Recent Storm Damage Posts

Facts about Tornado Season

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

Diamon shaped yellow sign that says "are you ready" Being prepared before storm season begins will help keep you and your family safe.

Are you Prepared in the Event of a Tornado?

We are about to enter in storm season here in North Texas. During this time of year, our main threat comes mostly from tornadoes and wind damages. Here are a couple of tips from Ready.gov about Being Prepared for a Tornado.

To begin preparing, you should consider the following:

  • Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
  • Listen to NOAA Weather Radio or to commercial radio or television newscasts for the latest information. In any emergency, always listen to the instructions given by local emergency management officials.
  • Be alert to changing weather conditions. Look for approaching storms.
  • If you see approaching storms or any of the danger signs, be prepared to take shelter immediately.
  • Have a pre-designated area such as a safe room, basement, storm cellar, or the lowest building level. If there is no basement, go to the center of a small interior room on the lowest level (closet, interior hallway) away from corners, windows, doors, and outside walls. Put as many walls as possible between you and the outside. Get under a sturdy table and use your arms to protect your head and neck.

NOAA Storm Data

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration logo which is a blue and white round circle with a bird in the middle NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)

What is the Storm Events Database?

It contains the records used to create the official NOAA Storm Data publication, documenting: 

  • The occurrence of storms and other significant weather phenomena having sufficient intensity to cause loss of life, injuries, significant property damage, and/or disruption to commerce;
  • Rare, unusual, weather phenomena that generate media attention, such as snow flurries in South Florida or the San Diego coastal area; and
  • Other significant meteorological events, such as record maximum or minimum temperatures or precipitation that occur in connection with another event.

The database currently contains data from January 1950 to November 2018, as entered by NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS). Due to changes in the data collection and processing procedures over time, there are unique periods of record available depending on the event type. NCEI has performed data reformatting and standardization of event types but has not changed any data values for locations, fatalities, injuries, damage, narratives and any other event-specific information. Please refer to the Database Details page for more information. 

You can register your email address with NCEI to receive future information regarding access system downtime, data issues, new features and general news about the Storm Events Database. 

NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information Storm Events Database:

https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/stormevents/

What to Do When the Power Goes Out

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

Power Outages are never a comfortable situation to be in especially because of the comfort level we have grown to be in. Extended power outages may impact the whole community and the economy. A power outage is when the electrical power goes out unexpectedly.

A POWER OUTAGE MAY:

  • Disrupt communications, water, and transportation.

  • Close retail businesses, grocery stores, gas stations, ATMs, banks, and other services.

  • Cause food spoilage and water contamination.

  • Prevent the use of medical devices.

PROTECT YOURSELF DURING A POWER OUTAGE:

  • Keep freezers and refrigerators closed.

  • Only use generators outdoors and away from windows.

  • Do not use a gas stove to heat your home.

  • Disconnect appliances and electronics to avoid damage from electrical surges.

  • Have alternate plans for refrigerating medicines or using power-dependent medical devices.

  • If safe, go to an alternate location for heat or cooling.

  • Check on neighbors.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A POWER OUTAGE THREATENS: 

Prepare NOW

  • Take an inventory of the items you need that rely on electricity.
  • Talk to your medical provider about a power outage plan for medical devices powered by electricity and refrigerated medicines. Find out how long medication can be stored at higher temperatures and get specific guidance for any medications that are critical for life.
  • Plan for batteries and other alternatives to meet your needs when the power goes out.
  • Sign up for local alerts and warning systems. Monitor weather reports.
  • Install carbon monoxide detectors with battery backup in central locations on every level of your home.
  • Determine whether your home phone will work in a power outage and how long battery backup will last.
  • Review the supplies that are available in case of a power outage. Have flashlights with extra batteries for every household member. Have enough nonperishable food and water.
  • Use a thermometer in the refrigerator and freezer so that you can know the temperature when the power is restored. Throw out food if the temperature is 40 degrees or higher.
  • Keep mobile phones and other electric equipment charged and gas tanks full.

