Recent Storm Damage Posts
Cleaning Flooded Buildings
commercial building flooded
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This Fact Sheet was developed to help building owners, operators, contractors, and volunteer assistance groups deal with the challenges of working in structures that were not fully cleaned and dried shortly after the flooding. Remember that when first returning to a flood-damaged building, responders should follow the initial precautions and restoration steps detailed in the FEMA Recovery Advisory, The ABC’s of Returning to Flooded Buildings (Appendix E of FEMA 549, 2005). When a flooded home has not been cleaned and dried within a few weeks of the flood event, mold contamination should be expected, and specific steps are needed to clean and restore the home. Basic cleaning and drying information is presented in the FEMA Recovery Advisory Initial Restoration for Flooded Buildings (FEMA 549, 2005), which specifies five steps for post-flood building restoration, including (1) air out, (2) move out, (3) tear out, (4) clean out, and (5) dry out. This Fact Sheet builds on the last two of these steps and assumes that the majority of the muck-out and gutting process has been completed and the home is ready for cleaning and drying. Key Issues • Floodwaters carry a variety of contaminants such as bacteria, oil, heavy metals, and pesticides. While first responders’ initial evaluations of Hurricane Sandy floodwaters indicated that exposure to such items are below current limits for safe occupancy, proper cleaning and preparation for rebuilding is critical to protect workers and occupants from both short-term hazards and long-term risk. • Other hazards are present in addition to the substances brought in with the floodwaters, especially in homes that were not dried out within a week of the flooding. Safety issues related to wet mechanical and electrical systems, exposure to lead and asbestos released from building materials, and mold growth need to be addressed. • Mold is a serious health hazard if the home is reoccupied without proper cleaning. Although a variety of products and techniques can reduce and control mold, the cleaning and drying process described in this Fact Sheet also helps to remove other floodwater contaminants. Personal Safety Flooded buildings can pose a number of health and safety risks, for both individuals who wish to maintain occupancy and those who work to repair them. Eliminating hazards is the best way to protect occupants and workers; however, until conditions can be returned to normal, anyone working in a flooded building should use appropriate personal safety equipment and take appropriate safety precautions.
Storm Damage Restoration
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Blog Summary: Surviving a significant storm is a stressful event, and dealing with the restoration is not always easy. The pros at SERVPRO of Wynwood demystify the process by outlining what to expect so you can get quick and easy storm damage restoration.
The Ultimate Guide to Storm Damage Restoration
According to the National Centers for Environmental Information, 2019 was the most active year for climate disasters, costing Americans $40 billion in property damages.
Storms can cause significant property damage, which, if left unattended, can render a home uninhabitable. Hailstorms and strong winds can make roofs unusable, while heavy rainfall can cause flooding and water damage throughout the property.
SERVPRO of Wynwood knows that storm damage repair is often a lengthy and costly process. However, they want to help homeowners make the process easier and understandable. Here’s their guide on getting your home back to normal after a storm.
Contact the Insurance Company
Most homeowner's insurance policies will cover some aspects of storm damage, so your first step is to get in touch with the insurance agency. You can help the insurance adjuster by taking photos of the damage, but most companies will also send out their own assessor to the property. They will evaluate the extent of the damage to see how much compensation you need.
Many local homeowners are shocked to find that their insurance doesn't cover hail, windstorms, or natural flooding. If you have a standard homeowner's insurance policy, it would be wise to take out additional coverage. The last thing you want is to be stuck without coverage after a bad Texas storm.
Find a Storm Damage Restoration Company
Even small incidents of hail can cause significant damage, so it's smart to call a restoration company to assess your property. Even a single missing roof tile can result in thousands of dollars of water damage if left unattended.
In many cases, your insurer will provide recommendations on a building restoration service, but that doesn't mean that owners can't do their own research. Friends and relatives can give recommendations, and online reviews are everywhere.
If you’re in a rush, SERVPRO of Wynwood can handle every aspect of restoration, from water removal and flood cleanup to a fire damage restoration service and even mold removal.
The Restoration Process
The restoration begins by making sure any existing issues don't worsen. Some repairs may take days to complete, so these will need to be patched up before the complete restoration takes place.
An unseen issue, such as an electrical problem, can pose a huge threat. For this reason, the sooner the company starts working on the property, the better.
