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4 Sand Bag Alternatives That Will Protect Your Property From Flood Damage

5/11/2021 (Permalink)

The plumber connects parts of the plastic water pipe using fittings, hands close-up. Plastic poly tubes

Alternatives To Sand Bags

For decades, business owners have used sand bags to limit flood damage to their properties. After all, they are easy to find and cheap to purchase.
Yet there are downsides to sand bags, as well. For starters, they can be quite heavy. A single sand bag may weigh around 29 pounds. Even if you are able to get the sand bags in place, they can be even harder to remove. That is because they are considered hazardous materials and cannot just be emptied into any Bella Villa, MO, landfill.
Luckily, there are other ways to block flood water and limit your need for cleanup and restoration services after a storm. Here are some alternatives to sand bags.

1. Plastic Poly Tubes
These long tubes can be filled with dirt or sand to make them higher. They can thus easily block the water from getting past a door. However, as with sand bags, they can be quite difficult to move into place.

2. Garbage Bags
For an inexpensive approach, try filling garbage bags with sand or dirt to create your own sand bag. This can take some time to do, so these bags are best for floods for which you can prepare well in advance. Still, making your own sand bags is cost-effective and should let you put more money back into your business.

3. Transportable Fences
These fences create a barrier that surrounds your premises and blocks water from entering. You can position them where you want, and setting them up does not require too much effort.

4. Flood Dams
You can even fight water with water by purchasing inflatable flood dams. Simply fill up these dams with water and place them around the perimeter of your property. This process is fairly quick and thus works well when you and your employees need to evacuate in a hurry.
When a flood is heading for your building, you do not need to use a sand bag to protect your property. The above alternatives could be just as effective.

3 Essential Steps After a Business Fire

4/28/2021 (Permalink)

Visible damage to a commercial building following a structure fire Commercial fire damage in White House, MO.

Three Steps To Take In The Aftermath Of A Fire

A fire can be very disruptive to your office in White House, MO. Getting back to business as usual as soon as possible takes a lot of work. You may need to deal with smoke damage, replacing equipment and employee injuries. When you're dealing with disaster, it's easy to get overwhelmed. Here are three steps you need to take in the aftermath of a fire at your business.

1. Turn Off Utilities
As soon as you are safely able to, it is essential to get all utilities turned off to prevent further damage.

Gas and electricity should be turned off at the meter.
Water should also be shut off at the main valve if you are able to access it safely.
If you aren't sure how to do so, contact the utility company's emergency line for instructions.

2. Contact Your Insurance
You should notify your insurance of the incident as soon as you can. They can get a claim started right away and send an adjuster to review the site, take photos and begin to assess fire and smoke damage and other harm to the building. The adjuster can give you further instructions on what other steps you should take to ensure you protect your future insurance coverage and are reimbursed for the current damages.

3. Arrange Clean Up
Once you have the go-ahead from your insurance company, get started on cleaning up right away. Soot damage can quickly become permanent without the proper technique. You'll need to remove any irreparably damaged belongings right away and start a deep clean of every surface. If there is a lot of smoke cleaning to be done, don't hesitate to contact a professional for emergency restoration services.
The quicker you can get your business back up and running, the sooner you can financially recover. Make sure you take these essential steps to begin repairing smoke damage and get things moving in the right direction immediately.

What’s a Flood Cut and Is It Always Required?

4/15/2021 (Permalink)

drywall removal from a water damage from a roof leak Flood cut performed in Lemay, MO.

Flooding is always a disaster. Every porous item it touches is going to be damaged or destroyed – even if it’s a clean water line break. Even worse, if it’s a large flood, such as one covering multiple properties, the water should be considered dangerous. Floodwater can have a variety of hazards, including

  • Sewage
  • Chemicals
  • Dangerous floating debris

Flood damage restoration experts in Lemay, MO, will determine the degree of damage to commercial buildings and decide what can be saved. The goal is to restore everything possible and replace when required. Tearing out walls is always a last resort, which is where a flood cut may come in.

What Is a Flood Cut?

Flood water can be nasty. If there is water contamination, everything it touches needs to be replaced. To achieve this, restoration technicians will cut out the drywall that’s been impacted by it.
To save time and money, they’ll leave the untouched drywall that's higher than the flood line in place, leaving a sharp line about 12 to 18 inches above the flood line to expose everything behind the wall below the cut. This is known as a flood cut.

