Fire Risks in Your Home
The holidays lead to the highest instance of residential fires each year. But just because the holidays are over, it doesn’t mean you’re in the clear as far as the risk of home fires go. Unintentional home fires can occur at any time of year, and according to the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA), are caused by four main activities: cooking, heating, using electrical equipment, and smoking. Knowing some of the main risk factors of home fires can help you be on alert throughout the seasons, and decrease the chances of a fire occurring in your own home.
On average, fire departments in the U.S. respond to 350,000 home structure fires each year, which result in 2,620 civilian deaths, 11,220 injuries, and $6.9 billion in property damage. Cooking is the leading cause of home fires and injuries, causing more than 170,000 fires annually, but smoking is the leading cause of home fire deaths. Fires caused by smoking account for 4.5x more deaths than do fires of any other category. Similarly, space heaters account for a disproportional amount of fire-related deaths (16%), considering they cause only 4% of home fires.
Other fire facts to be aware of are that the instance home fires peak nightly between 5pm and 8pm, and peak weekly on Saturdays and Sundays. Alcohol is also often a factor in the cause and result of home fires; impairment can affect how safely heating or cooking equipment is used, and can inhibit residents from getting to safety after a fire has started.
If you ask us here at SERVPRO of Lockport, Lemont, Homer Glen, keeping an eye on the safety instructions for all cooking, heating, and electrical equipment, and never cooking or smoking while excessively tired or under the influence is a New Year’s Resolution worth keeping!
Ask The Experts: What might winter weather mean for my business?
This time of year, a winter storm is imminent. While not every storm will cripple a business, it is still necessary to be prepared. Along with frigid temperatures and snow, winter can create problems with plumbing and operations. Therefore, it is essential to make a plan for the worst-case scenario.
1. Prepare Your Building
In an effort to prepare for potential storm damage, it is wise for a business to focus on plumbing and electricity. Outside plumbing should be shut off and cleared to prevent freezing and possible burst pipes. Additionally, it may be a good idea to secure a generator if your business does not already have one. If your company does have a generator, it is a good investment to have it serviced before the winter weather sets in.
2. Plan for Ice and Snow
Any winter storm is going to bring issues of snow and ice. Being prepared for this situation means having a plow service on contract and ensuring that all walkways and driveways are cleared and salted. It is vital to do everything in your power to ensure that customers do not get hurt on the way into your business.
3. Focus on Inventory
Also, as storms have the potential to cause significant business interruption as well as property damage, it is vital to take an accurate inventory of all your assets. This inventory will be used for insurance claims if property damage results in an inventory loss. You should move stock to a secure and climate-controlled area, photographing and documenting everything. This will help streamline the process if a claim is made.
4. Make a List of Contacts
While taking inventory is necessary, it is also crucial to make a list of emergency contacts. This list should include all personnel who are essential to your operations. Additionally, you should include a disaster restoration specialist in the Western Lake County area in case of an emergency.
Winter storm season can produce significant threats to business operations. Massive snowfalls and ice storms can wreak havoc on a business, so it is essential to have a plan like the one above.
Insurance Tips For Making a Storm Claim
Here at SERVPRO of Lockport, Lemont, and Homer Glen we work closely with many Insurance companies. One in particular is American Family Insurance. Here are some tips from them on making a storm damage claim.
Act Quickly. Filing a claim with your insurance company in a timely matter is very important. Most insurance policies limit your time to file a claim, so being quick is essential. You will want to repair the damage before it has a chance to get worse.
Review your policy. Every insurance policy and claim is different. If you know what your policy covers, you will be better prepared to plead your case.
Document everything. Keep a log of the storm and the damage. Do NOT start to clean up until you have documented as much of the damage as is safe and wait to handle the big messes until a claims adjuster has assessed the situation.
Mother nature likes to shake things up and if your home didn't weather a storm as well as you'd hoped it would, keep these tips in mind to help you along the way.
If you have experienced storm damage in your home or business call SERVPRO of Lockport, Lemont, Homer Glen. We specialize in finding, assessing and repairing damage from storms!
Fire Safety For Kids
Here at SERVPRO of Lockport, Lemont, Homer Glen we care about the safety of your family. By sharing this information from the American Red Cross, we hope to shed some light on something we see too often, house fires.
A home fire is a devastating event, and one that you never count on happening. Your children are most at risk when this disaster occurs. Unfortunately, many home fires are started by children playing with dangerous household items – especially lighters and matches. Taking sensible precautions in the home and teaching your child how to escape from a fire can help your family avoid this type of heartbreak.
Prevent Your Child from Starting Fires
The U.S. Fire Administration estimates that $280 million in property is destroyed each year as the result of children playing with fire.
- Keep matches, lighters and other ignitable substances in a secured location out of your child’s reach. Only use lighters with child-resistant features.
- Invest in flameless candles. These candles contain a light bulb rather than an open flame, and take the danger out of your child knocking over a candle.
Fire Safety information from redcross.org
Is Your Home or Business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned?
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed what it means to be clean. SERVPRO of Aurora, IL wants to let you know of a new defensive cleaning program, Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned. We are offering this service because we know that getting back to business relies on getting your customers back through your doors. And that will only happen if they feel comfortable and secure in your space.
We are putting our Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned logo across America to help businesses communicate that you have committed to a higher standard of clean for your customers and employees. We’ve successfully created specialized programs for many clients. We would love to help you do the same for YOU! Call to schedule a time to discuss how. (630)862-3930
Managing a Water Loss as a Tenant or Property Owner
Handling a water loss can be extremely difficult and confusing; especially, when both a tenant and property owner are implicated. Although SERVPRO of Lockport, Lemont, and Homer Glen strives to provide clear and consistent communication to ease the stress of restoring property damage, we understand that the added variables can create further confusion. Therefore, we make all possible efforts to prevent miscommunication and protect clients, as well as ensure that water cleanup and restoration efforts are performed as effectively as possible.
