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Preparing for Storms

10/8/2020 (Permalink)

Storms can bring powerful winds and dump inches of rain in a short period of time which can cause significant damage to your home. The damage can be extensive and expensive.  It is important to be to take preventative steps in order to help protect your home against any potential damage. Below are a list of precautionary steps that should be taken in the event of a storm:

  1. Monitor local weather stations, and sign up for local alerts on your phone. These bring important warnings in case the storm changes course, or if your area becomes at risk of flash flooding.
  2. Ensure that you have stocked up on enough food, water, and other essentials to last for a few days in case of a power outage or severe local flooding.
  3. Create an emergency plan for your family. Have a list of emergency phone numbers prepared. Have an exit plan in case your home becomes unsafe, and make sure that there is an assigned meeting location in case family members are separated.
  4. Clear outside gutters and drains of any leaves, sticks, or other blockage. This will ensure that water is able to flow freely, and will help to prevent water from backing up into your home.
  5. Remove any large tree branches and brush around your home. Store or secure items such as garbage cans, lawn furniture, and other items that can be blown away or damage your home during a storm.
  6. Create an inventory list of the items in your home. This will be very important for insurance purposes in the event that your home floods.
  7. Finally, remember to stay safe and dry by remaining in a secure location for the duration of the storm.

Taking precautions is the first step toward protecting your family & your home in a storm situation.  If your home has flood damage from the storm, please call SERVPRO of Lynchburg/ Bedford & Campbell Counties at (434)525-9559. It would be our privilege to serve you!

Lynchburg Business Owners: Be Emergency Ready

8/27/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Lynchburg / Bedford & Campbell Counties is a leading expert in providing Emergency Ready Profiles (ERP’s) for area businesses, churches, municipalities and non-profit organizations. 

What is an ERP?

An ERP is simply a plan of action of what to do, who to call, and emergency contacts!  It will also include where water shut off valves are, and electrical panels, plus so much more.  

Why get an ERP?

One advantage to being prepared for a disaster includes reducing business interruption.  Most people do not know that as many as 50% of businesses never recover following a disaster because a plan was not in place ahead of time.  We can provide a no cost assessment of your facility and not only provide you with a concise profile that contains critical information needed in the event of an emergency, but give you access to our “SERVPRO ONLY” mobile app which puts this information at your fingertips at all times!  

Call us today to get started!  434-525-9559

SERVPRO of Lynchburg / Bedford & Campbell Counties is here when you need us, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year

SERVPRO's Technicians are IICRC Certified

8/27/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

• Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.

• Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.

• Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.

• Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.

• Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

If you have water, fire, or storm damage to your business or home, call us 434-525-9559.

Water Damage in Lynchburg? We are IICRC Certified

8/27/2020 (Permalink)

Here at SERVPRO of Lynchburg we understand how important it is to uphold the condition of your home and the memorabilia within it that help make your house your home.  We know that above all else, the number one important factor is the safety of your family (pets included of course).  That is why we have made certain that our franchise be certified by IICRC and uphold their standards as well as continually train our crew the IICRC standards and for each member to work towards being personally certified as well.  We take our work seriously knowing that if a FireWater, or Mold Damage happened in our home or business, we would want it to be restored as efficiently, and safely as possible.  That is why when disaster strikes your home or business, you can count on SERVPRO of Lynchburg!

What is IICRC?

IICRC stands for Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification.

The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is recognized internationally as a knowledgeable industry voice and resource. It serves as an independent, nonprofit standard-setting and certification body, to set and promote high standards and ethics; and to advance communication and technical proficiency within the inspection, cleaning and restoration service industries.

The IICRC is the leading, independent, non-profit, certification and standard-setting body within the cleaning, inspection, and restoration industry. The IICRC sets and promotes high ethical standards, and advances communication, collaboration and technical expertise.

Lynchburg VA, Flash Flooding

8/26/2020 (Permalink)

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WSET) -- When dealing with flooded homes or roads remember that the water could have contained sewage.

You want to protect yourself and your family during the cleanup.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said to keep children and pets out of the affected areas until cleanup has completed.