When Is It Necessary?

Three factors are considered when examining wall damage caused by flooding:

  • Is the water clean?
  • Did it get behind the walls?
  • Is there insulation behind the walls?

If the water has any sewage (also called blackwater) in it, they’ll have to tear out the portions below the flood cut, regardless of whether it got behind the walls. If the water is clean and did not get behind the wall, they may be able to fix the damage without a cut.
Clean water that gets behind the walls may sometimes be extracted without a flood cut. This depends largely on whether there’s insulation behind the wall. If there is, you’ll probably have to get a flood cut.
Flooding doesn’t have to be the end of your commercial property. Restoration technicians in  Lemay, MO, can often return the property to its previous condition without replacing everything, and a flood cut is often part of the process.

Taking Care of Roof Leak Damage

4/15/2021 (Permalink)

roof leak with water damage A roof leak with water damage in Mehlville, MO.

Three Things To Consider About Roof Leaks Repair

While many roofing companies claim that their roofs can withstand winds up to 90 mph, that doesn't necessarily factor in the complications brought on with a severe system. The shingles may be on tight, but hurricanes and tornadoes can pick up stray items, hurling them at your windows and roof, breaking pieces off that you would like to consider secure. Should this happen, a roof leak begins, often not visible in the building until a while later. For that reason, proprietors in Mehlville, MO, should keep an eye on the rooftop, inspecting it regularly and caring for it quickly. Here are three things to consider about roof leak repairs.

1. Minimize the Damage

When missing shingles or cracks occur, they create an opening for fluid, allowing moisture to build inside the ceiling. Over time, this can create a collapse as well as expose the building to potential mold development. For this reason, have a professional look over the roofing once the storm is over, checking not only the shingles but the siding and the flash. Avoid allowing anything to build up. If something is flagged, work to cover it up quickly, avoiding further trouble. In addition, take action inside, moving valuables to other locations.

2. Tackle any Problems

Call in a water restoration company to evaluate the roof leak section, checking to see how much humidity and liquid accrued. These experts can inspect the area for bacterial and fungus growth, determining how much of the material needs to be torn out and what is safe to keep. Then, the water needs to be removed, leaving the space as dry as possible. At this point, the team can fix the initial complication as well as sanitize everything.

3. Restore the Business

The damaged roof receives mending, and now it's time for the internal rooms to get back to normal. Anything that was removed should be replaced, with furniture and assets returned. The establishment should feel like it's ready for operation.
A roof leak can hide, developing into quite the mess. Be proactive. Look for it, call for help and begin rebuilding.

How To Create a Fire Escape Plan

3/19/2021 (Permalink)

Map of a house and escape routes Having a fire escape plan can save your life and the lives of your loved ones.

No one wants to think about the possibility that they may experience a home fire, but taking the opportunity to come up with a fire escape plan and discuss it with your family or housemates can save lives in the event of an emergency. Homeowners in Mehlville, MO, should make sure they have all the safety supplies they need and a plan in place.

Have Fire Safety Supplies

An important part of fire preparation is having all of the right safety supplies on hand and making sure all residents know where to find them:

  • Fire extinguishers
  • Smoke detectors
  • Rope ladders for upper-level windows
  • Fire blankets
  • Phones or walkie talkies
  • Flashlights

These items can help you escape a burning building faster or keep yourself safe until the fire department can assist you.

Determine Escape Routes
When creating a fire escape plan, you and the other people in your residence should discuss how you would get out of each room in the house if you were trapped there during a fire. You should consider multiple scenarios to make sure you have a plan for every possible situation. Before exiting any room during a fire, you should touch the door handle to check for heat. If the handle is hot, then the fire may be right outside of the door. In that case, keep the door closed and find an alternative exit or wait for the fire department's help.

Decide on a Meeting Place
It is possible that during a home fire, each person may have to use different escape routes to exit the building. You should determine a meeting place outside of the home. This will allow you to stay together and know who is still trapped inside so that you can tell the first responders.
You should also have a place in mind to stay while a fire damage repair service fixes the damage. Options include a friend's or family member's house or a hotel.
Having a fire escape plan can save your life and the lives of your loved ones in the event of a home fire.

Steps for Basement Flood Remediation

3/8/2021 (Permalink)

air movers and dehumidifiers placed on a basement. Flood restoration specialists have the equipment and expertise needed to fix a flooded basement.

