Fire Safety Tips for Children
According to the American Burn Association, children are the most susceptible to burn injuries. 24% of all burn injuries happen to children under the age of 15. At some point in time, children are going to be curious about fire, but it can be dangerous and costly.
Here are some tips to follow to keep your family safe according to the National Protection Association:
- Be sure to keep all matches and lighters out of the reach of children, preferably somewhere up high or in a locked cabinet.
- Closely supervise your children, making sure that they are away from any fire sources, including lit candles, cigarettes, fire pits, and stoves.
- Take advantage of any opportunity to teach your children about fire safety.
- Explain that fires are something to be taken seriously as they move very fast and can hurt you with contact.
- Teach young children to not touch matches or lighters, and to notify an adult immediately if found.
- Establish a clear set of rules and consequences about unsupervised and unapproved uses of fire.
- Remember, children are always watching. Make sure you set a good example by handling fire in a safe manner.
- Show your children appreciation for displaying respect and age-appropriate responsibility when it comes to fire.
If your children happen to burn themselves, cool the burn by running it under cold water for 10 to 15 minutes.
If it is a more serious burn, CALL 9-1-1.
Cleaning salvageable items after a home fire
A home fire is devastating. The most important aspect is that you made it out of your home safely and are now able to return to it. You might ask yourself if some of your belongings can be saved. SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony, experts in content cleaning, know that most smoke-damaged belongings can be cleaned. Here are some tips on how to clean your salvageable belongings.
The first thing you will have to do is get rid of the water and moisture. Not doing so will cause further damage and give mold a chance to grow. The way to do this is with a powerful water pump and press extractor. Dry wet carpets and furniture and hang clothes, draperies and pillows outside to dry. For non-damaged items, content storage is recommended so nothing can cause harm to them.
For clothes, most restoration professionals recommend dry cleaning. Don’t attempt to clean clothes, draperies and any other textile items yourself as this can cause permanent damage to them. A restoration expert can assess if the soot can be removed from your damaged items.
After you get rid of the soot, you will want to get rid of the smoke smell in textiles and throughout the home. Thoroughly vent your house and get box fans and dehumidifiers to help expedite the process. The experts at SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony use specialized procedures such as ozone treatment and thermal fogging to effectively remove the smell.
Non-porous items are generally easier to clean than porous items. Ultrasonic treatment and high-pressure water are some of the procedures SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony are utilizing. Our equipment can remove contamination from your belongings and help restore them.
Your local SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony restoration professionals have the proper expertise, tools and equipment to get the job done right and can help with dry cleaning, content cleaning and content storage.
Why do I need SERVPRO® professionals to help clean after a house/building fire
Smoke and soot are very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. At SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony, our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.
Smoke and soot facts:
- Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
- Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
- The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.
Different Types of Smoke:
There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:
Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber:
- Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.
Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood:
- Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.
Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire:
- Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.
Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.
SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony has the equipment, expertise, and experience to help properly restore your fire and smoke damaged home or business.
How to reduce your risk of a house fire?
In this blog post we will explain how you can reduce the risk of a fire starting in your home. 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.
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.
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.
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. The bottom line is that you need to make sure you have enough coverage in the event of a major loss. Insurance coverage is very important in protecting your home and belongings.
DO's and DON'TS Emergency Tips for water damage
These DO's and Don'ts Emergency Tips for water damage will assist you in taking quick proper action to help you reduce damage and increase the chances of successful restoration, before help arrives.
DO: Shut off the source of water if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source.
DO: Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock.
DO: Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
DON'T: Enter rooms with standing water where electrical shock hazard may occur.
DON'T: Enter affected areas if electrical outlets, switches, circuit breakers or electrical equipment are exposed to water. Always avoid electrical shock hazards.
DON'T: Leave books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors as this may cause staining.
Contaminated water-gray, black or sewage:
DO: Avoid all contact with sewage and items contaminated by sewage.
DO: Wash you're hands thoroughly after contact with contaminated items.
DON'T: Spread contaminated water by walking unnecessarily on damaged or wet areas.
DON'T: Turn on the HVAC system if there is a possibility of spreading contaminated air.
DON'T: Use household fans to dry the structure and spread contaminants.
DON'T: Use products for personal hygiene and cleanliness if exposed to the contaminated area.
