Recent Commercial Posts
3 Flood Safety Issues You Should Know About
Flooding can cause severe water damage.
One of the primary concerns for property owners during and after a flood is water damage to property. However, there are also safety issues that you should be aware of. These are three of the most common.
- Contaminated Water
Floodwaters are often contaminated with sewage, human or animal waste, chemicals, pesticides, microorganisms and other potentially harmful substances. Water that is possibly highly contaminated, such as floodwater from rivers and streams, is called black water. This type of water requires protective gear and specific training to be removed safely.
If your building requires water remediation due to flooding, contact a professional water remediation company in Sandy, UT.
- Flooded Roads
Attempting to drive through standing water can cause water damage to vehicles and create a safety hazard. While large commercial vehicles may be less likely to be washed away than passenger vehicles, there is still a risk that the driver could lose control of the vehicle or the vehicle could stall out resulting in the driver becoming stranded.
Additionally, it is difficult to know what may be under the water on a flooded road. The road could be washed away or contain hazardous objects.
- Electrocution Risk
Storms that cause flooding often also lead to downed power lines. Live wires that come in contact with standing water can create a risk of electrocution. Avoid walking through standing water if at all possible. If you or your employees must enter a flooded area, wear protective rubber boots and gloves and shut off the power to the building before entering. If you can not safely get to the main shut-off, contact the power company and ask them to shut the power off for you.
Water damage to property is not the only risk property owners face after a flood. Be aware of these three common safety hazards and how to avoid them.
5 Times When You Should Call a Restoration Company
Severe water damage to a local property.
If you have water damage in your building, you may be wondering whether you can handle the cleanup and restoration yourself or if you need to call a restoration company. These are five situations where you should contact a restoration company to handle pipe burst cleanup or other services you need.
When to Contact a Restoration Company
- You Have a Sewage Problem
Raw sewage contains contaminants that aren't safe to handle without professional safety equipment and training. If you have a sewage backup or an overflow from a toilet that contains urine or feces in your building, contact a sewer cleanup company in Sandy, UT, for assistance. Avoid entering the area until cleanup is complete. Doing so risks spreading bacteria around your building.
- You Have a Major Plumbing Problem
A broken pipe can dump a lot of water into your facility if you don't take quick action to shut off the water source. You will need to get your pipes repaired or replaced before you can turn the water back on. Contact a plumber to fix the problem quickly and correctly. Once you have stopped new water from leaking into your building, consider contacting a water restoration company to clean up the damage. Mold can begin to grow in as little as 24 to 48 hours if you don't completely dry out your property. Hiring a professional may reduce your risk of additional property damage.
- There Is a Large Amount of Water Damage
Small leaks can often be handled with a mop and bucket or a wet/dry vacuum. However, if you have a large amount of water damage, trying to handle pipe burst cleanup by yourself may not be realistic. A water restoration service can clean and dry your property fast, reducing the chance of mold or mildew growth and structural damage caused by excess moisture.
- You Have Water Damage From a Major Storm or Flood
Water damage from storms and flooding also requires professional cleanup, because the water may be contaminated. Additionally, storms often cause downed power lines and other damage that can increase the risk of electrocution when entering standing water. Restoration professionals have the equipment and training to deal with these types of risks safely. Additionally, they have the resources to clean up large amounts of water damage faster than you are likely to be able to accomplish on your own.
- Your Building Was Damaged by Fire
The water used to put out large fires may cause more structural damage than the fire itself. Restoration companies can work to restore all of the different types of damage, including fire, smoke and water, that your building may have after a fire. Additionally, technicians will sort through the contents of your building to determine which of your property may be salvaged and which needs to be discarded.
Attempting to save money by doing cleanup yourself may cost you more in additional property damage in the long run. If you need pipe burst cleanup or have another large or complicated water damage situation, contacting a professional restoration service may save you time and money.
Immediate Steps To Take After a Pipe Burst
Flooding can cause severe damage.
A frozen or broken pipe can wreak havoc on your building in Sandy, UT. Having a list of water damage tips can help you spring into action when it happens.
Cleaning Tips for a Commercial Building With Water Damage
You will probably notice the signs of a broken pipe pretty quickly. The problem can get out of control quickly, and it may be a few hours before someone is able to get to your building and do something about it. Here are some things you can do while you wait to minimize damage.
Shut Off Water
The first thing you want to do is cut off the water at the source. After all, a broken pipe can't leak if there is no water flowing to it. Shut off the water main in the building, and let everyone present know that it will be off until the problem is resolved.
Turn Off Electricity
Electricity and water don't mix. The longer the broken pipe has been leaking, the more caution needs to be taken to separate the two. Your safety protocol should include a step for turning off the power. By shutting off all breakers that release power to the affected area, you are protecting everyone in its vicinity.
