Recent Storm Damage Posts
What You Should Have in Your Emergency Preparedness Kit?
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:
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.
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
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.
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.
FAQs About Cleaning Under Your Home After a Flood
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
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.
4 Important Things To Know About a Flood Cut
A flood cut is a cut made into the drywall, insulation, and other materials to avoid contamination and further damage.
Four Crucial Flood Cut Facts
Most homeowners, especially those in flood zones, fear to flood. The potential damage a flood can cause is nightmare fuel even to the most prepared homeowners. Still, according to storm damage remediation services in Saluda, NC, recovery is likely possible after most floods, and one recovery technique used frequently is the flood cut.
A flood cut is a cut made into the drywall, insulation, and other materials to avoid contamination and further damage. At its most basic, a flood cut is a mitigation technique.
A mitigation specialist will cut away the materials about 12-inches above the flood line. The reason companies cut above the flood line is to access dry materials.
2. Important of Tear Out
After heavy flooding occurs, the wall cavities can act as sponges and traps for excess water. Without a flood cut, the water remains trapped, and mold is likely to grow. Opening the wall cavity allows remediation teams to remove moisture damage and dry out the space, reducing the risks of further damage.
3. Restoration of Property
While it might seem counterproductive, a flood cut is a necessary step in property restoration. The cut and removal of damaged materials allow the restoration service access to essential structural components. They can assess the materials to ensure there are no risks to the structural integrity of the wall and house.
4. Professional Assistance
While homeowners might think a flood cut is a DIY process, it is best to use a professional service. You never know the trouble that might be lurking behind a wall. Having professionals on-site to deal with any issues that arise is a wise decision.
The aftermath of flooding is challenging to deal with. A professional service can help by using the necessary techniques to mitigate further loss. A flood cut is one of the most useful mitigation tactics professionals use.
Winter Storm Tips
Make sure that yours are insulated against cold temperatures.
How To Prepare For a Winter Storm
Facing an impending winter storm in Lake Lure, NC? Whether it is a blizzard or some other kind of event, winter weather is no joke - keep your family and your home safer with these tips:
1. Keep supplies handy. Make a list of necessities and winter tools that you will need to brave the storm. If you have time, go shopping for the ones you are missing, and then find a place in your house to keep everything so you know where supplies are in case you need them when the storm hits.
2. Check your roof, gutters and siding. You may not think it would be the case, but all of these parts of your house can be damaged in a winter storm. Make sure they are all in good working shape before the weather gets dangerous.
3. Insulate your pipes. A burst pipe can cause a real disaster in a storm. Make sure that yours are insulated against cold temperatures.
4. Seal any air leaks. Air leaks are not a good sign, as they can lead to a home that is subject to extremely cold temperatures. You might just find that you save on energy costs when you fix these leaks, as well.
5. Trim trees. If an overgrown tree branch falls in a storm, your home, property and family are all at risk of being in a dangerous situation. Keep your greenery trimmed for better safety in a storm.
Now that you know how to prepare for a winter storm, it is time to learn what to do if roof damage or other issues should occur despite your best preparation efforts. A reliable residential storm damage company can help you with water destruction and many other effects of a storm. It is better to prepare for the worst than to be stuck with no knowledge of how to handle damage if it does occur.
Top 4 Causes of Sewer Backups
Tree roots can infiltrate pipes and cause a backing up of sewage into your home.
Four Common Causes of Sewage Backups
Most residents of Lake Lure, NC, probably take the community’s sewer system for granted. However, it’s a critical component of the municipal infrastructure that can malfunction and cause significant problems for homeowners, such as a flooded basement. Understanding four common causes of sewage backups can help you minimize your risk and possibly spare you a messy cleanup.
1. Tree Root Infiltration
Tree roots can infiltrate pipes and cause a backing up of sewage into your home. To help reduce the likelihood of this dilemma, you should identify the location of sewer lines before planting any trees and shrubs. Keeping vegetation a safe distance from pipes may prevent root infiltration and the need for a line cleaning.
2. A System Overwhelmed by Storm Water
In many communities, storm water channels and sewage lines converge. If a significant storm dumps an excessive amount of rain, the system may become overwhelmed, causing a backing up of waste water. If your home is not equipped with a back-flow valve or other control device, the situation may cause a flooded basement.
3. Clogged Pipes
Clogged pipes are another serious issue that can result in a sewage backup. Items such as paper towels, feminine napkins, diapers and wipes should never be flushed down the toilet. Placing these products into the trash helps minimize the risk of potentially devastating clogs.