For more information on making sure how to handle a power outage, make sure to visit Ready.gov

Storms and the Technology that Keeps Us Safe

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

Technology can be a vital tool in preparing for emergencies or disasters

From common technology you already use on a day-to-day basis to taking a few extra steps to prepare. Below are a few things that will help you be ready in the event of an emergency or disaster. Check out some helpful tips on how you can use it to your advantage. 

Store Information Online

There are many places to store important information securely online. Services like Google Drive and Dropbox offer a free way to store different types of files, from a Word document to images of important documents.

Follow the News

Stay informed by following agencies such as FEMA, local news channels, and local government on Twitter for the most up-to-date information in a disaster situation. You can also alert first responders if a rescue is needed through Twitter.

Mark Yourself Safe

The American Red Cross offers a Safe & Well check-in site to list yourself as safe or find family and friends in situations where communication is difficult to establish. Facebook also has a feature called Safety Check that is activated after natural disasters or a crisis. You will receive a notification from Facebook if you’re located in the affected area at that time.

Get in Touch

Make sure your contact information is up-to-date in your phone and e-mail for communication with family, friends, business contacts, and others whom you may need to get in contact with before, during, or after a disaster.

Charge Up

Keep a portable charger in your car and home in case of an emergency. You may need to recharge this from time to time, but you can also buy solar-powered chargers as well. 

Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your property or business. Put help in the palm of your hand with the Ready Plan App.  

Get in touch with SERVPRO of South Frisco/The Colony today for more information on developing an ERP for your property or business! 

What Are the Different Storm Damages?

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

Storm season brings a wide range of storm types.

Anyone of these storm types could easily cause damage to your home or business. It is important to know the different damages that a storm can cause. 

Wind Damage 

Storm damage sometimes includes severe wind damage. Roof damage in this situation may range from a missing roof due to strong winds that may loosen flashing. This can cause your roof shingles to be removed from your home or business causing leaks. Even a subtle roof leak can produce damp, moldy conditions. One of our restoration experts can help property owners address storm damage and roof damage more effectively.

Flooding Damage

Heavy rains can cause river flooding all around the Dallas/Fort Worth areas. Flooding may disrupt municipal water systems which call for experts to assess groundwater and evaluate the condition of pipes following flood damage. Our team can assist in your cleanup process after flood damage has occurred.

Lighting Damage

When a storm occurs, many times it brings the loud sounds of thunder which mean lighting is striking. Your home or business may have objects attached to the building that can attract a lightning strike that can cause a fire. According to Weather.gov a bolt of lightning can reach temperatures of roughly 30,000 kelvins (53,540 degrees Fahrenheit). Lightning strikes, or discharges of massive charges of static electricity, cause about 2% of all fires.

SERVPRO of South Frisco/The Colony has the team to help handle the restoration of both the fire and smoke damage.

Pet Preparedness

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

Pet owners, it is important to make sure you have a pet preparedness plan

Many of you probably have a disaster kit for yourself and family, so if you have a pet, it is important to make sure you have made one for your pet. This includes medical records and medication, food and water with can openers, leashes, and carriers.

Below are some tips from ASPCA on how YOU can make sure your pet is prepared for a storm.

Get a Rescue Alert Sticker

This easy-to-use sticker will let people know that pets are inside your home. Make sure it is visible to rescue workers and that it includes the types and number of pets in your home as well as the name and number of your veterinarian. 

Arrange a Safe Haven

Arrange a safe haven for your pets in the event of an evacuation. DO NOT LEAVE YOUR PETS BEHIND. Remember, if it isn’t safe for you, it isn’t safe for your pets. They may become trapped or escape and be exposed to numerous life-threatening hazards.

Choose "Designated Caregivers”

This step will take considerable time and thought. When choosing a temporary caregiver, consider someone who lives close to your residence. He or she should be someone who is generally home during the day while you are at work or has easy access to your home. 

Prepare Emergency Supplies and Traveling Kits

If you must evacuate your home in a crisis, plan for the worst-case scenario. Even if you think you may be gone for only a day, assume that you may not be allowed to return for several weeks. 