Call the Professionals
A flood in your building is not something you should try to handle on your own. There are three main calls you need to make right after a pipe bursts:
- Plumber to fix the pipe
- Water damage mitigation experts to clean up the building
- Insurance provider to start the claims process
In addition to getting professional help with the problem at hand, calling the experts can also verify that you are on the right track with the progress you are making. They can give you the specific damage tips and extra steps you need to take so that you are ready for them when they arrive.
Remove Standing Water
The longer water stands in your building, the more damage it continues to create. If you can safely do so, it's a good idea to pump any excess water out. Your personal protection must come first, though. If you don't know how deep the water is or if part of the structure is damaged, it's better to wait for the mitigation team to get there.
Document the Damage
Your insurance company is going to want to know the full extent of the problem in order to review your claim. Take pictures and videos of the affected area so that you can include them in your report. Make a list of everything that may need to be replaced and how much it would cost to do so. You can always make revisions if the cleanup technicians are able to salvage some items, but this initial list gives you a solid starting place.
It's easy to feel helpless after a broken pipe floods your building, but don't despair. You may not be able to tackle the whole cleanup process by yourself, but following these damage tips can ensure that you are being proactive and protecting your building as well as you can until reinforcements arrive.
After Fire Damage, Securing the Building Is Essential
After a fire happens in your Sandy UT, business, getting back on track doesn’t happen overnight. As you wait for the adjuster to arrive and approve the fire damage and restoration company to start the work, the damage to your business may leave it in a compromised position. To avoid additional damage, it is essential to secure the property via tarping or boarding up holes and other potential entry points.
Preventing Secondary Damage Prior To Fire Cleanup
Along with the damage from the fire that may have created unwanted openings to your building, there are likely broken windows from the emergency responders putting out the flames. Leaving those exposed areas as is may become a costly endeavor.
Benefits of Board Up Services
Board-up services are a relatively simple way to keep your business secure. In most cases, the restoration company you have selected will provide these services. Ensuring that the property is properly secured while awaiting restoration offers many benefits.
- Maximize Insurance Coverage: Most insurance carriers will require roof covering and board-up services. While your business insurance will likely cover the damage from the fire, as well as the water damage sustained while putting it out, secondary damage likely won’t be covered. If the openings are not covered and heavy rain happens, it means more damage to the property. That additional damage will likely not be covered. Neglecting the property may also affect how much your insurance provider is willing to cover.
- Prevent Looting: A property with clear entry points is a prime target for thieves and vandals. That leaves any area of the property that wasn’t affected by the fire open for unwanted guests. From expensive electronics to fixtures and pipes, there are many items in a business that may be worth stealing. Securing the property minimizes the chances of someone gaining entry into the property.
- Keep Animals Out: Wild animals love to find new places to make a home. Even a small, broken window may provide enough space for something to get in. Once the property is riddled with pests, it means extra cleanup and potentially damaged furniture, walls and other items.
How Board Up Services Work
A restoration company typically offers these temporary services as part of the restoration plan. During the initial property inspection to determine restoration needs, a certified specialist will also determine areas that require temporary covering. This may include tarping over a hole in the roof or installing plywood over broken windows or other holes. For boarding up, a professional will use high-quality plywood that has been recommended for such purposes by FEMA. This wood is designed for exterior use and is a minimum of 5/8 inches thick. The affected area will be carefully measured, and then plywood pieces will be attached with screws to ensure it stays put until proper cleanup can begin.
When your business sustains fire damage, it isn't always a simple cleanup. Considering that it takes time to properly restore the property, it is essential to ensure that any openings are properly covered to ensure additional damage doesn't happen.
What Landlords Should Know About Fire Damage Responsibilities
Know more about Fire Damage Responsibilities.
As the owner of a rental property, you’re responsible for providing a place that is safe, clean, and well-maintained for current and future occupants. Part of your duties is making sure that you have insurance to cover losses associated with covered perils, such as theft, natural disasters, vandalism, and fire.
Although you never want to experience a fire at your property in Sandy, UT, having insurance is strongly recommended, and may even be required if you have a mortgage. Do you know what your obligations are for repairs and restoration in an apartment fire? Here’s what you should know.
Understanding Fire Damage Obligations
As a landlord, you’re generally responsible for providing a livable or habitable place. This includes maintenance and repair of your property’s structure and inner workings, such as roofs, foundations, plumbing, wiring, HVAC systems, etc. Typically, your property insurance would cover damages, and costs to repair and restore the rental property.
Your policy would not cover any occupant’s personal items as those are covered by renters’ insurance. Generally, this is how responsibility for damage coverage lands in most situations.
