Mother Nature is a force no one can reckon with. The elements are an unpredictable enemy that anyone who owns property needs to take into constant consideration. With little or no warning, a natural disaster can wipe your business off the map within the blink of an eye. It is vital to be prepared for what could potentially be in store in your future and the damage control you can have prepared for these very situations. Listed below are a few examples of how you can defend your assets against the unforeseen elements.
Risk Assessment: Where you are located can dictate your plan of action. If you are living in an area prone to flooding or located where tornadoes are common it might seem obvious in what coverage you require. A risk assessment is an important tool as it can identify the lesser probable causes of loss. Just because some events are less likely to occur than others, does not prevent the possibility of them happening. The best offense is a great defense. So be prepared.
Business Interruption Insurance: When you lose your ability to earn income do to damaged property your business interruption insurance will cover most of your loss. Some scenarios are straightforward as in water damage due to a burst pipe or structural damage caused by a fire. Natural disasters are not as specific. Secondary issues such as closed roads due to down trees can cause a loss of income and a basic interruption plan will not cover these situations. It is very important to look into supporting insurance that can be added on to cover such events.
FEMA Funding: Flooding is one of the most common side effects of natural disasters. While rain might be covered by your Business Owner's Policy, once it settles in any location it is no longer considered rain and is now defined as flood water. Flood water can only be insured by The Federal Flood Insurance Program which is administered by FEMA.
Consider all options: When insuring your commercial building it should be of highest priority to be sure all options have been considered. Be completely aware of the threat that the elements pose and the steps you can have in place to insure your property should disaster strike.
The kitchen is the heart of the home. It is a universal meeting point to converse while rummaging for a snack and is an essential part of any household. So it should be no wonder to know that nearly 41 percent of fires originate in the kitchen area. Multiple factors can play into the dangers of in home fires, many of which we overlook. We will be going through a list of steps to take when confronted with a grease fire and how to practice the proper techniques to either get the fire under control, or remove yourself to seek help.
Once a fire ignites:
- The most immediate approach you can take is to smother the flames with a cooking lid or cookie sheet. Leave on flame until it has been extinguished and the surface has cooled.
- Immediately turn off the heat source
- Baking Soda or Salt are the only two kitchen ingredients to be used when putting out a grease fire. Never use flour or any other substance to extinguish flames as they can make the fire worse.
- If all else has failed and the fire is still manageable, use a fire extinguisher to control situation.
NEVER USE WATER TO PUT OUT GREASE FIRE FLAMES. Do not attempt to move burning items outside.
If all else fails:
- If you cannot get the flames smothered it is imperative to immediately vacate the home and seek help. Kitchen fires can spread very quickly leaving you vulnerable and reduces your points of exit.
- Close all doors behind you as you leave as it can help contain the spread of the flames.
- Call 911 immediately from a safe distance.
- Never under any circumstances reenter your home while fire is in progress.
- Always have a current evacuation plan composed for your family to know which route is best to safely leave in the case of an emergency.
Home fire loss makes for a long process of recovery as well as the possibility of losing precious items that cannot be replaced. These simple steps and help you prevent disaster from striking and keep your family safe.
Insured: How To Know You Are Covered in a Flood
Your homeowners' policy is likely designed to take care of accidents that were unable to be foreseen. While it can secure against most of the things that can go wrong with your home in Frisco, TX you may need additional insurance for certain issues. Sometimes your basement flood can be covered, and sometimes it cannot.
What Isn't Covered?
There are several things your homeowners' policy probably doesn't insure:
- Flood damage
- Issues resulting from negligence or improper maintenance
- Backup of municipal sewer lines
- Repair of the flood's source
You may have to purchase additional insurance coverage for some of these issues. The cost of some of the repairs, however, such as repairs done by restoration professionals for problems caused by poor maintenance, will probably have to be paid out of pocket.
What Is Covered?
If the accident that causes the damage is sudden and unavoidable, such as a water heater that breaks and causes a basement flood, your homeowners' policy will probably protect you. If your floor or a wall needs to be replaced, your dwelling insurance can take care of it. If items are ruined in the flood, the personal property clause in the policy can help you pay for their replacement after the deductible is met.
What Additional Protection Is Needed?
