Preparing for Storms
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:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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!
Practical Steps to Prepare for Rain Flooding
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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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
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 happens, there 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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
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.
When Wind and Rainstorms Flood Your Home
When heavy rains and high winds hit hard, property destruction and loss can be devastating to you as a homeowner. Structural damage to the exterior of your home is followed by interior devastation from water and winds. Storm damage is rarely isolated to just a few buildings in an area adding the challenge of finding a restoration company that can respond swiftly to your needs to an already anxiety provoking situation. SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties delivers the help you need. We are able to call upon a network of over 1,650 franchises nationwide to respond.
Storm damage can feel overwhelming, but your fear and panic will disappear when our team of professionals responds to your water, wind and flooding repair and restoration needs. Your particular situation is of paramount importance to us, and you need not worry that your repairs and restoration will take a back seat even when many in your area are struggling to recover from the same issues you face.
Call SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties. We are Here to Help!
Storms Caused This Home to Flood
When a storm or disaster strikes, SERVPRO of Lynchburg/Bedford & Campbell Counties is 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.
When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.
Able to access a network of over 1,600 Franchises strategically located throughout the United States allowing for a faster response time, SERVPRO is trained and equipped to handle the largest storms and highest flood waters.
In the aftermath of a disaster, SERVPRO is Here to Help!
When Storms or Floods hit Lynchburg, SERVPRO is ready!
Our highly trained crews are ready to respond 24/7 to storm or flood damage in Lynchburg and Campbell Counties
SERVPRO of Lynchburg / Bedford & Campbell Counties specializes in storm and flood damage restoration. Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.
Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.
Resources to Handle Floods and Storms
When storms hit Lynchburg, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.
Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 434-525-9559
How to help prevent storm damage to your home.
Be prepared when a storm hits!
Here is some great info provided by the Property and Liability Resource Bureau about preventing storm damage. Check them out at plrb.org
It is the severe thunderstorm that produces the tornado, large hail, and high wind damage to structures, as well as frequent lightning strikes that cause most property damage. All thunderstorms are dangerous. Though small in size, compared to a hurricane for example, they are extremely powerful. The National Weather Service rates approximately 10,000 thunderstorms as severe each season.
The majority of the structural damage caused in a severe thunderstorm occurs during a hailstorm. Hail damage to structures, foliage, vehicles, and agricultural crops is estimated to exceed $1-billion annually.
Hail that causes damage to structures is usually at least 1” in diameter. The larger the diameter of the hailstone, and the harder the stone, the more severe the impact on a building. The so-called baseball-sized hail causes more severe damage that the so-called golf-ball sized hail.
Vehicle damage can be caused by hail that is about .75” in diameter. Crop damage has been caused by hail as small as .25”.
Roof damage is the most frequent structural loss caused by hail. Reducing roof damage that might result from a major hailstorm is possible. It depends on the type and quality, as well as the maintenance of the structure’s roofing system. It is a fact the cedar shake roofing is more likely to be damaged than 50-pound composite roofing material. The choice of roofing is a decision made by the building’s owner, although building code requirements sometimes restrict it.
Mitigating Damage after a Storm
Close any openings made in the structure by the hail. Broken windows are the most common problem. Keep a roll of plastic sheeting that can be quickly cut to size and nailed over the opening.
Openings in the roof and in siding from hail are rare. If they occur it is best to close them as soon as possible. Keep your personal safety in mind and attempt such a closure yourself only if it can be done with little or no risk. Your insurance policy will likely cover the cost of emergency close up. Contact your agent or claims center to report the damage and seek advice on how to proceed.
The number two cause of structural damage in a severe thunderstorm is from the so-called straight-line wind. This is wind moving in one direction and not rotating, such as a tornado.
Wind is considered severe when it reaches about 60 miles per hour. Some very severe windstorms can achieve a velocity of 100 miles per hour. Both are dangerous and will cause structural damage.
A form of wind that causes damage approaching that of a strong tornado is the downburst. This is usually in a very concentrated area. It is created by air blasting out of a thunderstorm to the ground beneath the storm cell.
Minimizing and preventing wind damage to a structure is possible. Roof and siding damage are the two leading types of loss following a windstorm.
Roof damage can be reduced during the construction phase when the roof deck and the shingles or membrane are applied over the decking. A well-designed roofing system will firmly anchor the trusses and decking to the walls and foundation to keep the entire roof from lifting off the building in a strong wind. Roofing material must be properly fastened to the deck. Weakly connected shingles will lift easily from the deck.
Siding damage can be reduced at the construction phase as well. Properly fastened siding is less likely to lift off a structure in strong wind. Building codes will likely direct the minimum standards for connections. You, your architect, or your contractor may decide to exceed these minimums for a stronger and more storm resistant structure.
Falling trees and tree limbs are another significant type of damage to structures in a windstorm. Tree maintenance to remove dead limbs or identify and remove weakened trees will reduce the likelihood of the structure being damaged.
Mitigating Damage after a Storm
Close any openings made in the structure by the wind. Roof openings and broken windows are the most common problem. Keep a roll of plastic sheeting that can be quickly cut to size and nailed over the opening.
Keep your personal safety in mind and attempt such a closure yourself only if it can be done with little or no risk. Your insurance policy will likely cover the cost of emergency close up. Contact your agent or claims center to report the damage and seek advice on how to proceed.
Falling trees and tree limbs can open a structure with sudden violence. A tree on a structure is a very serious personal and structural safety issue. A tree may look as if it will not shift position. But it can shift and cause serious injury to the unwary. A fallen tree may also mask other very serious safety issues, such as downed electrical wires. The wires may still be live and the tree itself energized. Contact your agent or claims center to report the damage and seek advice on how to proceed.
A tornado is a violent rotating column of air. It originates in a severe thunderstorm as a funnel and dips to the ground. Once on the ground it is a tornado and a highly dangerous storm. About 1200 tornadoes occur annually, according to the National Weather Service. Fortunately most of them are the so-called weak tornado with winds of less than 110 miles per hour. While these will damage structures they cause few deaths. The most violent tornadoes, such as the storm that destroyed a swath of property in Oklahoma City and Moore, Oklahoma, during the 2003 season, are very rare. However they kill the most people and cause landscape clearing, catastrophic structural damage.
Please see the wind section for preventing and mitigating damage from a tornado.
Flash flooding sometimes follows rain during a severe thunderstorm. This peril is the leading killer of people during the severe thunderstorms. The fatalities occur not in structures, but usually in vehicles and after dark. Drivers under estimate the depth of water, the energy of its velocity, and how easily a vehicle can begin floating in about 24” of water.
Structural flooding typically occurs in areas that are known to be flood plains and have been mapped by the National Flood Insurance Program.