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What You Should Have in Your Emergency Preparedness Kit?

12/5/2022 (Permalink)

Kit supplies The following items are recommended for a basic first aid kit

What Should Be Included In Your Emergency Kit?

If you're planning to be prepared for the next emergency, you'll want to make sure that your emergency preparedness kit is ready. Of course, there are a lot of things that go into an emergency kit, such as food, water, and medications, but here's a list of some of the items you can't forget:

Water

In addition to food, water is one of the most important things to have in an emergency preparedness kit. You should store a gallon of water per person, per day, for three days. If you need to evacuate your home, you should be able to survive on this amount of water for at least 72 hours. The recommended amount of storage for a home is two weeks' worth, but it's better to overstock than not have enough if disaster strikes.

Food 

It is important to have a supply of food for yourself and your family. Preferably a 3-day supply for evacuation, and a 2-week supply for home use.

Your food supply should consist of that doesn’t need cooking or refrigeration as part of your emergency kit. This includes:

  • Canned meats, fruits and vegetables
  • Cereals and dry foods like crackers, peanut butter and granola bars
  • Powdered milk products such as powdered eggs or formula for infants

Flashlight

A flashlight is an essential item to have in your emergency kit. A flashlight can help you to see in dark places, and it will also be useful if the power goes out. Flashlights should have a high-quality, durable light bulb that won't burn out right away. 

Battery-powered radio

Another important tool in your kit is a battery-powered radio. You will be able to use this device to stay informed about the weather, as well as find out what it's like in your area. Most importantly, you'll also be able to use it to find out if there are any severe weather alerts that might require evacuation or other action on your part.

First aid kit

The following items are recommended for a basic first aid kit:

  • bandages - adhesive bandages, gauze pads, sterile gauze pads and adhesive tape.
  • eye wash and eye pads.
  • analgesic gel or sting relief cream to treat insect bites or stings, such as wasp or bee stings.
  • antiseptic solution (such as iodine) to clean wounds and prevent infection.

7 day supply of medications 

When you’re preparing for an emergency, it’s important to have a supply of medications and medical items in your kit. The quantity of each item varies based on your family size and needs.

  • 7-day supply of over-the-counter medications: Allergy medication, fever reducer (e.g., Tylenol), pain reliever (e.g., ibuprofen), stomach upset treatment (e.g., Pepto Bismol), electrolyte replacement drink mix (e.g., Pedialyte)
  • Any prescription medications 

It is also important to have toilet paper, paper towels and hand sanitizer on hand during an emergency. You should also include feminine hygiene products in your kit if you think you might need them.

Copies of personal documents

These include birth certificates, social security cards, passports and other identification papers. They are also useful as a source of information if you ever need to apply for new forms of identification or get in touch with family members following an emergency.

If you want to keep your papers dry during an emergency, it’s best store them in a waterproof container such as a Ziploc baggie or plastic tub. These are widely available at any grocery store.

As you can see, there are a lot of things to consider when it comes to preparing an emergency kit. Hopefully this list has given you some ideas about what should be included in yours. If you find yourself lacking any of these items, don’t worry—the best time to prepare for an emergency is now. Just take some time to think about what situations might come up and how they will affect your family or community. 

How to Fix a Flooded Basement?

11/1/2022 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement A flooded basement in Forest City, NC.

How to Repair a Flooded Basement

A flooded basement is a nightmare. The water can ruin your home and your possessions, and the cleanup process can be frustrating and difficult. But there's no need to panic! There are steps you can take to limit the damage caused by flooding, clean up your basement quickly, and make sure it doesn't happen again.

Drain water

It’s important to remove as much of the water as quickly as possible. You can use a wet/dry vacuum, a pump, or even a shop vac. This is especially true if you have carpeting in your basement because wet carpets will lead to mold growth and other problems if they aren't removed immediately.