Plan Ahead in case of a potential catastrophic event

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

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
- Flashlights
- 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

Be Storm Ready for 2019

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

We can't predict what storms will hit in 2019 or what damage it will cause but you can be prepared. Ready.gov has information regarding planning ahead of a storm.

2017 was a hard year for storm season and Houston and surrounding areas felt the affects of storm season worse than most. 

Texas storm season, is June 1st to November 30th. This is 6 months out of the year, but August and September, historically, is when Texas experiences the majority of it's storms.

One of the best ways to be prepared is to stay informed. Between the news channels, weather apps and social media; it is easier than it has ever been to stay informed. Follow the advice of the local government and when evacuation orders are given, follow them.

In the event of a local disaster, your home and belongings can possibly be saved and restored. After the storm subsides and you suffered home damages, call SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony at 972-335-9900 and let us help you!

Dangerous Weather Tips

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

With the spring season comes lush green lawns and warmer sunny days. However, spring is also the prime season for severe weather such as tornadoes, thunderstorms and flash floods. There are steps that can be taken to help ensure your safety if dangerous weather is predicted in your community. 

Although tornadoes can happen anytime throughout the year, however there are 3 months when they more likely to occur: April, May and June, a transition time when unsettled weather is more likely to occur. The following are a few safety steps that can be taken to be ready if a tornado warning is issued is your area:

    • Know what your community’s warning system is.
    • Choose a safe room in your home for your family to meet if a tornado is headed your way. This room should be a basement (most Texas homes don't have basements), storm cellar, or interior room on the lowest floor and should have no windows. 
    • Prepare your lawn for strong winds by removing any damaged limbs from trees and making sure your lawn furniture, trash cans, hanging plants, etc. are secured.

Thunderstorms are also common in the spring and can produce very dangerous lightning. A few thunderstorm safety tips recommended by the American Red Cross are:

    • Where there is thunder, there is lightning! If thunder can be heard, then you are close enough to be in danger of lightning strikes. Go indoors!
    • Postpone any outdoor activities, such as sporting events and picnics until the storm passes. It is possible to get struck by lightning even if it is not raining.
    • Take shelter in a building or vehicle with windows closed and stay clear of the windows.
    • Do not shower or bathe during a thunderstorm.

Flash floods occur suddenly when water rises rapidly along a stream or low-lying area. Below are some safety steps recommended in the event of flooding:

    • Be prepared to evacuate and head for higher ground.
    • Stay away from floodwaters.
    • Do not drive on flooded streets.
    • Be especially cautious at night when it is more difficult to recognize flood danger.

While severe weather can be frightening, you can help ensure your safety and the safety of the ones you love, by being prepared and taking precautions.

Safety rules to follow during a lightening storm

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

1. 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.

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. 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.

Sewer System Failure

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

This Frisco, TX. home experienced flooding after many days of torrential rain causing sewage water to back up into their home.  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.

We will inspect damaged property and 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.

Sewage Backup or Toilet Overflow? Call Us Today – (972-335-9900)

Wind and Hail Storms can cause water intrusion into your home

3/25/2019 (Permalink)

Determining whether or your roof has sustained damage from a wind or hailstorm may be difficult. After a strong wind and/or hail storm hire a professional roofing contractor to inspect your roof to guarantee the roof has no signs of storm damage. It is important to keep your roof in top condition to avoid structural deterioration that may cause leaks. 

The wind can blow shingles off or displace shingles and leave areas on your roof susceptible for water intrusion. Strong winds can cause tree branches to fall on your home's roof or cause debris to fly and hit parts of your home.

Hail can disrupt the integrity of your shingles leaving places for water to seep into your home. Often times this type of water intrusion will travel in between the walls from the roof leak and will go unnoticed until drywall and insulation begin to show signs of water damage. 

If you sustained storm damage that caused water damage, please call us, we are always here to help!!  

Lightning Safety Tips

4/12/2018 (Permalink)

Lightning Strike.

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

"WHAT IF" Preparations!

