National Preparedness Month Tips
National Preparedness Month is sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) within the Department of Homeland Security. For the entire month of September, this initiative encourages people to take steps to prepare for emergencies in their homes, businesses, schools, and communities.
The devastating wildfires, hurricanes and earthquakes in 2017 and 2018 show the importance of preparing for disasters. Seeing that these disasters can strike in any shape or form at any given time, it is important to prepare in advance to help yourself and your community. Ask your community how you can volunteer.
Business also need to be prepared. Ask us about out Emergency Ready Program. It is imperative to have all the shut off information to your water, electric, and gas handy in case of an emergency. SERVPRO of Sumter can help with all that. We even have an app you can download so all the information can be at your fingertips.
Don't Let A Hurricane Leave You In A Twist
How to Prepare for a Hurricane
Hurricanes are massive storm systems that form over ocean water and often move toward land.
Threats from hurricanes include high winds, heavy rainfall, storm surge, coastal and inland flooding, rip currents, and tornadoes. The heavy winds of hurricanes can cause damage or destroy homes, buildings, and roads, as well as cause power, water, and gas outages. These effects can injure or kill people, disrupt transportation, and pollute drinking water. Hurricanes cause deaths and injuries primarily from drowning, wind, and wind-borne debris. The impact from hurricanes can extend from the coast to several hundred miles inland. To find your risk, visit FEMA’s “Know Your Risk Map.” Be better prepared for this hurricane season, and learn more at ready.gov/prepare. Sign up for local alerts and
warnings. Monitor local news and weather reports. Prepare to evacuate by testing your emergency communication plan(s), learning evacuation routes, having a place to stay, and packing a “go bag.” Stock emergency supplies. Protect your property by installing sewer back flow valves, anchoring fuel tanks, reviewing insurance policies, and cataloging belongings. Collect and safeguard critical financial, medical, educational, and legal documents and records.. Follow guidance from local authorities. If advised to evacuate, grab your “go bag” and leave immediately. For protection from high winds, stay away from windows and seek shelter on the lowest level in an interior room. Move to higher ground if there is flooding or a flood warning. Turn Around Don’t Drown.® Never walk or drive on flooded roads or through water. Call 9-1-1 if you are in life threatening danger. Return to the area only after authorities say it is safe to do so. Do not enter damaged buildings until they are inspected by qualified professionals. Never walk or drive on flooded roads or through floodwaters. Look out for downed or unstable trees, poles, and power lines. Do not remove heavy debris by yourself. Wear gloves and sturdy, thick-soled shoes to protect your hands and feet. Do not drink tap water unless authorities say it is safe.
How you put out the fire could increase your damage.
Fires often trigger damage in a way homeowners do not expect: significant water damage. Whether during the efforts to put the fire out or leaks caused by the heat, fire can directly or indirectly cause your home to take on large amounts of water unexpectedly.
Fast response after the fire out is very important. Your furniture and belongs need immediate attention if they have been saturated with water and debris from the extinguishing of the fire.
Growth, swelling of wood, and rust are some of the things that can happen to your belongings after they have been through a fire.
Remember the first 48 hours after a fire damage can make the difference between restoring versus replacing. SERVPRO Professionals can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term affects.
Ozone can help make hard to reach smell a thing of the past.
Ozone is a colorless unstable toxic gas with a pungent odor and powerful oxidizing properties, formed from oxygen by electrical discharges or ultraviolet light. It differs from normal oxygen (O2) in having three atoms in its molecule (O3). Ozone treatments are one of the best tools for removing odor caused by smoke damage. Ozone works to remove odors by chemically changing the structure of the molecules in the smoke that are creating the smell. The extra oxygen atom attaches itself to the other molecules to create a new molecule that is non-offensive—and non-smelly—in a process called oxidation. As a gas, ozone can clean anywhere air is allowed to flow. That’s one of the features that makes it so effective in removing odors that other cleaning techniques just can’t touch.
Proper HVAC maintain will keep you cool and dry during the summer.
Coming home to soaked carpet or ceiling damage isn’t fun. But it happens more often than you think. Here are some of the most common reasons your HVAC unit will leak inside your home.
Air Filters are easy to forget about. The average homeowner only changes their air filter 4 times a year, and if you forget…. bad things can happen.