Exploring Responsibility for the Fire
Things become more complicated if one party is at fault for the fire. Let’s suppose that the first started due to a tenant overloading a circuit or leaving a candle unattended. You’d still be obligated to notify your insurance company and contact a fire restoration services provider to start the cleanup process, making your property habitable.
That said, your insurer would reach out to your tenant’s renters insurance company for compensation up to a certain liability limit. This is why you should have clear language in your lease agreement about your tenant’s obligations after an apartment fire.
If the fire was due to faulty wiring or negligence on your part, you may be obligated to also cover damages to an occupant’s possessions. Their renters’ insurance company may work with your insurer to pay for damages. You may also be sued by a tenant for these losses. Another thing to consider is that a tenant may want to break the lease or withhold rent if the home is unlivable while it’s under repair. This is why it’s incumbent upon you to familiarize yourself with local laws when it comes to your obligations related to fire damage.
Getting Back to Normal
Because you’re obligated to provide a livable space, it’s critical that you hire a professional restoration company for cleanup and repair. These pros work to restore the rental unit back to pre-fire conditions. This includes a comprehensive range of services:
- Removal of items affected by fire, smoke, soot, and water damage
- Advanced cleaning techniques
- Special drying and dehumidification approaches
- Disinfection of contaminated items
- Building repair and reconstruction
- Repair of affected items, where possible
Your cleanup professionals will come up with a plan that minimizes the time it takes to restore your property to a livable condition.
An apartment fire can be devastating to landlords and tenants alike, but the obligations are not the same. Generally, you’re responsible for restoring the property structure and its internal systems, while an occupant’s renters policy covers their possessions.
You may be liable for additional damages for a fire that resulted from poor maintenance or negligence on your part, so it’s important to stay on top of property upkeep.
Insurance Agents Choose SERVPRO for Storm Restoration Services
Choose the Best Professionals for Storm Restoration.
When a hurricane or other significant weather event hits your business in Sandy, UT, you will probably be wondering what steps to take next and how to deal with the devastation. You will need to make sure that all of your employees are safe while keeping financial loss to a minimum. There may also be the pressure to keep the doors open for business as much as possible until full operations can resume. Having some understanding of these types of situations is especially crucial in a crisis, like immediately after a severe storm.
There are several important reasons to always have a dependable storm restoration company available when you need them.
What Are the Benefits of Hiring SERVPRO's Technicians Post-Storm?
1. The Company Is a Trusted Leader in the Disaster Restoration Industry
This business has become the go-to restoration company for residences and commercial facilities, handling all varieties and sizes of disaster recovery assignments throughout its many years in operation. This company's employees have worked hard to build their reputation, and they consistently work to keep their prestige as trusted leaders in the restoration industry.
2. All Employees Are Highly Trained and Qualified
All of the technicians are thoroughly trained and qualified in fire and water cleanup to the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification criteria. They also routinely complete continuing education courses to learn new skills in storm response and the latest industry developments and practices.
3. Technicians Can Handle Disaster Restoration Jobs of All Sizes
Whatever size the disaster, SERVPRO has the technicians, expertise and industrial equipment to tackle any job. Their Disaster Recovery Team is an elite group of specialists experienced in large-scale storm restoration. They commonly work on storm, fire and flood damage in enormous capacities like hospitals, universities and municipalities. With more than 1,900 locations throughout the U.S. and Canada, they can mobilize as many technicians and resources as needed.
4. Experts Are Always Available For Quick Storm Response 24/7, 365
Disasters don't only occur during business hours, so a team of restoration specialists must be available any day at a moment's notice. SERVPRO's qualified professionals are always available to take on your problem. They will arrive prepared with everything needed for an emergency disaster response.
5. Specialists Can Help Their Clients Navigate the Insurance Claims Process
The insurance claims process can be overwhelming at times, especially when you are a business owner dealing with the stress of a major disaster. The restoration professionals are very familiar with the often complicated details of insurance claims. They are experienced in helping their clients complete the process quickly and efficiently, making it a much simpler task for the storm victims.
SERVPRO's experts are skilled in handling all of your storm restoration needs and more, including fire, wind, mold and flood damage. Before the next major storm arrives, make sure you have a disaster preparation plan in place and know who to call for your emergency recovery needs.
After all, the sooner help arrives, the sooner your business can resume its normal operations. You can keep the peace of mind you need to carry you through the procedure of returning your commercial property to its pre-storm condition.
Can I Restore My Fire-Damaged Possessions?
Learn more about restoring burned items by following our tips.
You may feel that all is lost after sustaining a fire at your commercial building in Sandy, UT. Experiencing such a detrimental disaster can leave you with little to no hope. In fact, you will probably be questioning the future of your business.