If you experience frequent flooding it is a good idea to purchase flood insurance. Water backup coverage can help you when your basement is flooded by a backed-up sewer line or a clogged pipe outside your home. Talk to your insurance agent about other options that may be helpful for you to have to protect your home.
If a sudden accident causes a basement flood, a lot of the damage is probably insured by your homeowners' policy. Some special circumstances might require further coverage, though. It is important to make sure you understand your policy and have the right one in place before a problem occurs.
Sewer back up causing water damage
This Frisco, TX home experienced a water damage in their basement when the sewer backed up. They called SERVPRO of South Frisco/The Colony to handle the mitigation.
Water from sewer system backups should be considered very dangerous. The water is grossly unsanitary and may contain bacteria and viruses that could cause serious illness. Special training and equipment is necessary to safely clean this type of contamination.
SERVPRO of South Frisco/The Colony will inspect that contaminated water to determine the type of water and then plan the appropriate response to safely restore your home or business.
Sewage backup should be considered an emergency and dealt with as quickly as possible. We are the water damage restoration specialists with specific training and expertise to safely restore your home or business.
Safety Tips When Preventing House Fires
Insurance coverage is very important in protecting your home and belongings.
Know what you own- document everything in a video. Educate yourself on the policy you are buying and choose your agent based on your needs.
We also want you to consider the five most common causes of house fires:
- Cooking equipment
- Heating equipment
- Electrical distribution and lighting equipment
- Intentional fires
- Smoking materials
In this blog post we will explain how you can reduce the risk of a fire starting in your home.
- Cooking equipment.
- Be alert when cooking and don’t leave food unattended
- DO NOT throw water on a grease fire- put a lid on the pan or powdery material such as baking soda to smother the fire
- If an oven fire flares up, turn the oven off and leave the door shut until the fire extinguishes itself
- Keep clothing, pot holders, paper towels and other flammable items away from fires
- Keep working smoke detectors in the house, and have a fire extinguisher nearby just in case
- Heating equipment.
- Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater
- Maintain a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters
- Turn off space heaters and make sure any embers in the fireplace are extinguished before going to bed or leaving home
- If you must use a space heater, place it on a level, hard and nonflammable surface (such as ceramic tile floor), not on rugs or carpets or near bedding or drapes; keep children and pets away from space heaters
- Make sure your fireplace is properly cleaned and checked before the cold weather season starts.
- Keep the fire in your fireplace by using a glass or metal fire screen large enough to catch sparks and rolling logs
- Make sure wood and coal stoves, fireplaces, chimneys, and furnaces are professionally inspected and cleaned once a year
- Electrical distribution and lighting equipment.
- Don’t overload outlets or electrical cords
- Make sure you have the right cord for the job – inside cords for inside, heavy duty/outside cords for outdoor use
- Don’t leave Christmas lights, Christmas trees, or halogen lights on overnight, or when not at home
- Consider having an electrician perform an annual checkup of your home’s wiring
- Intentional fires.
- Consider what could burn
- Remove overgrown vegetation
- Remove abandoned cars
- Secure vacant homes
- Watch for kids
- Get to know your neighborhood
- Report suspicious activity
- Work with your community
- Watch local businesses
- Organize a watch program
- Install and test smoke alarms
- Call 911
- Smoking materials.
- If you smoke, consider smoking outside
- Use wide, sturdy ashtrays to catch butts and ashes
- Look for cigarette butts under furniture and between seat cushions to make sure no lit butts have fallen someplace where they can’t be seen
- This one might be obvious, but nonetheless, don’t smoke in bed, when you’re tired, or around medical oxygen
- Never leave a candle burning near flammable items
- Never leave a candle burning in a child’s room or an unoccupied room
- Make sure candles fit securing into candle holders so they won’t tip over
- Blow out any candles before leaving a room or going to sleep
You can follow every piece of advice above, and the chances are positive that you’ll avoid any type of fire in your home. However, even though the risk is greatly reduced, accidents still happen.
The bottom line is that you need to make sure you have enough coverage in the event of a major loss.
Commercial Building Restoration Services
When fires or water damage happen, they may occur at your office or business. Who do you call? Knowing the right company to help in an emergency is important to get your business back up and running as quickly as possible.