4. Damaged Pipes
Like many other components of a community’s infrastructure, sewer lines can deteriorate over time. Symptoms of a potential problem include consistently slow drains and a lingering sewage gas odor. If you have concerns about your home’s plumbing, you should promptly contact a licensed plumber who can properly evaluate your system, as well as diagnose and address any existing issues.
Sewage backing up that results in a flooded basement is an experience all homeowners hope to avoid. Although every home is potentially susceptible to this extremely messy dilemma, understanding common causes can help you take proactive measures to minimize risks and possibly avoid extensive cleanup and restoration endeavors.
It’s All on the Surface: How Surface Water May be Causing Your Flooded Basement
Keep your gutters clean.
Prevent a Flooded Basement In Your Home
A flooded basement can be caused by surface water flooding, meaning external water that is not draining properly away from your home. There are a few things you can do to help protect your foundation and prevent this type of flooding.
1. Dealing with Roofline Overflow
Overflowing and clogged gutter systems can result in significant damage, overflow from gutters can lead to the wearing away of soil and foundational cracks. The three most common causes of gutter system overflow and basement flooding are:
• Leaf Buildup: Gutters should be cleaned a few times per year, typically at the change of seasons. When debris is left to clog the gutters, the overflow trickles down exterior walls and into your basement.
• Insufficient Downspouts: If there are not enough downspouts, or if they are an inadequate diameter, then water can overflow during heavy rains.
• Inadequate Downspout Length: Downspouts should extend at least 10 feet away from your home.
2. Preventing Flooding Due to Landscape Design
If not sloped properly, landscaping can force surface water to settle toward the house, which if left unchecked, will weaken the soil around your foundation and lead to cracks in basement walls, allowing water to enter. Avoid this issue by ensuring all landscaping, pathways, and driveways slope away from your home. If this is not possible, then invest in a proper drainage system around your home that will carry water away from your foundation.
3. Reducing the Risk of Storm Water Backing Up
For many older homes, city storm sewers are connected to a perimeter drain. While a sump pump can prevent the risk of water backing up, when heavy rains hit, storm drains can become overwhelmed and leave your sump pump ill-equipped to handle the surge. Installing a cap on the external drain can resolve the issue but may involve the assistance of storm damage specialists in the Nebo, NC, area.
A flooded basement may be easily prevented by eliminating common causes of surface water flooding. Ensuring gutter systems are adequate, sloping landscaping away from your foundation, and capping off nuisance drain pipes are several ways to help you prevent future flooding.
Bathtub Sewer Backup: Should You DIY or Call an Expert?
Structural issues and mold growth are much costlier to remediate than a bit of water.
Not much is worse than dealing with a sewer backup in your home, except maybe dealing with a bathtub backup. Your bathtub is a place where you're supposed to get clean, so the thought of sewage contaminating your bathing surface can be repulsive. If you're like most homeowners, you want to deal with the mess immediately, but before you do, you need to determine whether or not your particular mess is a DIY job or a job for the experts. Below are four questions you should ask yourself before attempting to clean the mess on your own:
• How bad is the damage?
• How long has the water been sitting?
• What kind of water are you dealing with?
• What kind of objects have been contaminated?
• Do you have enough ventilation to complete the job on your own?
If you answered "I don't know" to any of the above questions, leave the cleanup to the Forest City, NC, sewer backup cleaning experts.
Why Calling in the Pros is the Best Thing for Yours, Your Home's and Your Bank Account's Health
It's understandable that you want to save money on cleanup efforts, but saving now may cause you more headaches in the long run. For one, you risk your own health by attempting to handle possibly hazardous waste on your own and without proper protective gear. That alone makes DIY cleanup not worth the savings.
Two, because you don't have the proper training to deal with home flooding, you risk missing major issues. For instance, your bathtub may appear to be the only object affected, but for all you know, the floorboards got soaked as well. If you don't properly dry out wet materials, you risk water damage and costly structural issues—not to mention mold growth.
Three, structural issues and mold growth are much costlier to remediate than a bit of water. You stand to save more by allowing a professional to properly clean up the sewer backup mess sooner rather than later.
Addressing Storm Damage
Hail damage on the roof in a home in Mill Spring, NC.
Resolving Storm Damage
Storm damage is a concern to homeowners, but for residents in Mill Spring, NC, high winds and falling hail might specifically put you in need of roof repair. The roof is the most exposed element of a house, making it susceptible to damage. Always wait until a storm has passed before taking the following steps to address storm damage.
1. Check for exterior damage. Carefully exit your home and check around the yard for fallen limbs, missing tiles, or scattered debris. Look for branches that might have been knocked onto your roof affecting chimney bricks or satellite dish locations. Check roof edges, trim, vent locations, or flashing for wind damage, looking for spots where water can seep in.