Clean-up

Next, it's time to clean up the mess. You'll need to remove wet and damaged items from your basement, and then remove any standing water. For instance:

  • Remove any wet insulation that has fallen down from the walls or ceiling. If you can't get it out of there on your own, call a professional for help.
  • Remove all wet carpeting in your basement so it doesn't cause mold growth later on (or smell awful). If you don't have the money right away for new carpeting, consider renting out a machine that will suck up excess moisture and dirt in your carpets so they can dry faster.
  • Remove all drywall damaged by flooding as soon as possible; chances are good that if it was hit with enough water over an extended period of time, mold spores will have been embedded into the paper backing—and if those spores haven't already appeared yet, they likely will soon!

Drying out

Now that you've removed your wet belongings from the basement, it's time to start the drying process. One of the most effective ways to get rid of moisture is through dehumidifiers and fans.

Dehumidifiers are great for removing moisture because they use a refrigeration system to absorb water into their internal compartment, which acts as a cooling agent when heated by an internal heater. This method works well because dehumidifiers pull air in through their vents and expel it out through another vent at a higher temperature than that which originally entered the machine—which means it also removes any excess humidity (water vapor) along with it!

Fans can help speed up this process as well by circulating air throughout your basement space. It isn't uncommon for basements to become moldy in areas where there's been standing water or excessive dampness over time; using fans can help prevent this from happening while also speeding up drying time overall so you don't have to wait around forever before moving back into your home again! You may also want to consider installing exhaust fans near windows going out toward open spaces such as yards or streets so any remaining moisture gets released outside rather than building up inside your house next door instead."

The cleanup needs to be handled quickly and professionally

You need a professional to perform the cleanup of your flooded basement. One with experience, who knows what needs doing and can do it quickly. You need someone with the right equipment for the job, and most importantly, someone you can trust. The longer the water sits, the more damage it can cause to your Forest City, NC, home. If you need help with your flooded basement cleanup, contact our SERVPRO of Lake Lure Forest City team today!

How Do I Know If My Fire Sprinklers Are Working Properly?

10/5/2022 (Permalink)

Fire sprinkler It’s important to make sure that your fire sprinklers are in good working order before a fire occurs.

How Can I Tell If My Fire Sprinklers Are Operating Correctly?

Fire sprinklers are a great way to keep your building safe from fire and can help minimize the damage caused by fires. It’s important to make sure that your fire sprinklers are in good working order before a fire occurs. Regular maintenance and inspections of your Marion, NC, building's fire sprinklers will prevent damage or loss of life due to an unwanted or unexpected fire.

Fire sprinklers are a great way to help prevent fires.

Fire sprinklers are a great way to help prevent fires from spreading and causing extensive damage. They can also limit the amount of smoke that fills a structure during a fire, which makes cleanup easier.

When it comes to fire sprinkler systems, you have two main choices: fixed or portable. Each type has its own advantages based on your needs, but both will be able to stop smaller fires before they get out of control and cause major damage.

Fire sprinklers cannot completely contain a fire

Smoke detectors are a great way to detect fires, but they cannot completely stop or contain fires in your home. Fire sprinklers use water or foam to put out the flames and cool down hot spots. They also can limit the amount of smoke that fills a structure during a fire, which makes cleanup easier.

Fire sprinklers work by releasing water automatically when heat from an open flame reaches a certain temperature; this causes the sprinkler heads to open and release their contents onto the fire source. The amount of time it takes for this process depends on how quickly the sprinkler head opens and how soon after activation that water starts flowing out of it.

There are different types of fire sprinklers available depending on what type of space they're intended for (such as residential homes) so make sure you know which ones fit your needs best before installing them yourself!

Regular maintenance is crucial

It’s important to make sure that your fire sprinklers are in good working order before a fire occurs. As part of the inspection, check for any signs of damage and make sure that the system is functioning properly. If it isn't, replace or repair any parts needed to get it up and running again.

Fire sprinklers should be inspected annually by a qualified technician. They can fail without warning, which would leave you unprotected in the event of a fire. In fact, they are one of the best ways to help prevent fires from spreading and causing extensive damage—especially if you have an older home or building with wooden walls and ceilings (like many churches do).

When it comes to fire sprinklers, the best course of action is to get them checked out as soon as possible. If you don’t have a professional on staff who can do this, call a fire sprinkler company that offers their services. They can make sure everything is working properly so you don’t have any surprises when a fire starts up in your building! If your home or business in Marion, NC, suffers from fire and smoke damage, don’t hesitate and give our SERVPRO of Lake Lure Forest City team a call for all your fire damage cleanup and restoration needs!