INSIDE THE HOME:

  • Wear personal protective equipment, including rubber boots, rubber gloves, and goggles during cleanup of affected area.
  • While cleaning up areas with mold damage, wear a NIOSH-approved N-95 respirator, or one that provides even more protection.
  • Remove and discard items that cannot be washed and disinfected (such as, mattresses, carpeting, carpet padding, rugs, upholstered furniture, cosmetics, stuffed animals, baby toys, pillows, foam-rubber items, books, wall coverings, and most paper products).
  • Remove and discard drywall and insulation that has been contaminated with sewage or flood waters -- this should include material that are located a foot higher than the high water line.
  • Thoroughly clean all hard surfaces (such as flooring, concrete, molding, wood and metal furniture, countertops, appliances, sinks, and other plumbing fixtures) with hot water and laundry or dish detergent.
  • Help the drying process by using fans, air conditioning units, and dehumidifiers.
  • After completing the cleanup, wash your hands with soap and clean water.
  • Wash all clothes worn during the cleanup in hot water and detergent. These clothes should be washed separately from uncontaminated clothes and linens.
  • Wash clothes contaminated with flood or sewage water in hot water and detergent. It is recommended that a laundromat be used for washing large quantities of clothes and linens until your onsite waste-water system has been professionally inspected and serviced.
  • Seek immediate medical attention if you become injured or ill.

OUTSIDE THE HOME:

  • Wear rubber boots, rubber gloves, and goggles during cleanup of affected area.
  • Have your onsite waste-water system professionally inspected and serviced if you suspect damage.
  • Wash all clothes worn during the cleanup in hot water and detergent. These clothes should be washed separately from uncontaminated clothes and linens.
  • After completing the cleanup, wash your hands with soap and clean water. Use water that has been boiled for 1 minute (allow the water to cool before washing your hands); or you may use water that has been disinfected for personal hygiene use:
  • - When using 5-6% unscented liquid household chlorine bleach – add a little less than 1/8 teaspoon (8 drops or about 0.5 milliliters) per 1 gallon of clear water. Stir well, and let it stand for 30 minutes before using. If the water is cloudy, add a little less than ¼ teaspoon (16 drops or about 1 milliliter) per 1 gallon of water.
  • - When using 8.25% unscented liquid household chlorine bleach – add a little less than 1/8 teaspoon (6 drops or about 0.5 milliliters) per 1 gallon of clear water. Stir well, and let it stand for 30 minutes before using. If the water is cloudy, add 12 drops (or about 1 milliliter) per 1 gallon of water.
  • Seek immediate medical attention if you become injured or ill. See wound care for more information.

Flood waters and standing waters pose various risks, including infectious diseases, chemical hazards, and injuries.

Eating or drinking anything contaminated by flood water can cause diarrheal disease -- this could be caused accidentally after coming in contact with flood waters.

To protect yourself:

  • Practice good hygiene (handwashing with soap and water) after contact with flood waters.
  • Do not allow children to play in flood water areas.
  • Wash children’s hands with soap and water frequently (always before meals).
  • Do not allow children to play with toys that have been contaminated by flood water and have not been disinfected.
  • For information on disinfecting certain nonporous toys, visit CDC Healthy Water’s Cleaning and Sanitizing with Bleach section.
  • Do not bathe in water that may be contaminated with sewage or toxic chemicals. This includes rivers, streams, or lakes that are contaminated by flood water.

If you have open wounds, avoid exposure to flood waters and cover clean, open wounds with a waterproof bandage.

Flood waters can displace animals, insects, and reptiles.

Prevent Electrical Fires in Your Home

8/26/2020 (Permalink)

Electrical fires are the cause of many house fires, and can be some of the most difficult to put out due to the difficulty of identifying the source. Proper care of electrical outlets and appliances will help to prevent electrical fires.  It is very important to follow manufacturer guidelines when using electrical appliance and systems, such as the wattage guidelines given when changing light bulbs.  Be sure that you do not plug in too many electrical units into one outlet, as this could burn out the outlet and cause a fire.  Be sure that you have your wiring checked regularly by an electrician. Faulty wiring is a leading cause of electrical fires and is a common problem in many homes.  If you hear a sparking sound near a particular electrical outlet or appliance, or see smoke or smell burning after plugging a unit in, immediately unplug the object and call an electrician to check your wiring.

                Finally, if an electrical fire does occur, do NOT attempt to put the blaze out with water.  This will only make the fire worse and could shock or electrocute you.  If safe to do so, attempt to unplug the source.  Put the fire out using baking soda or a blanket to smother the flames.  If the fire is larger, a class C fire extinguisher can be used.  If the fire continues to grow, leave immediately! Do not be tempted to put out a growing fire by yourself.  Allow the firefighters to do so.

                If your home has been damaged by fire, please call SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties at (434)-525-9559.  

Faster to Lynchburg, Bedford & Campbell Counties Water Damage

8/26/2020 (Permalink)

Faster to Lynchburg, Bedford & Campbell Counties Water Damages

Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays.

Faster To Any Size Disaster

Flooding and water damage is very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more.  SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs.

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 434-525-9559

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes

  • Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
  • Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
  • Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
  • Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1 - 24:

  • Drywall begins to swell and break down.
  • Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
  • Furniture begins to swell and crack.
  • Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
  • A musty odor appears.