Hail damage requires a closer inspection of the roof, but keep safety a priority. Roof repair might be necessary if dark or soft spots are found, roofing felt is exposed and multiple shingles are dimpled, cracked or broken.
2. Check for interior damage. If high winds or hail have done roof damage, a check of your attic or ceiling is necessary. Examine molding or walls for stains that are brown or rust colored, indicating a leak in the roof. If your paint is peeling or bubbling, water could be seeping in and may be trapped between the walls.
3. Address damage locations. You can keep the damage to a minimum by addressing problems as quickly as possible. Use a shop vac to clean up bigger pools of water, while well-placed fans can begin drying walls or insulation. Replace weakened framing support or roofing tiles if able, covering the inside floor beneath with drop cloths or buckets to maintain interior protection. You can use tarps or boards to cover roof locations that require more extensive work.
Roof repair is an unfortunate situation that storms with high winds and hail can cause homeowners. Be sure to safely inspect storm damage, moving on to address the areas as you are able. For bigger jobs, call in the experts to lend a hand.
How Can Property Managers Prepare for a Big Storm?
Board up the windows of your building.
When a big storm hits Marion, NC, every property manager knows they’re in for a rough ride. Storm preparedness should be a key part of a manager’s strategy for the highest ROI – and the lowest stress. Fortunately, the process is both painless and inexpensive in most cases – especially when a property has been well-maintained.
What Are the Two Prongs of a Storm Readiness Plan?
Being prepared for a storm can be split into two parts: short-term and long-term planning. When a storm watch is announced, it’s going to be too late to start some planning – and there probably will be a run on supplies, such as:
- Ratcheting tie-downs
What Should be Done for Long-Term Planning?
Anything that can be purchased well in advance should be. Plus, your local storm damage restoration specialists can set up a free Emergency Readiness Profile for your business and perform a no-cost site analysis for storm preparedness.
One great option is to have storm shutters installed. Many can be closed in a hurry, so even sudden storms can be blocked. Another is to purchase low-cost, empty sandbags and keep them on-site. When a large storm is approaching, you can often fill them at local locations to barricade your building from floodwater.
How About Short-Term?
When the storm is a couple of days away, emergency supplies will disappear out of stores, so either have what you need or act immediately. Board up windows put all important paperwork in a safe, water-resistant location and back up anything possible to a secure cloud account. If possible, get your business vehicles in a safe place or have them driven out of town.
As soon as Marion, NC, has a storm warning, shut off all utilities, make sure electronics are unpowered and out of harm’s way and then evacuate. Good property management means staying safe and returning ready to respond.
Effective storm preparedness methods are straightforward and well-established. If handled well, property managers can ride out the storm with at least a little peace of mind.
How To Prepare Your Commercial Property for a Winter Storm
You should gather emergency ssupplies.
Here Are Some Ways To Get Ready
As the weather gets colder in Old Fort, NC, the risk of a snow storm increases. Snow can build up on your roof, causing it to collapse. The chilly temperatures may also lead to a pipe burst in your building. Severe storms can even cut off your power and heat for hours or days at a time.
To protect your tenants and your property, you need to properly prepare for the impending storm.
First, you should figure out the severity of the threat to your property. Meteorologists will typically issue one of three warnings when a storm is heading to your area:
- Winter Weather Advisory
- Winter Storm Watch
- Winter Storm Warning
A winter weather advisory is issued when sleet, freezing rain or snow could reach your location. A winter storm watch, meanwhile, alerts you that heavier accumulations are on the way. A winter storm warning is the most severe. It signals imminent hazardous weather.
You and your tenants should remain fully informed about the nature of the snow storm. Sign up for your city's warning system, which should provide important updates. You can also listen to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's weather radio.
A minor storm can cause major damage if the cold air freezes your pipes. Use caulking and insulation to keep your entire property warm. You should also store the contact information for emergency restoration professionals. They can help fix your property if a frozen pipe does burst.
Even if you are fully prepared for the storm, an emergency can happen. You should thus ensure that everyone in your building has a supply kit. It should include a flashlight, blankets, non-perishable food and bottled water.
Before the next snow storm arrives, be sure your property is ready for the impending threat. Understand the severity of the incoming winter weather and stay updated on any emergency alerts. You should also gather emergency supplies and seal any openings to keep cold air out of your building.