Below, are notes and recommendations beneficial to homeowners and tenants regarding water losses:
- It is beneficial to address water losses immediately to ensure the safety and security of tenants, as well as maintain the structure’s integrity. Additionally, it is important to note that failing to address water damage appropriately could result in the loss of tenants in the future.
- Renter’s insurance, often, does not cover structural damage, only contents. Therefore, the homeowner is responsible for financial costs determined by damage.
- We require the homeowner’s signature to begin work; tenants cannot provide a valid signature.
Water losses are never easy, especially when cleaning and restoration efforts involve collaboration between a homeowner and tenant. At SERVPRO, we seek to provide efficient and effective work, while minimizing difficulty or confusion.
With 2020 behind us, what does that mean for SERVPRO?
SERVPRO will still be the “faster of any size disaster,” and to further that claim, SERVPRO plans to expand! It means that SERVPRO will have more manpower for those larger disasters, and more manpower means getting homes and businesses back to working order, faster. Our aim is to provide exceptional customer service for each and every customer.
After the last year we have had, SERVPRO has adapted to the changes and conquered the roadblocks ahead. Disinfecting may still be a huge thing in 2021, and SERVPRO will be there again and again to disinfect and sanitize it all. And while people are still working from home, we will still be able to provide carpet and duct cleaning for the extra traffic, as well as any mold, flood, or fire damage. Whatever lies ahead, SERVPRO is ready.
Call us at 630-862-3930
How Employers Prevent Mold
There are some important steps that employers can take to make sure that their employees are not exposed to mold. These preventative measures are some of the most important things that employers should know about mold. Following these tips can help save time, money, and the health of their employees.
- Have a reliable and certified building maintenance crew who are well-informed about mold and mold causes.
- Have all the plumbing checked regularly throughout the year.
- Check the building construction and design.
- Make sure there is proper ventilation in each area of the building.
- During summer months, open windows or run air conditioning regularly.
- Use mildew resistant paint in offices where workers spend most of their time.
- Consider replacing old carpets or wooden shelving that might have been exposed to moisture in the past.
Always let your employees know that you are doing everything possible to prevent mold from growing in your building. When workers feel like their employers understand their health risks and are taking proper precautions to keep them safe, they are less likely to file claims.
What to do if Mold is Found
If you find mold or you suspect mold is in your building, you can give SERVPRO of Aurora, IL a call. The consequences of mold are too high to not take it seriously. Primarily, the health of your employees always come first. You never want to be responsible for the health effects that your workers can contract in a moldy environment. In addition, the structure of your building will be severely compromised if mold is found and if it is not remediated on time. Lastly, legal expenses from mold litigation can be overwhelming. Do not put yourself in a tough position when it comes to mold. Call SERVPRO Aurora, IL at 630-862-3930.
4 Questions About How Smoke Damage Can Affect Your Building
4 Questions About How Smoke Damage Can Affect Your Building
Even small fires can cause a lot of damage to your business. In particular, smoke damage can ruin your items and the structure of your building. Smoke and soot can eat away at the materials in your building. This is why it is important to have them removed immediately. Acting fast can reduce the amount of smoke and soot damage your business sees. One way to do that is to hire a professional remediation company that understands smoke and can clean your items.
1. How Does Smoke Impact Your Building?
Smoke reacts differently with each material in your building. Additionally, the type and temperature of the fire can lead to different types of smoke damage. One way that all types of smoke affect your building is by hiding in tiny cracks. There, they go undetected and can lead to your business smelling like smoke. Special cleaners are necessary to get rid of these particles.
2. What Is the Cleaning Process for Smoke?
The cleaning process starts by ventilating the building so smoke particles can leave. Then, every surface will be thoroughly cleaned of soot and smoke. Special cleaners will be used that remove the particles and the odors. This must be done as soon as possible after a fire.
3. What Can Be Salvaged?
Depending on the extent of the damage, some items may not be salvageable. When looking to save certain items, several factors must be considered. Someone who understands smoke damage will be able to look at your items and tell you if they can be cleaned or not.
4. Can Upholstery Be Cleaned?
Today, some special tools and cleaners can find hidden smoke particles and remove them from porous upholstery. This is something that must be done by a professional. Attempting to clean upholstered items by yourself can cause more damage.
If you wish to reduce the amount of damage in your building after a fire, you should look into smoke cleaning. This process will remove the hidden particles and tell you if your items can be salvaged.
When it comes to companies offering clean up and restoration services in Lockport, Lemont, Homer Glen, consumers have a variety of options to choose from, so why SERVPRO? As a locally owned and operated organization, with the backing of over 1,700 franchises nationwide, SERVPRO of Lockport, Lemont, Homer Glen has the ability to respond to your property damage emergency quickly, no matter the size of the loss:
- We are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year
- Our technicians are highly trained restoration specialists, with multiple certifications from the IICRC.
- We work with a variety of insurance companies
- We offer a wide array of clean up and restoration services for both commercial and residential properties, including water, fire, mold, storm, and biohazard related damages.
- Our technicians utilize industry leading technology and equipment to provide the most efficient solution for your damages.
When disaster strikes, SERVPRO of is Here to Help and We’re Faster to Any Size Disaster. To learn more about the services we offer, please give us a call at 708-301-4200, or visit our home page for more information.