48 Hours to 1 Week:

  • Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
  • Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
  • Metal begins to rust and corrode.
  • Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
  • Paint begins to blister.
  • Wood flooring swells and warps.
  • Serious biohazard contamination is possible.

More Than 1 Week:

  • Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
  • Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.

SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Practical Steps to Prepare for Rain Flooding

7/21/2020 (Permalink)

Rain is unpredictable and if excessive, can cause flooding into a home or basement in just a few hours. The water can be difficult to remove and therefore stands a very high chance of causing mold. Be aware that most insurance companies will not cover flooding that results from an outside source unless your home is covered by flood insurance. If your home stands a high chance of flooding during the rainy season, you may want to consider purchasing flood insurance. Beyond this, there are several steps that you can take to guard your home against flooding.

  1. Ensure that exterior drains are clear, free of any blockage & properly working. If the drains are clogged with leaves and debris, the rainwater will not be able to drain and could flood back into the house.
  2. Check roof gutters and make sure that these are clean. Dirty gutters will not allow rainwater to run-off properly and the water will be forced to flow in other directions – including back into the house.
  3. Move items away from flood-prone areas or elevate them, especially electrical appliances or outlets. If your basement or a lower area of your residence is prone to flooding, take precautions to remove important and moveable items out of the area. For items that cannot be removed, attempt to elevate them by at least a few inches using 2x4s or alternative methods. This will prevent your items from being damaged by the rainwater.

If you have water damage from flooding, call SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties 434-525-9559.

If Your Home Floods

7/21/2020 (Permalink)

Even if you have taken the precautions listed in the blog post “Practical Steps to Prepare for Rain Flooding,” there is still a chance that your home may experience flooding. If this happensthere are several additional steps that you can take to contain the water and mitigate any damage that may occur until a SERVPRO crew can arrive to take care of it.

  1. Identify and stop the source, if safe to do so.  This will ensure that the work done by the crew is not damaged by more water coming in.
  2. Stay out of the area if the flooding becomes excessive. Do not attempt to walk through deep water as the water may become electrically charged, even if this is the only way to get to and stop the source.
  3. Do not walk barefoot through the water. It could be contaminated (especially if the flooding caused a sewage backup) and pose a serious health hazard. If you must enter the area – and only do so if the flooding is not excessive and it is safe to enter – wear high boots and gloves and avoid touching the water unless necessary.

As always, SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties is ready to help if you experience any form of flooding or water damage. Call us at (434)-525-9559 and allow us to assist you. We are Here to Help!

When Rainstorms Cause Flooding, Call SERVPRO

7/21/2020 (Permalink)

It is tragic when a flood brings devastation and water damage to your home. But rapid water removal, clean up and repairs certainly must get under way for you home to get back to normal with minimal losses.
 
Safety is a top priority. After the flood damage, evaluation of the home's safety issues must be completed before you dare to enter your home again. 
 
You do need to call your insurance agent to be certain if you are covered under your standard home owners policy or if you do possess flood insurance coverage.  An insurance adjuster will be dispatched to your property to inspect the damage and eventually offer a settlement. Ask for help in retaining a competent water damage restoration company. SERVPRO does work with many agencies. We can assess and document all water damaged items, help you with your claims and paperwork, and expedite the water removal and restoration.  Our inspection will indicate to you the severity of the water damage that your home has suffered and any potential health issues you may have to address during the process of getting the flood damage repairs done on your home. 
 
When these concerns have been addressed, and if you have been given permission to enter your home, you should also document all the flood causing water damage for insurance purposes. Be sure that you do take pictures of the flooded areas of your home and any damaged belongings, including damaged furniture. This, along with the input from SERVPRO, will help you to be fairly compensated by the insurance company. 
 
Once you have done the documentation and the adjuster had done his inspection, then the clean up starts to get under way. The home needs to be made dry and needs to be cleaned up as soon as possible to prevent any other damage from occurring. This will also lessen the likelihood of mold and mildew growth.  Contamination is a given if the flooding is the result of groundwater intrusion, whether from rain, bodies of water, or a sewage blockage. Do not attempt to clean and sanitize on your own. The potential for future illness is too great.
 
It is wise to call the professionals from SERVPRO because they can immediately begin to pump out the water and mitigate on-going water damage. And they have the skill and knowledge, along with the professional equipment required to start and complete the entire restoration process for you. 
 
After the water removal and clean up are in operation, then repairs need to be done. They could be extensive, depending on how much structural damage has occurred and the condition of the contents of your property.

If you have water damage to your home, call SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties at 434-525-9559.