for organic decomposition or skunks. This process adds oxygen to the scent to control the odor. Oxygen is a great method to eliminate odors.
Biocides: Used to kill the growth of microorganisms. Killing the source of the smell is one of the most effective ways of odor treatment.
Counteraction: This means to work against the odor. It takes scentless odors and it combines with the odorous odor to eliminate the scent.
Masking: This process covers the bad smelling odor with a stronger, better smelling, pleasant scent.
Bioenzymatic digestion: Specially engineered bacteria are scent out to produce enzymes to consume and digest the odorous materials. Most often used while carpet cleaning.
If you have an odor issue call SERVPRO of Bellevue West at 425-454-3900.
The Importance Of On the Job Training
Even when hiring someone that has experience in the Restoration Industry, on the job training is still a necessity. On the job training goes much farther than making sure your staff is trained for any job they might come across. On the job training ensures that everybody in the company understands what’s going on throughout every job and are up to the company’s standards.
Everybody being on the same page ensures that Restoration Technicians, Project Managers and all office personnel know what is happening, and therefore anyone can explain it to the clients.
Often, companies’ standards differ in some ways from the industry standards because the industry standards are set to just the necessities and SERVPRO of Bellevue West goes above and beyond. Employees being trained should understand why we do a job a certain way this will advance their career and further their abilities. Getting the job done isn’t good enough, getting the job done right and making sure that the problem will not arise again is the SERVPRO way. The more training that employees have means that your company can take on more expert level, higher paying jobs increasing revenue and our reputation. It also is a benefit for the employee because they will be smarter at their job, helping them make their job easier, and they can make more money with the more they know. Job training is so important to the success of the company, and it makes sure everybody is on the same page, doing the job right, all the time. Whether we are performing service for a commercial building or residential home, you can ensure the job will always be done correctly and efficiently. If you are interested in joining the SERVPRO of Bellevue West team call us at 425-454-3900.
An Emergency Supply Checklist for Bellevue Residents
Most storm, fire, and water damage happens unexpectedly and emergencies can catch Bellevue residents unprepared.
It is very smart to have an emergency supply bag or container already stocked with the basics you need should an emergency happen. When the New Yorker published an article in 2015 called ‘The Really Big One” many people began re-evaluating their personal preparedness. Our SERVPRO team recommends the following items for personal preparedness;
Emergency survival kit
- Store a kit at home, at work and at each child’s school or daycare facility.
- Dry or canned food and drinking water for each person
- Can opener
- First aid supplies and first aid book
- Copies of important documents such as birth certificates, licenses, and insurance policies
- "Special needs" items for family members such as infant formula, eyeglasses and medications
- A change of clothing
- Sleeping bag or blanket
- Battery powered radio or television
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- Waterproof matches
- Toys, books, puzzles, games
- Extra house keys and car keys
- List of contact names and phone numbers
- Food, water and supplies for pets
Additional items you can store at home for emergency use:
- Cooking supplies
- Barbecue, camp stove
- Fuel for cooking, such as charcoal or camp stove fuel
- Plastic knives, forks, spoons
- Paper plates and cups
- Paper towels
- Heavy-duty aluminum foil
- Large plastic trash bags for trash, water protection
- Large trash cans
- Bar soap and liquid detergent
- Toothpaste and toothbrushes
- Feminine and infant supplies
- Toilet paper
- Household bleach with no additives, and eyedropper (for purifying drinking water)
- Newspaper — to wrap garbage and waste
- Sturdy shoes
- Gloves for clearing debris
- Ax, shovel, broom
- Crescent wrench for turning off gas
- Screwdriver, pliers, hammer
- Coil of one-half inch rope
- Plastic tape and sheeting
- Knife or razor blades
- Garden hose for siphoning and fire fighting
In Washington flood recovery, earthquake recovery, and recovery from other natural disasters will be much easier if you’re prepared with emergency survival tools and supplies like these. Call SERVPRO of Bellevue West for more information regarding how you can appropriately prepare for an emergency: 425-454-3900.
SERVPRO of Bellevue West Proudly Renews Their Chamber Membership
SERVPRO of Bellevue West Proudly Supports the Bellevue Chamber as a renewed member for 2019. Our SERVPRO team is thrilled to be involved with the Bellevue Chamber again: a wonderful organization supporting local businesses growth and development. We have immensely enjoyed participating in a multitude of events, keeping up to date on local news and making new connections.
The 4 main reasons SERVPRO of Bellevue West is involved in the local chamber:
- Local Visibility in our community
- Access and connections to other business partners
- Resources related to training (workshops, featured speakers and mentors offer a wealth of knowledge)
- Advocacy to learn about local politics
The chamber provides its members with a wonderful and strong voice in the community. The Bellevue Chamber is a leader in Eastside public policy discussions affecting the business community and is committed to ensuring that our members’ concerns are heard on a wide range of issues at the local, regional, state and federal levels of government. Local businesses know that the Chamber is championing business issues on their behalf and is very thankful to have this support.