Fortunately, all is not lost; fire damage restoration professionals can often rescue, clean and restore contents you never imagined could've survived the harsh effects of the flames, soot and smoke. This is because these specialists have the industrial equipment, high-tech cleaning strategies, such as dry-cleaning, in addition to years of expertise to accomplish the job successfully.
How Are Fire-Damaged Contents Cleaned?
Many of your affected belongings can probably be restored, possibly even to their pre-fire condition. Content cleaning specialists have the expertise and equipment to salvage various types of items that have been damaged by fire, smoke, and soot. Here are the typical steps:
1. Inventorying and Packing Them
After the flames have been extinguished, restoration specialists will begin by performing the pack out process. This procedure starts with the technicians working with you to sort all of your salvageable contents from the unsalvageable. Then, the professionals inventory each item as they carefully load them into boxes to be transported for cleaning and storage.
Virtually any building contents can be included in a pack out. During a pack out, you will often see items including but not limited to:
- Home decor
- Children's toys
Even certain electronics can be sent for special cleaning. They are particularly susceptible to smoke and soot.
2. Transferring Them to a Facility for Cleaning
Once the pack out is complete, the contents are transferred to a cleaning facility. This facility has technicians with the expertise to know the best methods for restoring your possessions. They use state-of-the-art equipment designed especially for cleaning and restoring various kinds of articles.
3. Cleaning and Restoring Them Using Various Techniques
The specialists know the best methods to bring your belongings back to life. They do everything possible to return the property to its pre-fire condition. These restoration strategies include:
- Dry-cleaning (for clothing and other textiles)
- Vacuum-freeze drying (a type of document drying)
- Deodorization (including the use of activated charcoal and Archival MicroChamber paper for documents and other paper materials)
- Ultrasonic cleaning (for non-porous items)
- Sanitization (including gamma irradiation for paper-based materials)
4. Storing Them in a Climate-Controlled Area
After your belongings are cleaned, they are safely placed and stored in a temperature- and humidity-controlled location. They will remain safe in content storage until you are ready to move them back into your commercial building.
5. Returning Them to You
When your commercial property is finally restored, your clean contents will be returned to you as safely as they were packed up and moved initially. Only now, they will be in much better condition since a thorough content cleaning has been conducted.
Every day, technology is making it increasingly possible to salvage damaged contents. Hopefully, you will never have to experience the devastation of a fire. However, if you do, knowing that restoration methods like dry-cleaning and deodorization exist can offer some peace of mind.
How To Handle a Fire Sprinkler Mishap
Follow these tips if you experience problems with your Fire Sprinklers in your Sandy, UT property.
A fire sprinkler system is a vital part of your fire safety protection plan. If the sprinklers leak or malfunction, though, they can cause flooding and water damage to your commercial building in Sandy, UT. If this happens, there are a few steps you need to take immediately to handle the problem.
Turn off Water Supply To Halt Flooding
The first thing you do is turn off the source of the water. This will stop the flow from gushing through the pipes and out of the fire sprinklers. Your system may be connected to the water main, but it is likely that the water supply to the sprinklers comes from an alternative source:
- Suction tank
- Pressure tank
- Penstock or another natural reservoir
- Recycled water
It's important to understand how your system works and how the water gets to the sprinklers so that you know how to turn it off when necessary. The sooner you can stop the flow of water, the less damage it's likely to cause in the long run.
Call Water Restoration Company
Once the crisis has been stalled, contact your local certified water damage specialists. They can arrive within hours of notification to assess the damage to your building and formulate a plan for restoring it to its former state. By the end of the first visit, you should have a clear idea of how long the cleanup is likely to take and approximately how much it will cost.
Notify Your Insurance Provider
Since flooding from the sprinklers probably meets the criterion of a sudden, accidental event, chances are that your property insurance will cover the cost of repairs to your building. Make a call to start the claims process. An adjuster will survey the damage to substantiate your claim, and your agent can explain how much of the associated costs your policies will cover. Even if your provider doesn't cover the expense of repairing any damage to the sprinkler itself, it may pay the mitigation bill.
Prepare for the Mitigation Process
The technicians in charge of the repairs will likely walk you through the specifics of what needs to be done before they get started. At a minimum, you can expect that they will need to dry out the area and disinfect it. Damaged items such as furniture or electronics Any ruined materials will need to be discarded and replaced. Finally, the affected space will need to be restored so that it looks like it did before.
Prevent Future Accidents
Most fire system malfunctions can be avoided with routine maintenance. As with other pipes, you also need to guard against frozen sprinkler lines so that they don't leak. Tampering can also cause a fire sprinkler to go off and douse the area around it. Under normal circumstances and with proper care, however, accident occurrences should be sparse if not nonexistent.
A sprinkler system is a good way to protect your building from total annihilation during a fire but it can cause flooding if something goes wrong. Knowing how to handle sprinkler accidents can lower your risk of extensive damage.