Most storm, water, and fire restoration companies recommend that homeowners don't try to enter the property or use any electrical appliances after a storm. Amateur water cleanup attempts can make the situation even worse, and homeowners lack the gear and training to clean up a damaged home safely.
The restoration process will depend on the type of damage and the extent of the damage. For example, water restoration companies might be able to remove standing water and dry out all surfaces in as little as two days. On the other hand, fire restoration companies might need weeks to remove rubble and ensure all wiring is safe.
Any good restoration company will understand that the possibility of losing a home is stressful. They should approach clients with a kind and professional demeanor, as well as explain each step of the process.
TS Eta likely Missing Downtown Miami Area - Prepared for a Wind Event?
SERVPRO Technician assessing commercial office flood damage
TS Eta Likely to Miss Midtown Miami Area - Prepared for a Wind Event?
Tropical Storm Eta is on course to miss Midtown-Miami, FL, however, powerful winds can cause significant damage to buildings and homes. Broken windows, leaks and residential roofs damaged or torn partially or completely off.
Assessing Your Risks
While buildings are constructed to withstand strong winds, there are still steps that a building owner can do to ensure that your property does not suffer significant damage during a catastrophic wind event.
Downtown Miami including neighborhoods like Wynwood and Midtown Miami may experience high winds from Tropical Storm Eta which can cause damage to your property.
Protect Your Roof
Whether you are in a residential home or a commercial building you should conduct regular roof inspections. Examine the roof for any loose or missing materials or loose perimeter flashing. During a large wind event loose flashing can cause water to seep inside causing a potential interior flood. When inspecting a commercial rooftop make sure there is no loose equipment and all entries and doors are secure.
Inspect Areas Surrounding Building
Having lawn furniture, pool lounge chairs, planters can all become a wind hazard, so be sure to remove or secure anything that may become a projectile. Remove any loose items, or any other debris before high wind storms. You should consider replacing gravel or rock landscaping with shredded materials. Gravel landscaping materials are a major source of windborne debris and can cause significant damage as they can break unprotected windows.
Create and Test a Disaster Response Plan
Having a response plan in place will ensure that when a wind event occurs, you and your team will be prepared that the property will be protected. While many have a disaster response plan in place, it’s vital to also test the plan. Ensure that all staff is aware and educated about all wind-related procedures. You local SERVPRO of Wynwood can help you with setting up you plan with you own custom Emergency Ready Plan - ERP.
The main takeaway is to be prepared before any wind event. By following the above tips and taking steps to secure your building, you can make sure that your building will be safe and protected from damage in the event of a catastrophic wind event and potential flood repair efforts.
Storm Damage from Flooding can Affect your Commercial Office
Commercial Office building Storm damage from Flooding
Types of Damage To Expect After Storm Flooding
Commercial water damage in Wynwood, FL
Storm Damage That Can Affect Your Business
After a heavy storm in the commercial Midtown-Miami area, FL area, you may find your business has issues due to flooding which can result in water damage, mold growth, and wind damage. Fortunately, a local storm damage restoration service can help. Here’s what you may want to know about these three types of damage and how they can affect your business.
1. Water Damage
One of the first damage types associated with storms comes from water. Standing water can lead to the growth of bacteria and mold which have their own types of problems. It can also seep into the structure and lead to crumbling drywall, cracked tile, soften stone, and warp wood such as that in flooring or support beams. Fortunately, removing the water quickly may help mitigate large scale damage. A pump may be helpful in this process.
2. Mold Damage
Another type of damage comes from mold growth. Mold can grow when an environment is left damp for an extended period of time, often in areas of water damage. It roots into organic materials such as drywall and spreads by sending out spores. Mold colonies can weaken the structure around their growth.
3. Wind Damage
Another type of damage that can be seen after a storm comes from the winds. Most often people think of the damage the wind can do to a roof if there are any loose shingles. However, the wind can also pick up loose debris such as small stones, branches, or items left on the law, and blow them into the structure. Additionally, the wind can tear loose any overhanging branched from nearby trees.
After a storm, you can expect to see water damage, damage from mold growth, and damage caused by high winds. Your local restoration team should be able to assess and repair each of these damage types, and soon have the company property looking “Like it never even happened.”
Hurricane Season isn't over! Stay prepared in October!