3 Steps To Take After a Fire in Your Home

8/12/2022 (Permalink)

Home Destroyed By Fire With Caved In Roof Call fire restoration professionals after experiencing a fire

Three Steps to Follow After a Home Fire

 If your home in Marion, NC is affected by a fire, you will likely want to begin the fire restoration process as quickly as possible. There are several measurements you can take to help quicken the restoration process.

1. Contact Your Insurance Provider

After a fire has occurred in your home, it’s often helpful to contact your insurance provider in order to learn what your fire insurance will cover. Though every insurance company is different, damage from a fire is often covered, at least in part, by insurance. By talking with someone at your insurance company, you can also learn about the next steps your company may require you to take in order to complete your claim.

2. Avoid Causing Further Damage

Although you may be tempted to enter your home as soon as possible after a fire, this isn’t always the best idea. By entering your home after a fire, you could potentially worsen any structural damage, which could slow down the fire restoration process. Additionally, disturbing soot in the home could damage property and could cause respiratory issues. It’s often best to allow professionals who have the proper equipment to remove items from your home.

3. Request Board Up Services

When a home has been damaged by a fire, it’s often important that the home is protected in order to prevent more damage from occurring. Boarding up your home can help keep out wind and rain in addition to making it more difficult for thieves to enter the home. Once your home has been boarded up, the process of smoke cleaning and making structural fixes can begin.

The fire restoration process can often be made easier if you know how to properly make a fire claim and keep your home safe. If you need assistance restoring your home, it could be helpful to get in touch with fire damage restoration professionals.

How To Create a Solid Fire Preparation Plan

7/28/2022 (Permalink)

Signs for the evacuation plan of the building in case of fire or a hazardous incident. Your fire preparation plan must include simple evacuation routes.

Fire Preparation Plan

A fire in your building in Saluda, NC, requires swift action. You need a fire preparation plan so that you can evacuate your building quickly. A solid plan can also prevent excessive damage to the building itself.

Fire System
A fundamental necessity for detecting problems and reducing fire damage is a reliable fire system. A good fire alarm and suppression system consists of a few key elements:

  • Smoke detectors in or near every room
  • Control panel that reports alerts to a central location
  • Sprinkler system that activates when the temperature gets too high

A functional fire alarm system lets you know where smoke is located. According to fire restoration specialists, while a sprinkler system may cause water damage when it is triggered, this problem is relatively small compared to the havoc that an unchecked fire can wreak.

Evacuation Routes
No matter where the fire is located or how big it is, you want to make sure you can get everyone out of the building in an efficient manner. Your fire preparation plan must include simple evacuation routes. Make a map of the quickest way to get out of the building from every location, ensuring that the route does not intersect with the path that firefighters will be used to put out the fire. Post the evacuation route in every hallway and beside every door.

Action Plan
In addition to alerts and pathways for escape, any disaster preparation plan needs a detailed list of what is expected of everyone involved. For example, who is in charge of making sure everyone is accounted for once you reach the designated safe space? Who is tasked with communicating with the emergency personnel if necessary? Make a checklist of what will need to be done in the event of a fire and who is responsible for each task.
Every business owner dreads the thought of a fire in his or her building, but it's still important to be prepared. The key factors in a solid fire preparation plan are minimizing damage and getting everyone to safety.

4 Steps to Preventing Water Damage in Your Home While on Vacation

7/19/2022 (Permalink)

Water gauge pressure, hand shut off main valve, close-up. Shutting off the water supply line.

Prevent Water Damage In Your Home

One of the worst ways to end your vacation is returning to your home in Union Mills, NC, and finding that it’s flooded due to a broken pipe. There are some precautions you can take to prevent unexpected water damage. If you are planning on being away from home for more than a couple of days, it’s recommended you keep a checklist to follow, so you can avoid costly water pipe repair.

1. Clear Away Exterior Debris

It’s good practice to routinely check points around your home where leaves and other debris collect, such as gutters. Inspecting your home’s exterior before leaving will provide you with an added sense of security.