Available 24/7 to help you restore your commercial property and get you back to business. We have the expertise, equipment, and highly trained personnel to handle your commercial water, fire, or mold damage. We can also access the resources of our national network of 1,650 Franchises to handle large commercial projects and major storm events.
What You Should Do When Dealing with Fire Damage
What You Should Do When Dealing with Fire Damage in Your Home
Life has enough interruptions and bumps along the way without the unwanted disaster of a house fire. The aftermath is almost as bad but much longer-lasting. Even small fires can use the assistance of a professional cleanup/restoration company. Cooking fires that spread beyond the stove, barbecue grills that go up in smoke, and even small appliances that catch fire can cause damage to surrounding areas.
Small Fires can Pose High Risks
While you should never pour water on a grease fire, nor on an electrical one, many times that is a person's first reaction anywhere. This can cause even more damage. Cooking fires and electrical shorts are common causes of Seattle home and business fire damage. It can also create physical risks to people standing nearby. With grease fires, baking soda should be poured into the pan and any grease or oil that has caught fire outside of the cooking pan or skillet instead of water.
With electrical fires the appliance should be unplugged if it can be safely done, but not by pulling on the cord. This can cause the cord to snap, leaving the plug, without the cord, still in the outlet. The power to the area where this is happening should be shut off at the fuse box as quickly as possible to eliminate the hazard.
After the Fire is Out, It's Time to Repair the Damage
When there's been a localized fire, you should have someone assess the damages for you. This can often help with insurance documentation.
Damage can range from blackened walls and countertops to heavily burned surfaces, electrical wires being damaged and requiring replacement, to floors suffering damage so severe they must be replaced to be safe again. Having experts conduct the repairs needed can expedite insurance claims being resolved, as well.
Locally Owned Company with National Resources
We have highly trained and skilled professionals who are experienced in all sizes of fire damage clean up and restoration. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help clean up and repair fire damage, no matter how large or small.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Mold?
customers home affected by microbial growth after a slow leak occurred.
Homeowners insurance does not usually cover mold damages. Although, there are instances when mold is covered. These instances are generally when the cause of mold is due to an incident that homeowners insurance does cover. For example, if mold has grown due to accidental and sudden pipe burst or if a recent fire has caused mold, your homeowners insurance will likely cover the mold damages. On the contrary, if mold has grown due to improper maintenance practices, such as on-going humidity exposure or a continuous leak, homeowners insurance will not likely cover the damages.
If you believe you may have a mold issue give us a call today to have one of our experienced technicians come out and access your concerns!! (972)335-9900
Lightning Safety Tips
1. Postpone outdoor activities if thunderstorms are imminent. Lightning can travel 5-10 miles away from the thunderstorm and strike the ground with blue sky overhead. The storm doesn’t have to be overhead in order for you to be struck.
2. Move to a sturdy shelter or vehicle. Do not take shelter in a small shed, under isolated trees, or in a convertible-top vehicle. Stay away from tall objects such as trees or towers or poles.
3. If in your vehicle when lightning strikes – don’t touch a metal surface. You are safer in a vehicle than being outdoors.
4. Remember that utility lines or pipes can carry the electrical current underground or through a building. Avoid electrical appliances, and use telephones or computers only in an emergency.
5. If you feel your hair standing on end – get down into a baseball catcher’s position and plug your ears with your finger tips so if lightning does hit it will not blow your ear drums out. Do not lie flat!
6. 30/30 rule – if the time between lighting and thunder is 30 seconds or less, go to a safe shelter. Stay there until 30 minutes after the last rumble of thunder
Fire Extinguisher Safety
Portable fire extinguishers can be life and property saving tools when used correctly. Read the instructions on the fire extinguisher and become familiar with them before a fire breaks out.
In order to operate an extinguisher, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) suggests remembering the word PASS:
Pull the pin. Hold the nozzle pointing away from you and release the locking mechanism.
Aim low. Point the extinguisher at the base of the fire.
Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly.
Sweep the nozzle from side-to-side.
It is always a good idea to show EVERYONE in your household how to use a fire extinguisher in case of fire. You never know when or where the fire will start and having more than one person know how to use an extinguisher could save you from excessive damage to your home or save a life.