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When It Come To Getting Back To Normal After a Fire - Why SERVPRO!

1/10/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Fire and Water Cleanup SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski & Noble Counties has what it takes to restore your home back to pre loss condition.
 

A fire can be devastating to your home or business. After the fire trucks leave, your property will likely suffer from not only fire and smoke damage, but also widespread water damage and flooding from firefighting efforts. SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski & Noble Counties has specialized fire and water damage restoration training and experience to quickly clean up and restore your home to pre-fire condition. They also can remove the pervasive smoke odor and deep-clean soot from upholstery and carpet.

Board-ups - In some cases firefighters may break windows and cut holes in the roof in order to vent the fire. It is extremely important to secure openings to your home or structure using sturdy, durable materials designed to protect it from both weather intrusion and intrusion by outsiders.

Types of Fire/Smoke/Soot

Wet Smoke – Plastics and Synthetics; Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood; Fast burning, high temperatures, dry, powdery, non-smeary residues.

Protein – Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.

Fuel Oil Soot – Furnace Puff Backs. Other Types – Tear gas, fingerprint powder and fire extinguisher residue.

What to do after a fire:

  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.

What NOT to do after a fire:

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting SERVPRO 
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may damage garment further.

SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski & Noble Counties has what it takes to restore your home back to pre loss condition.

When It Comes To Proper Biohazard Cleanup Choose SERVPRO (Part 1 of 2)

11/14/2021 (Permalink)

bio When there is mold in a home or business, we have the resources and personnel to help get your home or business back together. Call us today!

Dissecting Biohazard Cleanup: Understanding the Process and Reducing Risk

When compared to a fire or water loss, property damage resulting from a suicide, murder or unattended death poses greater risk and complexity for the adjuster, the biohazard cleanup company, and of course, the policyholder. Many cleaning and restoration companies will offer bioremediation services, but only those that specialize in this area, like SERVPRO truly understand the science and intricacies of the bioremediation and decontamination process. In order to minimize risk for the insurance carrier and ensure the safety of the policy holder, it’s important to realize the inherent challenges of bioremediation and the processes and standards that every biohazard cleanup professional must adhere to.

Am I liable for an improper biohazard cleanup?

At some point in their careers, insurance professionals may have experienced sticker shock from a bioremediation claim. How could the biohazard cleanup of a single room cost more than recovering an entirely flooded home? It might be tempting to retain a trusted property damage restoration company at a lower cost, but doing so may put the insurer at risk for a lawsuit.

Consider a recent case where a general cleaning company was hired to sanitize a home after 600 pounds of deer meat rotted in a family’s garage due to a power outage. Following the cleaning, the homeowners reported that the rotting stench still remained throughout the house and that some family members became ill. Experts who were brought in to investigate the situation determined that the enduring smell and sickness resulted from inefficiencies in the cleaning process, such as the failure to seal concrete surfaces.

Why is bioremediation so complex?

Many biohazard situations pose grave health risks to policy holders and cleanup companies because of the potential exposure to bloodborne pathogens. One out of every 24 people has Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV and these pathogens can survive in a deceased person for a considerable amount of time – up to 16 days after death, depending on the temperature and surrounding environment. Exposure to bloodborne viruses can occur due to direct contact with non-intact skin, accidental injury from biological fragments, inhalation and exposure from splashes of blood or bio fluid to the eyes, nose, or mouth. Considering the health risks, bioremediation specialists must follow stringent employee safety regulations and meticulous decontamination procedures that most cleanup crews are not accustomed to.

Separately, biohazard situations can lead to hidden dangers that an average property restoration technician might not even consider. For example, in a water damage emergency, floor boards and drywall might be removed because they are visibly warped and unsalvageable. Then the rest of the structure can be dried out. In contrast, blood can seep through grout and in-between floorboards, even through subflooring. There is no other way to clean the damage but to remove all affected materials – if new wood floors are installed over the blood spill or if tiles are simply wiped down, the remaining bio matter can spread disease, release odors and further damage the property.

When It Comes To Proper Biohazard Cleanup Choose SERVPRO (Part 2 of 2)

11/14/2021 (Permalink)

bio When there is mold in a home or business, we have the resources and personnel to help get your home or business back together. Call us today!

How do I evaluate a bioremediation provider?

To determine whether or not a company is qualified to handle a biohazard situation, insurance professionals need a deeper understanding of proper bioremediation standards and what it takes to fully decontaminate a property. These are the key things to inquire about when choosing a vendor for a biohazard cleanup:

OSHA Compliance – These regulations are in place to protect the biohazard company employees and to prevent injury and potential liability for all involved. All supervisors and field technicians should be trained in the following OSHA programs: Bloodborne Pathogens, Personal Protective Equipment, Hazard Communication, Asbestos Awareness, Heat Illness, Fall Protection, Lift Safety, Lock Out – Tag Out, and Power Tool Safety. A common misstep among restoration companies is that they only comply with the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standards, instead of all the aforementioned areas.

