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3 Important Components of a Fire Safety Plan

3/29/2021 (Permalink)

A kitchen damaged by fire, part of the ceiling collapsed Kitchen fire damage in

Why Should I Have A Fire Safety Plan

Nearly every home in America has experienced a fire at some point in its history, and every year, over 350,000 house fires occur. Those are sobering statistics and important reasons why everyone should have a fire safety plan. These three components —detection devices (including smoke alarms and heat sensors), a fire escape plan and fire extinguishers not only can protect your property and belongings but can save your life.

1. Detection Devices
Install a battery-operated or wired-in smoke detector in every bedroom, in the halls outside sleeping areas, and on every level of your home, including the basement. Though you can certainly place a smoke detector near the kitchen, a heat detector works better in the kitchen itself, because it won't be accidentally tripped by normal cooking fumes. The same is true for garages, attics and utility rooms, where electrical fires can start quickly. In these areas, a heat alarm works faster and more effectively than a smoke alarm.

2. Fire Escape Plan
A pre-determined, rehearsed escape route is an integral part of every fire safety plan. Upper bedrooms should each have a fire ladder in case the doorways are blocked by flames and smoke, and every family member should be aware of the closest exit point of every room in the house. Choose a meeting point outside your home in Pinewood, PA, in case everyone needs to take a unique escape route. If possible, install windows that are large enough to easily climb out if needed.

3. Fire Extinguisher
Keep fire extinguishers in the kitchen, basement, near your utility or furnace room, and in the vicinity of a gas grill, if you have one. Every member of the family should know where the extinguishers are and how to use them.
Most extensive home fires are completely preventable with the simple use of a smoke alarm, but in the unfortunate event a fire does occur, have a safety plan in place. It is better to need the assistance of a fire remediation service to clean up damage to your home than a doctor to treat injured loved ones.

Conducting Workplace Fire Drills

3/29/2021 (Permalink)

People escape to fire exit door Conduct frequent drills with your employees.

Steps To Develop A Fire Preparedness Plan

Every business owner in Levittown, PA, understands the importance of conducting a periodic fire drill with their employees. The more prepared your workers are, the quicker they will respond in real emergencies.
It is important to develop a comprehensive fire preparedness plan. There are several steps to consider.

1. Choose a Safety Manager
Designate a safety manager who will take the lead on developing and implementing the plan.

2. Assemble a Team
Assign a team who is responsible for determining and addressing problem areas and concerns. The team should include people from all departments to ensure all scenarios are considered. Evaluate the risks to determine which issues should be addressed first.
The team should identify the closest exits for all employees to take during the fire drill. The team must also assign persons who will account for all employees and visitors during an evacuation.
Make sure the team is aware of the fire department's contact information, as well as a fire restoration service.

3. Create a Company Safety Policy
After the general plan has been devised, create a safety policy that sums up your company's safety goals and practices. Write more specific procedures and work instructions for relevant job functions.

4. Train Employees on Safety Protocols
Develop a training program for all employees, including new employees. Make sure workers sign a training sheet indicating they understand and will abide by the rules.

5. Conduct Fire Drills
To ensure that all employees know what to do in an emergency, conduct frequent drills at first and address any issues that surface. This includes accounting for all employees in a timely manner and ensuring that there are no blocked exits.
Continue the frequent drills until you are confident all employees are following instructions. After the initial implementation stage, you can reduce the number of events.
Make sure your employees feel comfortable in emergencies by developing a fire drill program.

3 Reasons Your Basement Is Flooding

3/15/2021 (Permalink)

wet floor, green bucket and black trash bag Basement water damage in Dunlap, PA.

3 Reasons Your Basement Is Flooding

It can be hard to remain calm when your basement in Dunlap, PA, fills with water. When flooding occurs, it is important to act quickly to mitigate any damage caused. You should contact trained water restoration specialists as soon as possible so they can assist you with the proper cleanup methods.
You may be wondering how the water made its way into your basement so that you can prevent future occurrences. Here are three common reasons your basement may have trouble staying dry.

