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Failure To Do These Two Things May Increase Chances of Flood Damage to Your Home

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

Storm Drain with debris Make sure storm drains near your home are free of blockage. A blocked drain can cause flooding in your home.

Did you know that even if you don’t live in a flood zone, failure to perform two simple things in Mehlville, MO, may result in flooding in your home? A clogged gutter can cause storm damage to your roof, walls, windows and doors. Likewise, a clogged or blocked storm drain at the curb or sidewalk can cause water to flood on the road and onto your property.

What Steps Can Be Taken To Avoid Flood Damage From a Blocked Storm Drain?

Here are two important steps to take that may reduce your chances of damage from a blocked storm drain.

1. Discard debris properly. Always discard raked leaves, straw, twigs, etc., in trash bags or grind them for use as mulch or compost. Avoid piling them on the street for pickup by your trash service.

2. Locate your storm drains. Know where the storm drains near your home are located and periodically monitor them. If you see them covered with debris, notify your city storm water management office in Mehlville, MO, so measures can be taken to remove the debris before a storm to avoid flooding.

How Do Storm Drains Get Blocked?

Storm drains can get blocked by debris, such as twigs, leaves, pine straw, etc., when it collects on top of the grate covering the drain, preventing rainwater from draining through the debris. As a result, the water may start to pool and back up into the street and/or surrounding property. If not caught soon enough, this pooling may result in a localized flood that not only has the potential to damage the outside of your property but may damage the inside of your home as well.

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, flooding may still occur. This is when you may need the assistance of a remediation company to assess the level of damage and provide options for cleanup. Making sure that your storm drains are clear could be your first step to safeguarding your property against a storm.

Partial Losses: Making an Insurance Claim

1/6/2022 (Permalink)

Broken window of a building with smoke , sky blue and white building, Commercial fire loss in Oakville, MO.

Common Questions About Partial Losses At Your Commercial Property

If your business sustained a partial fire loss recently, you may be wondering what the insurance claims process will entail. Here are common questions you may have about partial losses at your commercial property.

What Qualifies as a Partial Loss?

Any damage that did not completely destroy your building but still caused destruction is considered a partial loss. Some examples include:

  • Damage that necessitates replacing unharmed items to restore uniformity
  • Smoke damage to carpets, walls and other surfaces
  • Items that did not burn but were still damaged by the fire

It can be hard to get your insurance company to take these kinds of damages seriously. Always insist on receiving the best assistance possible when talking with your agent or claims representative.

What Claims Process Should I Follow?

Here are the steps you need to take to properly file your partial fire loss claim:

1. File your claim early. Making sure to file your claim as quickly as possible after the damage occurs will help you in the long run. You will also have a better idea of what is and isn’t covered early on.

2. Record damages and expenses. Keep all receipts from repairs, snap photos of damage and keep documentation of any other steps in the restoration process. You may need them when you try to prove your financial and property damages.

3. Get professional help. An Oakville, MO, fire restoration service should be able to help you recover from smoke damage and other types of partial losses that may occur. A reliable company will take even small areas of destruction seriously and work out a cleanup plan that works for your business.

A fire loss of any size is a terrible thing to deal with, but a partial loss can present unique challenges that may prove to be frustrating for even the most level-headed business owner. Getting a great restoration team on your side and advocating for yourself with your commercial insurance provider are your best bets to receiving quality cleanup service and getting fairly compensated for your struggles.

Make a Resolution To Protect Your Business

12/27/2021 (Permalink)

wet carpet, water damage in office Water damage in a Bella Villa, MO office.

With the coming of a new year, it’s time to review the previous year, taking stock and making plans for change. When you are going through this process, remember to reevaluate your business insurance. It’s a good time to make sure your policy fits your needs, especially when it comes to water damage, which is one of the most common reasons businesses file insurance claims.

Evaluate Water and Flood Risks

Most business insurance policies will provide adequate financial protection from water damage, but here are some questions to ask yourself when reevaluating your risk:

  • Could I have a sewer backup?
  • Is my building in a location that is exposed to below freezing temperatures?
  • How old are my sewer pipes?
  • Is my roof maintained to reduce ice and water buildup?
  • Have I noticed any persistent bad odors?
  • Have I seen any signs of small leaks (drips, mold, etc.) that could indicate broken pipes?
  • Is my building in Bella Villa, MO, in a flood zone?