A low refrigerant level can also cause your unit to freeze. Low refrigerant could be the sign of a refrigerant leak in your HVAC unit.
CLOGGED DRAIN LINE
Your drain pan sits under your unit and catches and excess water created by your HVAC unit. If this pan accumulates dust or algae, it can cause the drain to be clogged. A clogged drain line will cause your pan to over flow which means dripping water and water damage.
Each HVAC unit has a drain line. Sometimes drain lines become disconnected and you start to notice puddles of water or water damage coming from your unit.
The first thing you need to do is shut off your HVAC unit if any of this is happening then you want to call your service man to locate and fix the problem. After this has been done it is time for SERVPRO Professionals to come assess your damage from the water and dry your home properly.
Fire tips until help arrives.
Here are some helpful tips prior to the arrival of SERVPRO® of Sumter:
Emergency Fire and Smoke Damage Tips
- Limit movement in the home to prevent further damage.
- Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on carpeted traffic areas to prevent more soiling.
- If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
- Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets and appliances then protect with a light coating of lubricant.
- Do not attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting a SERVPRO Franchise Professional.
- Do not attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting a SERVPRO Franchise Professional.
- Do not attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire or water without consulting a repair service.
Fire and Smoke Damage Services
- Emergency Response: Reduce Loss Severity/Pretesting for Restorability.
- Contents Cleaning Specialists: On-Site or Move Out.
- Structural Restoration Services.
- Large Loss Completion with Trained Crew Leaders.
Hidden dangers in old buildings
When a loss happens in an old commercial building it may on the surface appear like a residential loss, but can truly be far different and possibly more dangerous.
Old buildings could contain hazardous building materials such as asbestos, lead, polychlorinated bisphenols (PCBs), chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), heavy metals, or even radioactive materials due to limited knowledge of the safety risks that exposures to these materials posed.
Due to the safety risks posed regulations have been set on federal, state, and local levels on how these materials must he handed and disposed of.
If you have a loss at your business do not try to take on the mitigation yourself and unknowingly risk possible exposure to one of these hazardous materials, call SERVPRO so we may put our knowledge and network of professionals to work safely restoring your business back to preloss conditions.
Thunder is the sound caused by lightning.
The intense heat from lightning causes the surrounding air to rapidly expand and create a sonic wave that you hear as thunder.
The average temperature of lightning is around 20000 °C (36000 °F).
The sound of thunder can be anything from a loud crack to a low rumble.
Light travels faster than sound so we see lightning before we hear thunder.
The closer you are, the shorter the gap between the lightning and thunder.
The speed of sound is around 767 miles per hour (1,230 kilometres per hour).
The speed of light is around 669600000 miles per hour (1080000000 kilometres per hour).
Thunder is difficult to hear at distances over 12 miles (20 kilometres).
Thousands of years ago philosophers such as Aristotle believed that thunder was caused by the collision of clouds.
Astraphobia is the fear of thunder and lightning.
Regular carpet cleaning can add months or years to your carpet life.
Proper carpet care can be a complicated part of commercial cleaning and facility management. A ton of cleaning choices are available, and deciding what carpet cleaning process or chemical to use can be a confusing task.
Up-to-date vacuums can reduce cleaning times. In some environments, traditional upright vacuums cannot be used efficiently due to furniture and other impediments.
Carpeting should be vacuumed as much as possible. Foot traffic and airborne impurities like dust, pollen and other contaminants end up in carpet fiber along with hair, dander, skin and dust mites.
Provide manual spotting tools to employees so that they can perform regular spot removal.
Look for certified products when making the change to sustainable carpet cleaning. Just because a product or service is green certified, that doesn’t mean it won’t damage carpet materials during the cleaning process.
Routine maintenance is the key to carpet appearance and longevity.
Let us help you church weather the storm.
Your place of worship is your congregation's shelter, helping shield them from the storms of life. But if life's literal storms damage your place of worship or if your cleaning needs go beyond the reach of your staff, call your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals.
No stain is too small and no storm damage is too large for the SERVPRO System. SERVPRO Professionals have the training, experience, resources and equipment to restore and clean places of worship quickly, helping make it "Like it never even happened."
Catastrophic Storm and Major Event Response.
The SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team can provide help whether you're dealing with a tornado, hurricane, blizzard or flood. The SERVPRO System has a network of strategically positioned storm teams on standby should a disaster strike near you.