Note: If exposed to harmful waste, OSHA recommends a post-exposure medical evaluation. Consult your local health department or physician.
In the event of water damage please call SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony. We are always here to help!
What happens to your home? Minutes to 1 week after water intrusion
Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony 972-335-9900.
Water Damage Timeline
- Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
- Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
- Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
- Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.
Hours 1 - 24:
- Drywall begins to swell and break down.
- Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
- Furniture begins to swell and crack.
- Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
- A musty odor appears.
48 Hours to 1 Week:
- Mold and mildew may grow and spread.
- Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.
- Metal begins to rust and corrode.
- Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.
- Paint begins to blister.
- Wood flooring swells and warps.
- Serious biohazard contamination is possible.
More Than 1 Week:
- Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.
- Structural safety, mold growth, and bio-hazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.
At SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony our staff and technicians are highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.
The Water restoration Process
Repairing a water damaged home involves a process starting with a thorough inspection of the damage to the of flooring, walls, and ceilings.
Step 1: Inspection – A SERVPRO® professional can best assess the extent of water damage in your home. Each inspection determines a class and category of water damage. Defining the class and category of water damage helps outline the best means to restore your property.
Classes of Water Damage
- Class 1 damage involves part of a room that has absorbed little moisture. It’s the least level of damage, represents less than ~5% of the combined floor, wall and ceiling surface the space.
- Class 2 (significant amount of water absorption and evaporation load) represents ~5%-~40% of the combined floor, wall and ceiling surface area in the space.
- Class 3 (greatest amount of water absorption and evaporation load) has absorbed up into the walls, saturated most of the area, and may have come through the ceiling. Represents more than ~40% of the combined floor, wall and ceiling surface area in the space. Class 3 damage is considered the worst.
- Class 4 (deeply held or bound water) damage requires specialty drying and longer dry times due damage done to materials such as hardwood, stone, and concrete.
Categories of Water Damage
- Category 1 involves damage from a clean water source such as toilet tanks, broken pipes supplying clean water. Category 1 water damage can degrade into Category 2 or 3 if it sits too long.
- Category 2 involves damage from “grey water,” such as washing machine or dishwasher water containing detergents. It may also involve water containing urine from toilet overflows.
- Category 3 involves completely unsanitary water that can easily cause illness, disease, or death. Category 3 water comes from sewage, river flooding, flooding from sea water, and standing water that has begun growing bacteria and other microbes. This category of water can carry trace levels of regulated or hazardous materials (e.g., pesticides, or toxic organic substances).
Step 2: Water Removal – Water extractors are used to remove water from your home. The type of equipment needed depends on the extent of the water damage. Water removal begins as soon as possible to prevent secondary damage, mold and bacteria growth.
Step 3: Drying – After all standing water and absorbent surfaces are vacuumed, drying and dehumidification begins. This step is important to clear up any remaining moisture after water removal. The drying out process typically can take 3-5 days, maybe longer for larger losses.
Step 4: Cleaning – All personal belongings need to be cleaned and sanitized to prevent unwanted mold and bacterial growth. Carpeting, clothing, and drapery are given antimicrobial treatments. Air scrubbers may also be used to remove particles and moisture from the air.
Step 5: Restoration – The biggest step in the process is restoration if materials had to be removed. Restoration involves replacing materials like drywall and insulation. Sometimes this process is as simple as installing a few panels of drywall, while serious cases could require replacing entire walls.
In the event of unknown water damage, many homeowners aren’t able to prevent mold growth. A tiny leak in the roof or pipes can persist for months before you notice it. In a situation like this, the restoration process takes even longer.
Whether your home has been flooded by broken pipes or a leaky roof, it’s important to remove all contaminated and wet materials in your home as soon as possible.
We are local here in Frisco and can respond faster to start your water restoration process. Please call SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony! We are always here to help!
Commercial Building-Water Damage NEEDS
SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony understands that using the proper equipment makes a measurable difference in reducing claims loss expense. When an emergency arises time is crucial, as well as dependence on our state-of-the-art technology and our up-to-date equipment to perform the job efficiently and effectively. SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony professionals will answer your call with fast action, exceptional equipment, highly trained and uniformed personnel.
- Extraction equipment- the most effective method of removing moisture from a structure is extraction. this is why it is critical to respond quickly to a water damage and to provide emergency mitigation services. When the equipment is extracted quickly then the environment can usually be dried much faster.