Steps for Basement Flood Remediation

There are several things that can cause a basement flood. A broken pipe, leaking appliance, sewer backup, or heavy storm can all result in standing water in the lowest level of your home in Oakville, MO. There are several steps you should take when you discover such a problem.

1. Call the Professionals
You should never wade into standing water on your own. Flood restoration specialists have the equipment and expertise needed to fix a flooded basement. Once you make the initial call, they can arrive within hours to handle every step of the process:

  • Assessment
  • Extraction
  • Drying
  • Cleaning
  • Restoration

Take quick action to get the mitigation procedures started as soon as possible. A fast response can not only prevent secondary damage from the basement flood but also makes your home livable again in a shorter amount of time.

2. Review Your Insurance Policies
Your homeowner's insurance coverage may be able to save you a lot of the out-of-pocket expenses associated with flood remediation. Call your provider as soon as you can. The company will send an adjuster to survey the damage and come up with an estimate of how much your policy covers. Be sure to have the restoration company's detailed assessment on hand to support your claim.

3. Research Prevention
Once the flood damage in your home has been mitigated, it makes sense to look for ways to prevent future mishaps. Talk to the technicians about ways to keep water out of your basement, and invest in a reliable sump pump that can quickly get rid of any water that does enter. Ask neighbors with similar floor plans about the steps they have taken to make their basements more resistant to flooding. Your insurance agent may also be able to provide tips on upgrades you can make.
A basement flood can make a big mess, but quick remediation is the key to keeping it from getting out of hand. Act quickly to get the service and support you need.

3 Ways Liability Insurers Avoid Covering Mold Claims

2/8/2021 (Permalink)

Liability insurance form and dollars on the table. Liability insurance

3 Ways Liability Insurers Avoid Covering Mold Claims

Mold has been receiving a lot of media attention lately, and an unprecedented number of mold-related lawsuits have been filed in recent years. Insurance companies have responded to the sudden increase in mold insurance claims by finding new ways to exclude mold coverage from commercial general liability policies.

1. Exclude Mold Claims Under Existing Policy Exclusions
When mold claim numbers first started to spike, liability insurers attempted to deny coverage for mold-exposure claims under two exclusions that were standard at the time: the Pollution exclusion and the Business Risk exclusion. Denials under these exclusions were questionable at best and did not hold up well on appeal: Mold infestations don’t quite fit within the commonly understood framework of either type of exclusion.

2. Add Specific Exclusions for Mold Claims to Policy Terms
It soon became clear that the Pollution and Business Risk exclusions were not reliable grounds for denying mold insurance claims. Consequently, insurance companies began adding new endorsements to CGL policies that did specifically exclude mold coverage. A common example is the “Fungi or Bacteria Exclusion,” which specifically excludes coverage for mold remediation costs and mold exposure claims. Another example is the “Limited Fungi or Bacteria Coverage” endorsement, which specifies a separate, often very small, coverage limit for mold-related claims.

3. Offer Mold Coverage as a Separate Policy Type
In addition to adding mold-specific exclusions to their CGL policies, some insurance companies began offering pollution legal liability policies, which specifically include mold within the definition of “pollutant.” Companies that offer both PLL and CGL policies usually have policy language stating that any claim that could be covered under the PLL policies is completely excluded from coverage under the CGL policies.
Insurance companies continue to create new ways to avoid CGL coverage for mold insurance claims. White House, MO, contractors and business owners should carefully review all policy changes and discuss any concerns with their insurance providers.

5 Steps To Prepare Your Business for the Next Winter Storm

2/8/2021 (Permalink)

Hand with black plastic glove cleaning a gutter with leaves Create a plan for regularly checking and clearing out gutters.

Follow These Five Steps

If you have a business in Bella Villa, MO, winterizing your commercial property for the colder months ahead should be a top priority once temperatures start to drop. Failing to properly protect your building can have high costs. A winter storm often brings heavy winds and snowfall that can do significant damage. To reduce the chances that you will need to hire disaster restoration professionals for the next spring thaw, follow these five steps.

1. Assess the Risks
Take a look around the property. Ask yourself: What kinds of risks could happen? For example, consider employee injuries and frozen pipes. Make any repairs that might be susceptible to structural stress or other types of storm damage.

2. Assign Responsibility
Another major part of preparing for a winter storm includes assigning roles and responsibilities to qualified staff and professionals. Figure out who is going to make the parking lot safe when it ices over. Additionally, if repairs are complex, decide which company you will call for assistance.