EPA and State Environmental Agency Compliance – The disposal of medical waste must be in accordance with federal, state and/or local regulations. Not all biohazard remediation companies are licensed to transport or store medical waste so it’s essential to understand if/how they comply with the local and national standards. The cleaning company can incur hefty fines if medical waste is not disposed of properly. Also, employees need to be trained in the proper use of cleaning agents – this can be more complicated than it seems, as many agents will become inactive if not measured and diluted properly.

Reporting/Testing – A reputable company should be able to deliver a detailed report which catalogs every step of the cleanup process. This should include photos of the entire process as well, so the policy holder and adjuster understand why some structural materials needed to be removed, what was disposed, why the employees went through a certain amount of protective equipment, etc. They should also have equipment available to check for non-visible but active biological fluids and other contaminants so that it is certain when an area is considered disinfected.

Sensitivity Training – Dealing with a flood or fire can be extremely traumatic, but it does not compare to the loss of loved one. During these traumatic situations, the family members often stay at home so it is imperative that the workers in their home are compassionate and considerate. The biohazard cleanup specialists at SERVPRO understand the need for the family to deal with only one point person in order to avoid confusion or conflicting updates. They have been trained to eliminate alarming language from their vocabulary and speak empathetically with the policyholder.

When it comes to biohazard remediation, there is no quick solution. The fact that there are no laws protecting policy holders through a biohazard cleaning process puts the responsibility on the insurance carrier to work with bioremediation specialists who follow strict safety standards and cleanup procedures. If the insurance carrier directs the cleanup process and even one of the above points is neglected, they might be held liable for any further health and property damages resulting from the improper cleanup. It is important to remember that you can’t put a price tag on the peace of mind that a policy holder needs after a traumatic crime or death occurred in their home or place of business.

Locally Owned Company with Valuable Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski & Fulton is strategically located to respond quickly to your water damage emergency and your mold cleanup. When there is mold in a home or business, we have the resources and personnel to help get your home or business back together. Call us today!

SERVPRO Has The Best Highly Trained Professionals & Restoration Equipment For Water Damage

6/29/2021 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events in commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO 

SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton Counties specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Ask The Experts: Are there things I ca do to mitigate the risks of flooding?

6/7/2021 (Permalink)

Running a business brings many challenging. Managing employees, keeping customers happy and building an economically sustainable building is always on your mind. Environmental damage to your building could be devastating. The repair and cleanup costs alone could be detrimental. Loss of work time could put you behind the competition. With a proactive attitude, you can reduce the flood damage in your workplace.

Check Out Waterproof Materials

Thanks to advances in building materials, there are several options you can explore to repel or resist water. These efforts may not completely keep an area dry, but they can be effective in helping you salvage important equipment, tools and structural components. Some items to consider include:

  • Putting a layer of waterproof veneer on the walls.
  • Add waterproofing to the floors.
  • Waterproof furniture

Wise Selection

Lowering your risk for flood damage may start before you even open the doors of your company. Carefully choose a location for your building. By consulting engineers and other experts, you can review areas prone to floods and choose to build elsewhere. Constructing on higher ground should put you in much safer territory.

Raise Them Up

If you have experienced water issues or flooding at work before, avoid additional damage by raising bookshelves, cabinets and equipment off the ground. Often, water comes in through the floor, especially on ground or sub-ground levels.

Proper Drainage

Storm damage can be severe after heavy rainfall, especially if your building is ill-prepared to send water away. Make sure the property has functional rain gutters and downspouts that divert the water far from the foundation of your building. Check these areas regularly, especially immediately following a storm.
Though you can have peace of mind to know that qualified flood remediation specialists can help you recover from even the worst flooding, you want to avoid as much damage as possible. Be responsible and use these strategies in your emergency planning.

So give us a call! We are faster to any disaster and are here to help make things "Like it never even happened."

Ask The Experts: What should I do if a pipe bursts in my business?

6/7/2021 (Permalink)

Bursting pipes can occur without warning and can devastate homes. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed when an issue suddenly occurs in your home, but knowing what to do if a pipe bursts can help you react in a timely manner.


1. Stop the Flowing Water

A burst pipe can allow huge amounts of water to come into your house in a very short period of time, and more water in your home will likely mean more damage. Using the shutoff valve, which is often located in basements or garages, will turn off the water to your entire house. Other issues may also require you to turn off the water in your home, so it’s generally helpful to know how to cut off the supply of water before any problems arise.

2. Turn Off the Power

The amount of water bursting pipes can bring into the home can create electrical hazards. In order to keep yourself safe and to minimize the risk of an electrical fire, it’s generally wise to turn off the power to your residence. Additionally, it’s often best not to touch any items that use electricity or any electrical outlets even after you have turned off your home’s power.

3. Ask for Help

After the water is no longer flowing into your home and your home no longer has power, it’s often best to contact a plumber and water damage restoration expert. A plumber can fix the broken pipe and can assess your other tubes to make sure they aren’t also at risk of bursting. Restoration specialists can assist you in removing water from your home and can restore personal belongings that were damaged by the water.

It’s often helpful for homeowners to know what to do if a problem such as bursting pipes occurs. Stopping the flow of water, turning off your home’s power and contacting professionals in restoration can help to decrease the cost, time and stress spent dealing with a burst pipe.