- Air moving equipment- Air movers are used in water damage restoration to enhance evaporation at the surface level,thereby reducing drying time.
Dehumidification equipment- By extracting water vapor from the air, dehumidifiers lower the relative humidity, which in turn increases the rate of evaporation. In a water damage structure, dehumidifiers pull in the moist, humid air and then discharge dry, warm air. The dry air acts like a sponge, absorbing moisture from the wet materials. The two main types of dehumidifiers used by SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony are "Refrigerant Dehumidifiers", which work similarly to air conditioners; and "Desiccant Dehumidifiers", which use chemicals, called desiccants, that readily absorb moisture from the air.
Commercial Spring Cleaning Tips
Spring time has become a staple time of year to undertake deeper cleaning projects. Although this is commonly associated with residential homes, it is just as much needed for workplaces as well as homes. The cold winter months keep everyone cooped up inside and messes start to grow. A good cleaning helps to give workers a more open and less hectic environment; additionally, a clean and welcoming place of business helps to attract customers.
Here is a list of some important areas to inspect during your spring cleaning.
Windows are one of the simplest yet crucial areas to clean. Beyond making sure you have squeaky clean windows, check to make sure they have tight seals. Small gaps in window seals can cause cool air to seep out (and warm air in the winter months), as well as allowing water to trickle in. Checking caulking and weather stripping remains intact and up to par can save you money in the long term.
This is very important for the presentation of your business. Now the grass, flowers, weeds and other plants are starting to grow, it’s important to start grooming your landscape. Don’t wait till your plants get out of control, hire someone now or take some time yourself to pull the weeds, mow the grass, and trim any trees or bushes. Additionally, this is a great time to plant some flowers if you want to spruce up your place of business.
When converting your buildings air flow system from heating to air conditioning now is the best time to quality check your system. Test your system by running it for a while to make sure it’s working properly, check any old or out of date parts that might need replacing. Clean out the ventilation system by removing dust particles and any other debris lying inside. Ventilation systems are rarely cleaned, which is why lots of building owners tend to find pest infestation or mold problems when cleaning their vents/ducts. It’s best to take these precautions while the temperature is in a transitioning period.
Along with the re-birthed trees and plants, spring also brings back hordes of pests. Ants, spiders, termites, mosquitoes, and even bed bugs can become a problem. It’s best to take preventative measures to ward off pests instead of being forced to shut the business down for a couple weeks in order to fumigate for pests. Lastly, if you are continually having the same pest problems each year, try to identify exterior factors that might be attracting those pests and any defects in your building that might be letting them in.
Simple and effective. Even if you already dust on a regular basis now’s a good time to dust those harder to reach, and often ignored, areas.
As people come in from the rainy times and wipe their feet on your carpets, dirt begins to build up. Don’t let this grime buildup in your building; buy some strong cleaning products for your floors and a top quality vacuum for carpets. In addition to constantly maintaining floors and carpets, now is a great time to hire a professional carpet and floor cleaner to give your floors a deep clean.
Reorganizing comes in two parts. The first is the organizing of all the previous years files into a consolidated area for ease of access. Best practice is to do this at the beginning of every year so that your files are neatly organized and easy to find when needed. The second is the reorganization of the office itself. Ideally, this is a continuing process year round. If the office has gotten out of hand this can be a good time of year to tidy up the office and breathe some fresh air into the workplace.
Depending on your type of business will help determine what type of spring cleaning takes priority.
Plan Ahead in case of a potential catastrophic event
PLAN AHEAD-Be prepared at your home or business with a "What IF" emergency kit in the event of a catastrophic event. Ready.gov suggests you
have enough supplies to last for at least three days. Below are some suggested items to
include in your kit:
- 3-day supply of nonperishable foods
- Water (one+ gallon per person per day)
- First-aid kit
- Prescription medication
- Sleeping bag or blankets
- Fire extinguisher
- Hygiene products
- Extra batteries
- Cell phone charger
- Change of clothes
- Matches in waterproof container
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Whistle to signal for help
- Pet supplies
- Infant formula and diapers
- Important documents such as insurance policies, IDs, and bank records in a plastic container
You can also keep a condensed emergency kit in your vehicle as well. For a more extensive list,
check out Ready.gov