3. Plan for Each Threat
After identifying the wintertime risks your company might face, work with employees to create an action plan for each threat. If, for example, you have concerns about ice dams forming, create a plan for regularly checking and clearing out gutters.

4. Remember To Be Comprehensive
When you protect your building against storm damage, do not forget to be thorough. There are many potential locations for damage to occur. In addition to the roof, plumbing and HVAC systems should be other top concerns.

5. Prepare Your People
Preparing your property is important, but it is only half of the equation. The other half you have to remember includes the people who run the organization. Before the snow starts coming down, make sure you train everyone on any applicable procedures and have a way to communicate updates.
Running a business somewhere with harsh winters comes with unique challenges. Planning ahead can make things easier. You can help your company prepare for the next winter storm by following these steps.

Tips for Storm Preparation

1/11/2021 (Permalink)

Word writing text Time To Plan. Business concept for Preparation of things Getting Ready Think other solutions The best way to prepare your home and family for a storm is to plan ahead

Tips for Storm Preparation

Floods and damaging storms can occur without warning. Even shallow flood water can move too rapidly to walk or drive through safely. The best way to prepare your home and family in Lemay, MO, for a storm, is to plan ahead.

1. Prepare Your Home
Do what you can to actually prepare your home. Clean out drains and gutters regularly. Consider installing a sump pump. Keep valuables in safe protected areas in higher levels of the home instead of the basement.

2. Make an Escape Plan
Map out a different way to exit your home. Escaping from a flooded building can present challenges. Remember to include children, pets, and any other household members who may need physical assistance in your escape plan. Designate a meeting place and teach everyone the phone number of a trusted relative or friend they should call if separated from the family.

3. Know the Warning Systems
Watch local television stations that track storms. Listen to local radio stations and listen for the sound of emergency broadcasts. Take every precaution to avoid getting caught in floodwater. Heed all emergency alert system warnings and evacuate or take shelter when advised to do so.

4. Have Supplies Ready
Prepare a storm evacuation kit. Include non-perishable food and water to last for several days. Stock a first aid kit with medical care essentials and any vital medications. Include cleaning and sanitizing supplies.

5. Gather Phone Numbers
Electricity may be wiped out in a storm taking away your access to research. Keep a list of essential helpful phone numbers in your emergency kit. The numbers for an electrician, a storm restoration specialist, and your insurance provider can all be helpful in tackling how to address water damage to your home.
Planning ahead for how to respond to a disaster allows you to react quickly when faced with the unexpected. Flood water moves quickly and can cause extensive devastation. It should be avoided as much as possible.

5 Steps to Take When Your Basement Floods

1/6/2021 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. A visible line is showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. Basement flood in Oakville, MO

Five Steps You Need To Take Right Away

A major storm can cause dry land to be suddenly inundated with water. When that happens, all of that water has to go somewhere. Unfortunately for many homeowners, that somewhere is often in the basement. If you have a basement flood in your Oakville, MO, home, here are the five steps you need to take right away.

1. Wait for Water To Recede
If the ground outside is still saturated and water is still pooling up or flowing over land that is usually dry, wait for the water to recede before trying to get it out of your basement. You may be surprised how much the water level in your basement goes down before you even do anything about it.

2. Get the Water Out
If your basement is still flooded, it’s important to get that water pumped out. In some areas, the fire department will take care of it for you or you can purchase your own pump to be ready anytime it happens. A wet-dry vacuum may be enough to do the job if your basement flood recedes to little more than a puddle.

3. Call Your Insurance Company
If you’ve purchased flood insurance coverage, call the company to report the loss. Even if you don’t have flood insurance, there may be coverage if they determine the water is coming from a source other than outside or underground, such as a leaking pipe or backed-up sump pump. It never hurts to call and ask.

4. Remove Wet Items
Any saturated items you can get out of the house should go right away. Leaving sopping wet carpets and furniture in place can lead to mold and other problems down the line. Be extra careful around electrical outlets and when removing any electrical equipment.

5. Dry Out the Basement
You can use dehumidifiers and fans to dry the basement out in the interim, but it’s still a good idea to have water damage restoration experts come in for a thorough cleaning and dry out.
A basement flood is certainly an ordeal, but it’s nothing you can’t get through if you simply take it step by step.