1. Poor Foundation Drainage
The property around your home should be designed to lead water away from your foundation. Without proper drainage, rain and groundwater can easily enter your basement through cracks or holes. Especially during heavy rain or rapid snowmelt, you could see the water begin to rise very quickly. A proper foundation drainage system can help avoid a basement flood and should include:

  • Gutters with downspouts and splash blocks
  • Proper yard grading
  • Foundation drain tile

2. Failed Sump Pump
If your basement includes a sump pit with a pump, its job is to draw water from the ground and carry it away from your home. If your system fails, whether due to a power outage or to damage to the pump, you may see a lot of water flooding into your lowest level. If your power is on, many sump pumps include an alarm to alert you when the pump cannot keep up or isn't working.

3. Backed-Up Sewer
When heavy rains hit your area, it can easily lead to the sewer backing up into your home. Once the sewer system is overloaded with water, sewage flows back toward your home instead of away. The overflow will likely end up entering through a floor drain or toilet and can create quite a mess. With a rapid influx of water, you may even end up requiring pipe repair in your home as a result.
Knowing the cause can help you prevent future flooding in your home. Be sure to examine and address any issues with your drainage system and sump pump to help keep your basement dry.

Why Insurance Adjusters Like You Choose SERVPRO

2/24/2021 (Permalink)

A smiling woman and a smiling man office worker, SERVPRO logo, Phrase Ask Them Ask your insurance agent to call SERVPRO.

Why Insurance Adjusters Like You Choose SERVPRO

Your job as an insurance adjuster in Vermilion Hill, PA, keeps you busy. You have a dual responsibility — support your clients through the claims process while ensuring that the cost is reasonable for your company. Sometimes the most challenging part of your day is navigating issues with service providers. You know which vendors are great to work with and those that make you anxious when you see their name in your inbox. SERVPRO is one of the companies that strive to make your job easier to the point where you might even smile when a client chooses to work with them.

1. Electronic Claims Information
Paperwork is your life. For every insurance claim there is a huge folder of documents to keep track of. Electronic documentation is the best thing to ever happen to your industry, so working with a vendor that understands the value of organization and swift communication is ideal. SERVPRO ensures that you get a complete job file that gets updated with every pending job, photograph, and cost breakdown analysis.

2. Pretesting for Every Job
Pretesting may seem like overkill to your clients, but it's incredibly important. Without pretesting, it's difficult to provide a reliable estimate. When the job ultimately ends up being more expensive than the original quote, no one is happy, especially you, the insurance adjuster, who has the responsibility of keeping costs down. A commitment to pretesting for every job helps to keep those cost estimates reliable.

3. Vendor Professionalism
The last thing you want to do is chase a vendor for signatures or paperwork after a job is supposed to be finished. Companies with corporate backing have the bandwidth to provide you support when you need it. Because they also have national standards of professionalism, you can be reasonably sure that working with any associated franchise will be a positive experience.
SERVPRO values you, the insurance adjuster, as much as the client that they are working with directly, evidenced by their commitment to reliable communication and professionalism at every step of the project.

Concepts To Understand When Dealing With Business Interruption Insurance

2/17/2021 (Permalink)

Business interruption insurance form and red pen for signing. Sometimes, business interruption insurance can be used to cover any extra expense.

Read The Following Terms and Your Policy Before Trying To File A Claim

Many different disasters, such as severe flooding, can result in business interruption. Whether the water comes from a broken pipe or a hurricane, your company will probably need to shut down while a water remediation company fixes the damage. If you find yourself in this situation, it is important to know the various terms you will find on your business interruption insurance policy.

Business Income
Your policy will cover reduced business income that is a direct result of the flooding. Business income is calculated using:

  • Typical net income
  • Normal operating expenses

Actual Sustained Loss
This type of insurance covers your Croydon Heights, PA, business from any actual loss sustained due to flooding. This means you will only receive funds if you experience a disaster that directly contributes to your inability to run your business for enough time that you experience a loss of income. However, the amount of funds you receive is subject to the specifics of your situation.

Period of Restoration
Insurers are only responsible for your income that was lost during the period of restoration. This is the time from when the damage occurs to when the building should reasonably be operational again.

Extra Expense
Sometimes, business interruption insurance can be used to cover any extra expense. These are expenses incurred during the period of restoration that you would not have experienced if your business had been operational.

Service Interruption
Certain policies will allow their clients a service interruption extension for their period of restoration if they do not have the necessary utilities to operate their business. This extension does not require that clients name the utility providers as an added insured on their policy.
Understanding these crucial terms is critical to knowing whether your interruption insurance will cover the time you were shut down due to large water damage or another disaster. Make sure you read about these terms and your policy before trying to file a claim.