So give us a call today! We are faster to any disaster and are ready to help make things "Like it never even happened."

Ask The Experts: Should I contact a professional for flood damage?

6/6/2021 (Permalink)

Surviving a flood on your property should always be the first step, dealing with what gets left behind can come later. However, cleaning and restoration are often overwhelming for most homeowners to tackle on their own. You need the right tools, equipment, and resources to treat flood damage in your home correctly and be aware of the possible health risks involved in the work.

Floods can be emotionally and physically exhausting. However, as soon as you get word from local authorities about receding water flow and receive an all-clear about returning to your home after a flood, contact a restoration company. Flood damage in your home only gets worse the longer you wait, get help documenting the damage and start on your home's recovery right away.

Just remember, never enter your home alone. Have a qualified professional with you that can help you avoid causing further damage and any possible hazards that might exist. Flood waters often drag anything and everything along with it, causing contamination to be a primary concern. Without the proper equipment, you can expose members of your family to biological and chemical waste.  

SERVPRO helps you get debris and damaged household goods out of your home quickly and efficiently. With an expedited debris removal process, items that would otherwise sit on your lawn for weeks, or even months, get hauled away immediately under normal circumstances. It also gives our technicians the room they need to begin work on the inside of your home.

SERVPRO gives you a better chance of restoring furniture, appliances, electronics, and personal belongings caught up in the event. Your refrigerator, washer/dryer, air conditioner, stove, water heater, dishwasher, television, computer, stereo, telephone, lamps, and other household goods may not be as damaged as you might think. Each can benefit from an inspection provided by a qualified professional.
SERVPRO has access to water extraction and drying equipment of all shapes and sizes, which allows us the opportunity to get water out of your home faster than ever before. Infrared moisture detectors, hygrometers, air-movers, drying, cleaning, deodorizing and disinfecting after a flood has never been more manageable.
 
Call SERVPRO for flood damage mitigation and restoration services throughout the Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton County area.

Ask The Experts: Is it dangerous to clean up after a flood?

6/6/2021 (Permalink)

When flood damage originates from a storm, we usually classify the waters as either gray or black and handle them with safety protocols based on that classification. Whichever category the standing water in your home falls into does not depend solely on the color or visual appearance of the water, but also on the contents of it and any debris contained within. Here is a brief overview of what goes into each classification, and what each one can mean for your home.

Black Water

Black water is the most severe category of floodwater and is what we deal with most often for cases of flood damage that result from a storm. Black water is any water heavily contaminated with dirt, debris, microorganisms, chemicals, and many more hazardous substances. Most of the time, this type of water should be easy to identify with a dark brown or black color and murky appearance, but heavily contaminated water can sometimes appear gray or even somewhat clear in certain lighting conditions. Wait for a SERVPRO professional to evaluate the situation before you conclude what type of water is in your home. If you do find standing black water anywhere in the building, avoid the room or area in question until one of our technicians can provide you with safety advice. This type of water can be highly dangerous, so be very cautious around it.

Gray Water

Less commonly, SERVPRO technicians may identify floodwaters in your home as gray water, which is a category of water that still contains contaminants but is not as immediately dangerous or severe as black water. However, gray water can still harbor dangerous microorganisms and rapidly develop into black water as these organisms grow and multiply. Be very cautious around all standing water on your property, and avoid entering pools of water without the express permission of our personnel.

We have the experience, expertise, and equipment to restore your commercial building

6/5/2021 (Permalink)

Our SERVPRO team has other specialties other than just mitigation and restoration. Our team also specializes in cleaning. We can clean pretty much anything. And one thing our team likes to clean are carpets for your commercial businesses!

A dirty carpet isn’t something any business wants to have. It looks unprofessional and unkept. Luckily, our SERVPRO team will come in and clean your carpet. 

We take every job seriously and commercial carpet cleaning is one of them! We offer a variety of different carpet cleaning methods.

  • Bonnet Cleaning: A less aggressive method for short piled carpets.
  • Hot Water Extraction: A deeper cleaning method for all carpet types.
  • Deluxe Precondition and Rinse: Helps restore deeply soiled areas.
  • Showcase Premier Cleaning: The most thorough cleaning method in the industry.
  • Dry Cleaning: When color-fastness is an issue.

Call us to schedule a carpet cleaning for your business today.

If fire damages your home, office, or warehouse, SERVPRO is here for you

6/5/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO tackled the aftermath of a fire in a warehouse. The SERVPRO team traveled to help clean and repair the aftermath of a large fire. This fire left water damage along with soot everywhere inside the building. In this instance, the warehouse was heavily stocked with supplies. The SERVPRO team brought in a crew strictly for inventory management. There are many things that the SERVPRO team does well when it comes to the restoration business. One of the many things our team members try to take care of is the items that were in the property when disaster occurs. Our team logs every item they feel that can be saved. 

One of the things that SERVPRO really focused on in this warehouse was the cleaning. Soot coated the ceilings in the warehouse. In this picture, we are seen cleaning all of the soot from the ceilings. Fortunately, the warehouse was able to stay open for hours of operation after the fire.