2. Keep Pipes and Spigots Insulated

If you live in a northern climate and plan to vacation during the winter months, one practical way to protect pipes is to cover them with an insulation sleeve. Covers are also available for spigots. Disconnect any hoses that aren’t in use, such as garden hoses.

3. Inspect Your Home for Leaks

Simply taking the time to inspect your home for leaks, or the potential thereof could prevent water pipe repair down the road. The most obvious places to check are all sinks, toilets, and tubs. Look them over thoroughly for any signs of seepage, dripping, dampness, or rust. Don’t forget some of the less obvious places, such as the water heater.

Water can also leak in through broken window seals and the roof. While you’re surveying your home in Union Mills, NC, you might as well check for missing or broken shingles and weak areas. Your goal is to keep from returning to a flooded mess.

4. Shut the Water Off

Even if you’re planning on asking someone you trust to stop by and check on your home periodically, it’s recommended to turn off the main water line. Remember to let all of the water drain from the faucets and toilet tanks will alleviate pressure buildup and help prevent the possibility of a broken pipe.

Taking a few simple precautions before you leave on vacation allows you to better relax and enjoy your time away. It also goes a long way toward preventing water pipe repair.

FAQs About Cleaning Under Your Home After a Flood

7/12/2022 (Permalink)

technician wearing protective gear going into a crawl space. Cleaning a crawlspace in a home in Nebo, NC.

A home flood in Nebo, NC, can cause a devastating amount of damage. Though many homeowners are eager to begin cleaning their homes, few people realize that the area underneath houses often need to be cleaned after a flood. Here are a few helpful things to know about cleaning crawlspaces after a flood.

What Are Signs of a Damaged Crawlspace?

Though damage in a crawlspace may not be immediately apparent, identifying damage in a timely manner is often important. The following are common indicators that a crawlspace has been affected by a storm:

  • An unpleasant, musty odor in areas above and around the crawlspace due to mold growth
  • Damaged subfloors or warped vinyl floors
  • High levels of humidity in rooms above the crawlspace

What Causes Damage to Crawlspaces?

A home flood can cause major damage to both the interior and exterior of a home, and though crawlspaces are often overlooked, they are still prone to damage. When water quickly accumulates underneath a home and is not removed or drained, the structure of a home can be affected. Damage to crawlspaces can also occur if there are high levels of humidity in the area, which can cause building materials to absorb the moisture and weaken.

How Can Under Your House Be Cleaned?

Fortunately, there are steps that professionals from a storm damage restoration company can take to clean your home’s crawlspace. First, water is removed under the crawlspace. If mold and high levels of humidity remain present after the water is removed, professionals may create negative air pressure in the area to dry up the area. Once the crawlspace is dry, professionals can restore or replace any building materials that have been damaged.

Though a home flood can wreak havoc on your home, it can be useful to understand more about cleaning underneath your home. Knowing the signs of a damaged crawlspace, common causes of damage and how the underside of your house is cleaned can make the cleanup process seem less complex.

4 Common Flood Mistakes To Avoid

6/25/2022 (Permalink)

entrance of a House fully flooded during the flooding of the river Flood damage to a home in Rutherfordton, NC.

Four Common Flood Mistakes To Avoid

Flooding poses a wide range of personal safety and property damage risks. Homeowners should be aware of the potential dangers of a flooded home in order to make more informed decisions. Here are four common mistakes that many homeowners make when attempting to eliminate flood water.

1. Mitigating Before Documenting

If mitigation begins before a homeowner documents the full extent of damage, it may be harder to make a flood damage claim and receive full compensation. Capture the worst of the damage in photographs or videos prior to pumping out standing water.

2. Making Direct Contact With Flood Water

Restoration professionals classify flooding as Category Three black water, which may contain chemicals and solid waste. Homeowners and mitigation workers should wear waterproof boots, hip waders, and other personal protective equipment while documenting or cleaning up damage inside a flooded home.

3. Turning the Power On or Off

It can be as risky to attempt to shut off a circuit breaker as it would be to turn on a switch or appliance anywhere in a residence that has suffered flood damage. Avoid electrocution by contacting an electrician or utility company and having an expert disconnect the electrical meter.