3 Common FAQs About Mold in the Workplace

2/3/2021 (Permalink)

Pieces of baseboards with mold growth A strong, musty odor may indicate hidden mold behind drywall or under carpeting.

3 Common FAQs About Mold in the Workplace

When you discover mold at your Falls Township, PA, business, you might be alarmed about the possible damage it might have already done. Mold growth can affect drywall, carpeting and your building’s HVAC system and sometimes grow out of sight until its musty odor alerts you to its presence. Calling in professional mold mitigation and removal service can help you eradicate the mold, and there are a few questions you can ask before the process begins.


1. What Causes Mold?
There are usually two main factors that cause mold to grow: high humidity and moisture. For example, a toilet overflow in the employee restroom that was not cleaned up properly might cause mold to grow behind a toilet or a leak in your HVAC system might allow warm air to seep in and create a humid environment there. Floods and leaks are usually the catalysts for mold growth.


2. Are There Different Types of Mold?
While there are several dozen different types of mold, the one that usually follows water damage is black mold, so-called because of its dark green or blackish color. This mold is prolific and can grow as soon as 24 hours after standing water is allowed to stagnate in a flooded area. You might see it on drywall, paper documents, and stored office furniture. If you recognize this type of mold, it is wise to seal off the area until professional help arrives.

3. Why Does Mold Smell?
Mold gives off an odor because as the spores attach to moist areas and begin to eat and grow, they give off a waste product called mycotoxins. This creates a musty odor, which smells like wet dirty laundry, which you might associate with fungi growth. Your mold removal and restoration team can help you pinpoint the source if you can smell the problem but cannot see it.
When mold growth affects your Falls Township, PA, business, knowing where to begin with cleanup efforts can be a challenge. However, when you know which questions to ask, you may feel more confident about the outcome.

Why Water Heaters Make Noise

1/11/2021 (Permalink)

Water heater Why water heaters make noise

Why Water Heaters Make Noise

Determining what's causing your water heater in Croyden, PA, to make noise can be difficult. Understanding the potential causes and what sounds they make can help you locate the problem more easily. Some of the sounds your heater can make are:

  • Knocking
  • Screeching
  • Popping and rumbling
  • Humming
  • Tapping


Water Hammering
Turning water on and off can cause pipes to hit the wall, making a knocking sound. This is called water hammering. A water hammer arrestor can protect your walls and stop the noise.


Partially Closed Valve
Water that is having to squeeze through a small opening can make a screeching noise. This occurs when a valve is partially closed. Checking to make sure all valves are fully opened will solve this problem.


Sediment
An older tank may develop a buildup of sediment. Sediment at the bottom of water heater can make a lot of noise when heating. This is because water trapped under the buildup is working its way to the surface. It can also make a rumbling sound as debris moves around. This can be solved with a water heater flush to clean out the buildup.


Electric Heater Element
The elements in electric heaters can produce a humming noise as they move around in the tank. Tightening the element will reduce vibrations and stop the sound.


Heat Traps
Heat traps directly the flow of water, preventing it from going the wrong direction. It is normal for them to make a tapping sound. If the sound is bothersome, you may be able to replace it with another type of valve that will be quieter.
Paying close attention to the sounds your water heater is making can be a big help in figuring out the problem. Be sure to check for water hammering, partially closed valves, sediment, a loose electric heater element, and heat traps. Once you discover what's causing the problem, stopping the noise should be easy.

What You Need to Know About Fire Damage Restoration

1/11/2021 (Permalink)

Soot on walls of a building Soot damage in Falls Township, PA building

Whether you have a small kitchen fire or watch your building in Falls Township, PA, go up in flames, fire restoration is a good way to get your business back on its feet. Before getting an estimate, you should know a little more about this procedure.

What Is Fire Restoration?

Fire restoration involves cleaning up and repairing a building after a fire. If your building sustains damage due to flames or smoke, you should consider getting an estimate and starting the process.


What Is the Remediation Process?
Every remediation process is different. However, each project will follow a similar outline. This include:

  • Providing an estimate
  • Removing water and drying out
  • Cleaning up damage
  • Deodorizing and disinfecting
  • Reconstructing


What Can Cause a Fire?
Many things can cause a fire in your business. Kitchen disasters, candles, smoking, electrical issues, lightning strikes, space heaters, problems with a fireplace, and fireworks are among the most common sources.