These are important questions to ask yourself before contacting your insurance agent to review your policy.

Review Common Exclusions

When talking with your agent, ask about exclusions in your insurance policy. Most of the exceptions for water damage are based on the source of the damage: such as a natural flood or a failed pipe that was not properly maintained. Ask about purchasing additional coverage if you think your building is at risk for damage that isn’t part of your standard coverage.

Make a Resolution

You work hard to manage a business. By spending a short amount of time to ask yourself key questions, you will accomplish much to assess your risk for water related damages. Your insurance agent will gain a better understanding of your needs and how to help protect your business financially.

If you do have a need for water cleanup, you can work with a single source: a commercial building restoration specialist is not like other contractors that work only on certain parts such as pipes or drywall repair. These specialists have experience helping businesses with restoration from physical damages of things like floods.

Important Facts About Category 3 Water Damage

12/11/2021 (Permalink)

Flooded water, black water enters a home Flooded home in White House, MO.

Facts to Know About Category 3 Water Damage

If your White House, MO, home has suffered flood damage, you may not know where to begin when it comes to cleanup efforts. Floods caused by torrential storms can be especially devastating and introduce what is called black water into multiple areas of your house where it can ruin floors, drywall and furniture. If you have never dealt with an event like this before, there are several important facts you may want to learn about outdoor flood water and why you will likely need professional help to clear it away.

It May Contain Sewage

Flood water that originated from an outdoor source is typically graded as category 3, which means it is contaminated with toxins. One of the most common is sewage, which can come from a variety of sources during a flood:

  • Overflowing underground sewers
  • Pet feces from backyards
  • Malfunctioning residential septic tanks

Water that is contaminated with sewage can make you ill if it comes into contact with your mucus membranes, so it is best to call in a professional flood damage and sewage cleanup service for help if black water enters your home.

It Can Cause Rapid Mold Growth

Once black water from an outdoor flood rushes into your home, the resulting moisture and increase in humidity can cause black mold to grow within 24 hours of the initial event. This type of mold is usually quite invasive and can grow on furniture and behind walls, especially in the case of drywall, as this building material absorbs water quickly. It is a good idea to have your home checked for mold once professionals drain it and to ask that a flood cut be performed to inspect interior walls.

Harmful Chemicals May Be Present

Category 3 water can contain chemicals from treated sewers, overflowing septic systems and other local sources. These chemicals may be caustic and will probably need to be removed by professionals who have the safety equipment and know-how to do the job safely.

When black water floods your White House, MO, home, the resulting damage can be disastrous. However, when you understand the dangers, you can keep yourself and your family safe until help arrives.

What to Include in Your Home Emergency Plan

12/6/2021 (Permalink)

Orange background, map and it routes. Concept of a fire escape plan Include the locations of building exits in your fire escape plan.

Be Prepared For An Emergency Situation

When preparing a fire escape plan for your Lemay, MO, home there are a few things you may want to include. These things can help your family be prepared for an emergency situation, and save valuable time in the event of an emergency.

1. Location of Fire Extinguishers

One important aspect of fire preparation is knowing where your tools are. Everyone in the family should know the locations of all fire extinguishers and how to properly use them. Most use the P.A.S.S. (press, aim, squeeze, and sweep) method. It’s also recommended to regularly check all extinguishers, and refill them as needed.

2. Exits and Meeting Places

You should also include the locations of building exits in your fire escape plan. Plan at least two routes out from each room in case one is blocked. Planning a safe meeting place outside the home is also advised. This will allow you to quickly ensure everyone is accounted for. Your meeting place should be a safe distance from the home where emergency personnel can easily find you. Many experts recommend choosing a marker everyone can remember such as a telephone pole.

3. Emergency Information

When preparing for the possibility of a home fire you may want to include emergency numbers in your plan. While 911 should be the first number called when a fire happens, you may also want to include doctors’ numbers, your insurance company, or the number for a fire damage restoration service. Having these numbers together may save time when you need to find them quickly.

With a fire escape plan in place for your home, you can help insure that your family knows where the emergency tools and exits are, how to use the fire extinguishers located in your home, where to meet safely, and what numbers to call. Having this information ready before an emergency happens can help save valuable time.

The 4 Don’ts of Water Damage

11/25/2021 (Permalink)

Two air movers placed on stairs with wet carpet floor. Water damage in Mehlville, MO.