2/22/2018 (Permalink)

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
- Flashlights
- 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

Dangers Of Extreme Cold

2/22/2018 (Permalink)

According to the National Weather Service, $2.84 million dollars in property damage was caused by extreme cold in 2015. Even scarier? Fifty three people died and three were injured due to extreme cold the same year.
It is important to be aware of the effect extremely cold temperatures can have on you. The two main conditions to be aware of are frostbite and hypothermia. Frostbite is caused when your skin is exposed to extremely cold temperatures. Physical symptoms are white or grayish-yellow skin, skin that feels unusually firm and/or numbness.
Hypothermia is when your body temperature falls to an abnormally low temperature, caused from long exposure to cold weather. Signs of hypothermia include shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling hands, memory loss, slurred speech, and drowsiness. If someone’s body temperature is below 95 F, Seek medical attention immediately. To avoid these conditions, stay indoors if possible. If not dress warm in layers and try to keep dry.

Are you Storm Ready For 2019?

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Building that was flooded during Hurricane Harvey,16 days after the water receded.

We can't predict what storms will hit in 2019 or what damage it will cause but you can be prepared. Ready.gov has information regarding planning ahead of a storm.

2017 was a hard year for storm season and Houston and surrounding areas felt the affects of storm season worse than most. 

Texas storm season, is June 1st to November 30th. This is 6 months out of the year, but August and September, historically, is when Texas experiences the majority of it's storms. One of the best ways to be prepared is to stay informed. Between the news channels, weather apps and social media; it is easier than it has ever been to stay informed. Follow the advice of the local government and when evacuation orders are given, follow them. In the event of a local disaster, your home and belongings can possibly be saved and restored. After the storm subsides and you suffered home damages, call SERVPRO® of South Frisco/The Colony at 972-335-9900 and let us help you!

Are You Hurricane Ready?

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

According to Helen Lowman with FEMA unlike most natural disasters, hurricanes rarely take us by surprise. There’s a season (June 1 – November 30) when forecasters can see hurricanes developing off the coast, hundreds of miles away, and can track them as they move closer to land. However, when they hit, high winds, heavy rainfall, storm surges, coastal and inland flooding, rip currents, and even tornadoes are all part of the hurricane package that can really pack a punch. That’s why if you live in an area where hurricanes are a threat, now is the time to prepare. The following tips can help you get prepared:

  1. Be prepared if you lose power.  If you or anyone in your household depends on medical devices that are powered by electricity, this is a priority. Talk to your medical equipment company to find out what will happen to your equipment during a power outage.
    Make sure you have extra compatible batteries for your flashlights, radios or any device that can run on battery power 
    FEMA recommends each person have at least a three-day supply of food and water, and more if possible.
    Set your freezer and refrigerator to the highest temperature so that it can stay cooler longer if you lose power.
  2. Have an emergency supply bag. Food, water, medication and batteries are just some of the basic emergency supplies you’ll want to have ready in a “Go Bag” that you can grab quickly before evacuating. Take time now to make a list of the things you would need or want to take with you if you had to leave your home quickly.
  3. Know your community’s evacuation plans. Many communities have designated “evacuation routes” and some even have evacuation zones. You will want to be familiar with these so if your local authorities issue an evacuation order, you’ll know exactly where to go.
  4. Make provisions for your pets.  Arrange a place for them to stay if possible. If you are taking them with you locate hotels that are pet friendly and bring their food along.

A Few Facts About Tornadoes

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

Spring is here and with it comes the blooming flowers, nice weather and the threat of tornadoes. Although tornadoes can happen anytime throughout the year however there are 3 months when they more likely to occur: April, May and June, a transition time when unsettled weather is more likely to occur.  

Tornadoes often appear with little warning and possess strong winds that can cause serious damage and according to The National Severe Storms Laboratory you don't have to live in Tornado Alley to experience a tornado, around 1,200 tornadoes touch down across the United States each year so preparation and understanding your risk is key.

Here are four things you need to know about tornadoes and tornado season:

1.Tornadoes can happen anywhere, any time of year.