Filing an Insurance Claim After a Flood
Let water damage restoration specialists perform the remediation
Here Are Some Tips For Completing This Process
After a storm, you may be tempted to rebuild your Forest City, NC house right away. However, doing so too quickly and without the proper expertise could just result in additional harm. You should thus let water damage restoration specialists perform the remediation. To pay for this service, you will likely have to file a flood insurance claim.
1. Schedule Adjuster Visit
Once you contact your insurance provider, you should schedule an appointment with an adjuster. He or she will survey the property and calculate the value of your flood claim.
2. Determine Damages
To make things easier for the adjuster, clean your home before the assessment. Take pictures of the wet areas and keep any damaged items.
3. Keep Safe
Before you enter the premises to document your loss, you should ensure it is safe to do so. Inspect the property first for any electrical or structural harm. Look for possible gas leaks or fire hazards, as well. You should also wear goggles, rubber gloves, and sturdy shoes as you tour the home.
4. Prevent Mold Issues
Once you have filed your flood claim, you should try to limit any further damage to the premises. This means preventing the mold growth that commonly occurs after floods.
Ideally, the restoration experts will dry your home quickly enough to limit the spread of mold spores. However, you can also take some steps to prevent mold problems, as well.
In the weeks and months after the flood, use your HVAC system to reduce humidity inside your home. If your house does not have air conditioning, let air circulate by turning on fans and opening windows. You should additionally utilize exhaust fans when doing laundry or cooking, as these activities could release more moisture into the air.
As long as you have proper insurance, you can file a flood claim after a storm. This should help you pay for restoration services.
3 Ways Landscaping Can Mitigate Flooding
Learn how to prevent storm and flooding damage
Landscaping is not just for looks. Strategic design can help to reduce the risk of outside flooding at your home in Marion, NC. If you live in a region with heavy precipitation, you should consider these three ways to facilitate rain drainage.
1. Adjust Grading and Add Slopes
The grade of your property should divert water away from the foundation of your home. You may want to consider adding swales to redirect water down into ditches. Line the lowest part with rocks or plants that have deep roots and high water tolerance to slow water flow. A French drain can also be a functional solution for outside flooding.
2. Garden With Flooding In Mind
In addition to growing plants in swales, you may also want to install a rain garden. The plants in this garden should have high tolerance for wet soil and should be native so that they require little maintenance beyond rainfall. Water can pool in these gardens during a rain storm and percolate down into the soil. Use heavier mulch in other garden beds to prevent wood from floating off and clogging drains. You should also be sure not to over-water beds situated near the foundation of your home.
3. Divert Rain Spouts
A functional drainage system is essential for preventing leaks and flooding. Make sure that gutters and downspouts are clear and that the outlets are diverted to prevent water from pooling next to the exterior walls of your home. You can also extend downspouts or install gutter guards.
These are three ways to use landscaping to reduce the issue of outside flooding at your home in Marion, NC. You may want to consult with local rain drainage specialists to come up with the best solutions for your property. If your home floods, you can count on the expertise of storm and water damage restoration professionals.
Why Can Storms Mess Up a Septic System?
Storms can cause major damage to your home or business.
Wet storms in Forest City, NC often lead to a variety of water damage. In the event of a sewer backup, a storm can play a huge part in unwanted black water making its way into your commercial property. To prevent major damage to your business, it is crucial to know how to identify and prevent this type of secondary storm damage.
How Septic Problems Happen During Storms
Most problems with back flowing sewage come from the ground absorbing too much moisture from rain water and blocking any further flow. Certain circumstances increase the likelihood of having a sewage problem during or after a storm:
• Increased blockage from storm debris such as fallen trees or their branches
• Pipes designed for both waste and stormwater flooded with water over the capacity
• Old or defective sewer lines connected to your business
• Trees growing roots deep into a sewage system and limiting the water flow when needed most
Once any preexisting problems are dealt with, you should consider enacting preventative maintenance.
Stopping the Problem Before It Happens
Sewer backup can be prevented, but it requires action before any storm strikes. Regular inspections of the septic system connected to your business are a good way to prevent issues. Any untreated problems with the system may become an increased likelihood of backflow. The system may seem to function normally, but it may be unable to withstand the increased water flow of a storm.
The soil in your business’ drain field, an area where sewage equipment is located, should be kept clear of unnecessary water. Any runoff pouring into the area compromises the efficiency and capacity of the system when you need it.
Treating the Aftermath
Sometimes, despite best efforts, water damage from both black water and rainwater cannot be avoided. A local storm damage restoration company can help recover your commercial building and assets damaged by a storm. With proactive actions to reduce the risk of a sewer backup and lessen this damage, you can stop your business from going under water both figuratively and literally.