4. Delaying the Start of Cleanup

As soon as the damage has been documented and a homeowner has checked in with a flood insurance provider, there is no need to wait to start damage mitigation. Standing water will cause increasing damage to building materials and contents and mold may start to form within just 24 to 48 hours.

These mistakes are easy for homeowners to make. Knowing the risks associated with flood water can reduce the risk of personal injury, problems making a flood damage claim or secondary damage. Homeowners should stay in contact with a flood insurance provider and rely on the expertise of storm and water damage restoration professionals in Rutherfordton, NC.

How Can SERVPRO Help With Your Insurance Claim?

6/14/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO green trailer SERVPRO's disaster mitigation crews can arrive at your property faster than any other service.

How Can SERVPRO Help With Your Insurance Claim?

Recovering from a fire, flood, or any other disaster at your commercial property in Spindale, NC, could be overwhelming, and navigating an insurance claim can add to your headaches. Fortunately, you can rely on claim services as part of the emergency response assistance SERVPRO offers. 

Damage Mitigation
You can count on the fastest possible response from professional teams who know how to prevent further damage to your place of business. SERVPRO's disaster mitigation crews can arrive at your property faster than any other service to prevent secondary damage from:

  • Mold due to sitting water after extinguishing a fire or a plumbing-related flood
  • Chemical contamination of the air due to burning synthetics
  • Electrical fires due to water-soaked wiring

Immediate disaster response can prevent secondary damage to increase your insurance provider's likelihood of covering your losses.  

A Full Range of Claim Services
Gathering everything your insurance provider needs to process your claim can be challenging, especially if you cannot access your property following a disaster. Fortunately, you can rely on SERVPRO's claim coordinators to inventory and photograph your losses, provide repair or replacement estimates, and communicate directly with claims adjusters to ensure the processing of your claim as quickly as possible.

Reliable and Trustworthy
You can count on a thorough and effective cleaning and restoration of your property by SERVPRO's urgent response teams. Your insurer can also expect a fair and accurate assessment of your losses from a team that works directly with adjusters to avoid unnecessary delays and inaccuracies when processing your claim. In addition, emergency mitigation efforts that focus on preventing further damage help you return to business as quickly as possible, and insurance companies avoid overspending on claims.
Business owners in Spindale, NC, who rely upon SERVPRO's urgent response and claim services following a disaster have the satisfaction of returning to businesses that look "Like it never even happened."

Cleaning Your BBQ Grill: 3 Simple Tips

6/2/2022 (Permalink)

Cleaning a grill at a summer barbecue party. Cleaning your grill can reduce the risk of a fire.

Grill Cleaning Tips

When barbeque season comes to Mill Spring, NC, you probably look forward to creating a variety of delicious meals for your family. However, before you use your grill for the first time this season, learning a few handy grill cleaning tips can reduce the risk of fire, give your unit a longer life and make your grilled food taste better.

1. Burn Off Excess Grease
You can prevent a grease fire in your charcoal or gas grill by lighting the unit, closing the hood and letting it run at its usual temperature to burn away any grease deposits you may have missed when you cleaned and stored the grill previously. Allow the grill to run for at least 30 minutes to ensure all the grease softens or burns off.

2. Soak and Scrub
Grill cleaning can be simpler once you let the parts soak in hot, soapy water. You can also use a store-bought grill cleaner to remove especially tough stains. If your gas grill includes stainless steel parts, use a cleanser specially designed for cleaning the metal to protect the finish. Most gas grills feature removable burner tubes and control knobs, so remember to clean these thoroughly as well.

3. Practice Safe Grill Maintenance While Cleaning
Grill cleaning can be dangerous unless you practice proper safety measures throughout the process. Make sure all the parts cool completely before you handle them and remain especially cautious when cleaning your gas grill to prevent leaks. A fire mitigation and cleanup company can provide you with information about the dangers of gas leaks and their relation to serious fires.
Barbeque season in Mill Spring, NC, is usually an exciting time and gives you and your family the opportunity to share delicious meals together. Knowing how to properly prepare your grill for the summer can help ensure that the food you cook on it, whether charcoal or gas-fueled, can make all the difference in the taste and flavor of your grilled meals.