When people think of tornadoes they often associate them occurring in Central Texas, Oklahoma and other Great Plains states commonly known as Tornado Alley but tornadoes happen outside this area every year and, in fact, they can happen all over the world anytime the conditions are right.

2.The difference between tornado watches and warnings.

Many people are not aware of the difference in a tornado watch and a tornado warning, but the difference between the two is simple:

A tornado watch is issued by the National Weather Service when weather such as thunderstorms in an area could produce tornadoes but it does not mean that a tornado will occur, it simply means you should be alert and pay attention to weather updates.

A tornado warning means that a tornado has been spotted on the ground in your area or that the storm circulation seen on Doppler radar may produce a tornado. You should seek shelter now. Even though there is a chance that the tornado will miss you or that one won't form, it is always best to be safe.

Remember if there's a tornado watch, you should keep watching the weather. If a warning is issued, that’s your warning to take shelter.

3. Never open your windows and doors or take shelter under an overpass.

While there are many good safety tips on tornadoes there are some that can put you in danger instead of making you safer. Here are two safety tips you should know:

Do not open your windows or doors during a tornado. It will not help, it just makes it easier for debris to fly through the open windows into your house.

If you are on the road during a tornado try to get inside a building as soon as possible. Do not stop and take shelter under a bridge. Taking shelter under a bridge or overpass if you're on the road is very dangerous. The winds from a tornado could blow you out from underneath or the structure could collapse on top of you.

4. Tornado season can't be forecasted.

Unlike hurricane season, there is not a forecast for the whole of tornado season, though various large-scale atmospheric patterns, such as the El Niño-La Niña cycle, can affect how a tornado season plays out. Tornado season starts roughly in April and is at its most active from May to June, but there have been many tornado outbreaks through the year so there is not a clear pattern. While some tornado seasons start out busy, they can diminish gradually and stop while some seasons have been known to be the exact opposite.

The only effective thing a forecaster can say is when and where a given storm system is likely to produce tornadoes with the next few days or hours, then watch for signs of them on radar or for spotters to see one on the ground and send a warning that generally only amounts to a few minutes. Those few minutes can be crucial so if you're under a tornado warning, pay attention.

Review Safety Tips before dangerous weather stikes

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

With the spring season comes lush green lawns and warmer sunny days. However, spring is also the prime season for severe weather such as tornadoes, thunderstorms and flash floods. There are steps that can be taken to help ensure your safety if dangerous weather is predicted in your community. 

Although tornadoes can happen anytime throughout the year, however there are 3 months when they more likely to occur: April, May and June, a transition time when unsettled weather is more likely to occur. The following are a few safety steps that can be taken to be ready if a tornado warning is issued is your area:

    • Know what your community’s warning system is.
    • Choose a safe room in your home for your family to meet if a tornado is headed your way. This room should be a basement (most Texas homes don't have basements), storm cellar, or interior room on the lowest floor and should have no windows. 
    • Prepare your lawn for strong winds by removing any damaged limbs from trees and making sure your lawn furniture, trash cans, hanging plants, etc. are secured.

Thunderstorms are also common in the spring and can produce very dangerous lightning. A few thunderstorm safety tips recommended by the American Red Cross are:

    • Where there is thunder, there is lightning! If thunder can be heard, then you are close enough to be in danger of lightning strikes. Go indoors!
    • Postpone any outdoor activities, such as sporting events and picnics until the storm passes. It is possible to get struck by lightning even if it is not raining.
    • Take shelter in a building or vehicle with windows closed and stay clear of the windows.
    • Do not shower or bathe during a thunderstorm.

Flash floods occur suddenly when water rises rapidly along a stream or low-lying area. Below are some safety steps recommended in the event of flooding:

    • Be prepared to evacuate and head for higher ground.
    • Stay away from floodwaters.
    • Do not drive on flooded streets.
    • Be especially cautious at night when it is more difficult to recognize flood danger.

While severe weather can be frightening, you can help ensure your safety and the safety of the ones you love, by being prepared and taking precautions.