Hurricane Delta making landfall in LA 2020. Image courtesy of NOAA. Be prepared for hurricane, storm damage and restoration with SERVPRO of Wynwood.
We here at SERVPRO of Wynwood want to remind our local businesses and communities, hurricane season is not over until November 30th.
October has been a very active month historically and the most likely month for a hurricane to make landfall in Florida.
With Winter around the corner, we at SERVPRO of Wynwood would like to remind you that we aren’t out of Hurricane season just yet. Since 1950, at least 8 out of 15 hurricanes have made landfall in the state of Florida during October.
Even though we are half-way through October, we strongly urge our fellow businesses and residents to be prepared should a hurricane hit Florida. Below is a list of what you should have in your preparedness kit:
- Water - one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
- Food - at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
- Portable Power banks (Portable chargers)
- First aid kit
- Extra batteries
- Whistle to signal for help
- Baby wipes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
- Manual can opener for food
- Local maps
- Cell phone with chargers and a backup battery
Flooding in Nebraska and Iowa
A historic flood in Nebraska and Iowa in which the water has risen to six to seven feet, has so far claimed the lives of three people and left two other people missing, who are now presumed dead. This major disaster that has broken the record of the last major flood along the Missouri River back in 2011, has caused the evacuation of over a thousand residents and left over 500 homes ruined. With two states being flooded in record numbers, and hundreds of homes and businesses closed, the local restoration companies will not be able to help. As a part of the Disaster Recovery Team, SERVPRO of Wynwood is going to go ASAP to help the local communities as much as we possibly can.
Flood Damage Tips
What to Do After Flooding
- Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
- Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
- Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
- Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
- Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
- Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
- Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
- Gather loose items from floors.
What NOT to Do After Flooding
- Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
- Don't leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
- Don't use your household vacuum to remove water.
- Don't use television or other household appliances.
- Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet.
- Keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.
Hurricane Michael Damage
Quite possibly the biggest storm to hit the Florida Panhandle in over a hundred years. "The Big One" called by many people for all of the destruction left in its path. Hurricane Michael hit the coast traveling 14 mph and accelerated to 17 while only losing a little strength while crossing from Florida to southwest Georgia. Not only was it one of the strongest storms to ever hit Florida, it is also the strongest storm to hit Georgia since 1898. With over 70 miles of destruction along U.S. Highway 98 and 34 deaths (24 in Florida, three in North Carolina, one in Georgia, and six in Virginia), 1.3 million homes and businesses lost power. Us at SERVPRO of Wynwood went up two days after the hurricane hit and have been there helping the community as best as we can over the past month.
What Not to do After a Storm
With hurricanes it is hard to be certain which path they will take. Even with Florida weather meteorologists coming close to predicting the path, the hurricane can quickly shift or turn at the drop of a dime. Because of the amount of uncertainty hurricanes bring, here are 5 things not do to when riding out a hurricane.
- Don’t tape windows - it does almost no good and it is a mess to try and take off.
- Don’t run generators indoors - the carbon monoxide the generators emit can become deadly within minutes. Also, you shouldn’t connect a generator into your home’s electric system directly, because it can affect electric lines outside and endanger your neighbors, emergency responders, and /or utility workers.
- Don’t use charcoal or gas grills indoors - the carbon monoxide and fire risks are high. The grill’s carbon monoxide can easily build up and poison anyone inside the house, including your pets.
- Don’t walk or drive in flood waters - the waters can contain snakes, alligators, downed power lines and sewage, which can all be dangerous and deadly. If you drive a vehicle in flood waters that are six inches or more, the waters can cause a car to float.
- Don’t stay after an evacuation order is given - rescuers might not come out in the height of the storm, but if they do you are putting your life and their lives in danger. Your life is not worth the same amount as your home or anything in it. A home can be replaced, your life can not.
Here is a basic list of items you should have in your Hurricane Preparedness Kit for when you need a bit of help surviving.
- An evacuation route plan.
- A first aid kit
- Flashlight and batteries
- Drinking water
- Canned foods & can opener
- Propane stove & propane
- A whistle
- Cell phone chargers
To find out more about what exactly should be in your list as well as a more detailed plan to building the kit and designing your protocols visit https://www.ready.gov/kit
If you or someone you know does need help putting your home back together after a disaster call SERVPRO of Wynwood. We have the knowledge and manpower to do the job right the first time. Reach us at 305-377-2325