The 4 Do's and Don'ts of Water Damage

A broken pipe creates many concerns for homeowners, and while it is instinctual to protect your belongings, that instinct can lead to injury or further damage. The list of don’ts below may help you minimize health risks while mitigating concerns over your belongings.

1. Do Not Use Electronics

While most people are preoccupied with the immediate risks to property, they may ignore the dangers of submerged outlets and water-soaked wiring. Plugging in or trying to use electrical appliances and tools may come with the threat of shock and electrocution. If you are uncertain of the safety of your home, you can seek help from a disaster specialist in the Mehlville, MO, area who can assess your property for any potential hazards.

2. Do Not Ignore Damp Fabrics

While a broken pipe can be overwhelming, you shouldn’t let it distract you from other threats to your property. Ignoring damp fabrics, for instance, can lead to mold growth, and it may also cause irreversible damage to hardwood floors and other surfaces. It is essential to remove wet materials and hang them somewhere to dry.

3. Do Not Leave Wet Dyed Items on Floors

Items like books and magazines may also stain and distress floors, countertops, and furniture. Their colorful bindings and pictures can bleed deep into porous surfaces if left to soak and dry on their own. Also, as paper is a porous substance, it can be a source of mold and mildew growth.

4. Do Not Handle Items without Protection

The buildup of water in a home can also lead to contamination, depending on the origin of the pipes. For instance, flooding from sewer lines can fill a house with black water, which is water conducive to bacteria growth. Unless you know the water classification, assume that water is contaminated and that you must wear protective clothing to handle any affected items.

A broken pipe presents many potential hazards for homeowners, and while it is easy to know what you should do, like removing excess water, it is less obvious what you should avoid. The above list of don’ts may help you avoid risks while mitigating your home repair.

4 Things To Throw Away After a Fire

11/17/2021 (Permalink)

Various canned vegetables, meats, fish and fruits Dispose of these items if they have been exposed to fire, smoke, or soot.

Items To Throw Away After a Fire

High heat can damage non-perishable and perishable food items in a home that has experienced a fire. You should avoid eating food exposed to fire suppressants, smoke, or soot. Avoid feeding pets food exposed to fire. Here are four more things to throw away after a fire.

1. Medicine

Medicine that shows signs of fire damage or that has been exposed to smoke, soot, or suppressants should be disposed of and replaced. Most medicine has a safe temperature range stated on the label and may be less effective if this range is exceeded. If these items were anywhere near a fire, it is likely that temperatures surpassed the upper limit.

2. Burned Clothing

Clothes exposed to ashes or soot may be restored, but you should throw away burned clothing. This is particularly the case for babies ' or children's clothing. Wash sooty clothes in a mixture of four to six teaspoons of tri-sodium phosphate or TSP-PF phosphate-free cleaner to one cup of bleach per gallon of water. You can also try products that contain sodium percarbonate or oxygen bleach.

3. Cosmetics

Even though you don't ingest most cosmetics, these substances are worn on the skin. Makeup or personal care items exposed to extreme heat, smoke, soot, or fire suppressants may cause irritation or increase the amount of transdermal toxins absorbed through skin.

4. Porous Food Preparation Equipment

Avoid bringing clean food or drinks into contact with contaminated surfaces such as cutting boards, plastic dishes, cups, or utensils, or baby bottle nipples. Dispose of these items if they have been exposed to fire, smoke, or soot.

Throwing away these four types of items may reduce the risk of continued exposure to fire suppressants, smoke, or soot. If you are unsure whether to throw away an item or attempt to have it restored, contact a residential fire damage restoration firm in Oakville, MO.

What You Need To Know About Commercial Storm Insurance

11/8/2021 (Permalink)

Roof leaking, roof collapsed due to storm damage Roof leak due to storm damage in Bella Villa, MO.

Storm Coverage For Your Commercial Building

Storms are common in Bella Villa, MO. If you do business in the area, you need a strategy for dealing with damage from both routine and severe storms. Purchasing comprehensive storm insurance is likely part of that strategy. Nevertheless, there are probably some important things about storm coverage you don’t know.