What Factors Into the Cost?
Many factors can affect the cost of your remediation. During your evaluation, an inspector will examine the damage to your building. The cause of the fire, size of your building, amount of time after the fire, construction materials, accessibility to the building, water damage from extinguishing, amount of mold growth, and reconstruction necessary. Each situation is unique, so that these factors may play a major or small role.


Will Your Insurance Cover It?
A commercial fire is generally covered under your insurance policy if it was a sudden, accidental fire. The best way to ensure that your entire remediation is covered is to hire a company that can work with your insurance. You can also contact your insurance company directly.
Even a small amount of fire damage can require a professional remediation company. These companies can respond to your disaster and perform the remediation process. They will also be sure to consider many factors and give you a fair price that your insurance company will likely pay. Ensure that you thoroughly research the process before hiring a company to do the work.

How To Use Landscaping for Flood Prevention

1/11/2021 (Permalink)

Downspout diverter Make sure downspouts are extended to at least three feet away from your building to avoid flooding

Four Landscaping Methods That Can Prevent Disasters From Happening

Heavy rainstorms can lead to severe flooding if your home is not landscaped strategically in Croydon Heights, PA. Outside flooding can lead to inside flooding if water seeps into your house, damaging your home and property.


1. Build a Rain Garden
Rain gardens can significantly reduce the amount of outside flooding from rain runoff by absorbing excess water into the soil. A well-designed rain garden will use native plants that low-maintenance and require little watering between rainfall. When installing your garden, place plants with a high tolerance for wet soil in the center. Water will drain from the outer edges of the garden and flow to the center before seeping into the soil.


2. Install a Downspout Diverter
Downspout diverters redirect water away from your home, often into a catchment container. Using a diverter can prevent water from collecting in areas near your home that are prone to flooding after a rain storm. This keeps water away from the sides of your house, which are common spots for standing water. If you notice water getting into the house, call a professional storm service to help with cleanup and restoration.


3. Add Driveway Drainage
Adding drainage material, such as gravel or grass, on either side of your driveway can help prevent water from running off your driveway and pooling outside your home.


4. Create Swales
Dips and depressions in landscaping, also known as swales, redirect rain drainage to areas that are more tolerant of standing water, such as a rain garden or dry well. To optimize swales and slow down the flow of runoff, use deep-rooted plants to line the slopes and place rocks along the bottom of the swale.
Landscaping is extremely useful in helping prevent outside flooding near your home. Preventing water from collecting outside of your house will lower your risk of damage and costly repairs.

6 Causes of Commercial Water Damage

12/27/2020 (Permalink)

air movers placed on carpet Commercial water restoration in Bristol, PA

Six Common Causes Of Water Damage

Having to hire water repair professionals can put a damper on your business. Plus, any issues that cause water damage can also put endanger your employees. Therefore, if you spot any signs of water problems, you need to take action. This means addressing the potential causes of damage. Here are six common causes of water damage in commercial businesses.

1. Windows
Improperly sealed windows can cause more damage in a commercial building than a broken pipe. This is because water can seep in around the windows leading to mold growth and damaged wood or drywall.

2. Pipes
Changes in pressure, deterioration over time, and freezing temperatures can lead to a broken pipe, which everyone knows is bad. Plumbing issues can lead to damaged walls, water stains, unstable floors, and mold.

3. Foundation
If your roof drainage system is clogged, water can fall close to your building. This can do damage to your foundation. The result is puddles alongside or inside your building.

4. Roof
Owning a business where your roof is regularly exposed to heavy rain and snow can cause issues in your roof. Additionally, improper snow and ice removal from your roof can cause damage. This can lead to a leaky roof that leads to mold growth, fire hazards, and structural issues.

5. HVAC
Your HVAC system uses ducts to heat and cool your business. These ducts can wear down over time, resulting in leaks that can cause water damage to your building.

6. Sewer
Sewer water backups can lead to infections and illnesses. If you notice any gurgling drains or backed-up toilets, you should have the problem fixed and immediately call a qualified restoration company.
If you see any threats to your business in Bristol, PA, you should have them fixed immediately. This can include broken pipes, flooding from a sewer backup, or other potential water damage sources. Fixing these issues can keep your business running and your employees healthy.