Coverage Extends to Storm Damage Only
Your organization’s insurance coverage protects it from unavoidable and unforeseeable damage that occurs during severe weather. If you plan to file an insurance claim, you must be sure that business damage relates to the storm. Said another way, you can’t expect to receive payment for damage to property that comes from another cause. Specifically, plan to not to file a claim for the following:

  • Normal wear and tear to business structures
  • Incidental storm damage due to underlying damage
  • Damage to business-owned vehicles
  • Coverage Is Often Comprehensive

What storm insurance covers depends on the language in the policy. Most commercial packages, however, offer comprehensive coverage. If your business sustained damage during inclement weather, you can usually expect the following areas of protection:

  • Buildings
  • Equipment
  • Inventory
  • Computer systems

Coverage Must Be Enough To Rebuild
Recovering after a storm can be challenging for any business owner. While you can usually contract with a restoration service to mitigate the immediate effects of storm damage, you must be sure your insurance coverage is extensive enough to pay all associated costs. Remember, how much coverage your company needs does not necessarily equal the market value of your business. Instead, you must work with a qualified insurer to anticipate your organization’s insurance needs.
Any savvy business owner understands the need for excellent storm insurance. Since not all coverage is the same, you must think about your organization’s needs. With a bit of effort, though, you can likely purchase the best plan for ensuring your Bella Villa, MO, business survives even the worst storm.

4 Simple Steps to Candle Safety

10/27/2021 (Permalink)

Four candles lit up Place candles at least one foot away from any items that could catch fire.

Ways To Use Candles More Safely

Candles caused up to two percent of reported home fires and four percent of direct property damage between 2011 and 2015, according to the National Fire Prevention Association. Approximately one-third of these candle fires originated in bedrooms, where the person who lights the candle may fall asleep and leave the flame burning unattended. A candle fire can imperil the lives of the person who lit the candle, all of the residents – including pets – in a home, and surrounding residences. Here are four simple steps that you can follow to use candles more safely.

1. Place candles at least one foot away from any items that could catch fire. The most common cause of candle fires is when combustible materials kept too close to candles ignite and the fire spreads.

2. Never leave children or pets unattended with burning candles. The appearance or odor of candles can attract young children or animals who may sustain injuries or start a candle fire.

3. Avoid using candles in the bedroom. If there is a risk that you may fall asleep while a candle is still burning, you should not light a candle. Most fires are started in bedrooms by lit candles and cigarettes that become unattended when the person who started the fire falls asleep.

4. Try fire-safe alternatives to candles. Choose from a variety of flameless designs that provide an illuminated look or release scents.

As many as 24 candle fires are reported every day. The number of candle fires spikes during the holiday season when this style of lightning is used for decoration or to achieve a special mood. The most candle fires are reported in December and January, with a spike as early as Halloween. If you have experienced a candle fire at your residence in White House, MO, and are interested in fire or smoke cleanup, contact a certified fire damage restoration expert.

What Happens When Fire and Water Damage Combine?

10/26/2021 (Permalink)

Firefighters putting out a fire in a big building Fire and water damage in House, MO.

What Happens When Fire and Water Damage Interact?

Fire damage and water damage often combine in commercial properties where a fire has broken out and been extinguished. Whether the water present in the property originated from a fire suppression system or a fire hose, it is important to account for both types of damage during restoration.

Fire is often the most obvious cause of damage to the inside and outside of the commercial structure. Fire may:

  • Burn or singe carpets, furniture, or fixtures
  • Cause structural issues in the walls or roof
  • Destroy windows
  • Coat surfaces in smoke and soot
  • Fill the air and electronics with corrosive smoke

The extent of damage due to water may vary depending on whether it originated with sprinklers or a fire hose. Water may:

  • Cause organic structural materials such as wood to rot
  • Support mold growth starting in as little as 48 hours
  • Ruin porous materials such as carpet or furniture

The specific types of damage caused by fire or water can compound each other and lead to even more extensive property damage. If both types of damage are present in your property, you should contact a commercial damage restoration service with the expertise and equipment necessary to address both fire damage and the presence of water. A combination of fire and water may:

  • Intensify the effects of both types of damage
  • Permanently stain or otherwise ruin delicate contents

If your commercial property in House, MO has been affected by both fire and water damage, you should contact a certified restoration company as soon as possible. Both of these types of damage get worse the longer they are allowed to linger. The combination also increases the degree of fire damage and accelerates the rate at which the damage will intensify. Restoration experts can quickly assess the extent of the damage and come up with a plan for cleaning and fully restoring the property.