Fire Prevention Month
Fire Damage Maryville
October is Fire Prevention Month a perfect time to examine emergency preparedness plans for your home and business, including your fire escape plan. Do you have a fire escape plan? Have you changed your smoke alarm batteries within the last year?
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) designates a week each October to focus on fire prevention awareness. The 2019 theme is “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practice Your Escape” which works to educate everyone about the small but important actions they can take to keep themselves and those around them safe with the planning and practicing of a fire escape plan. In a typical home fire, you may have as little as one to two minutes to escape safely from the time the smoke alarm sounds. Escape planning and practice can help you make the most of the time you have,giving everyone enough time to get out.
Tools For Keeping You Safe
One of the best precautions you can take is to purchase a good quality weather radio. A weather radio is designed to alert you to potentially dangerous weather situations, like an approaching tornado. It allows you to be warned ahead of storms, providing you time to seek shelter. A weather radio is the most reliable source for weather alerts.
Weather radios have made many advancements over the years and are very affordable. Most basic weather radios average around $30 and can be programmed to only alert you for the weather alerts you choose.
When shopping for a weather radio look for the following key features.
- Reviewable alerts (you can scroll through alerts and turn off the siren for alerts you do not wish to hear)
- Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME)
- Alert programming (alerts when specific counties are threatened, ensuring you only receive alerts for your country)
- Ease of programming
If you need help programming your weather radio, you can always contact your local National Weather Service Office or for additional information, including county codes for your state, visit NOAA Weather Radio website at www.nws.gove/nwr
Winter weather can bring about more issues than just slippery roads and a sidewalk to shovel. If you live where temperatures sink below freezing level, you are at risk for frozen pipes and ice dams, which can create a major disaster at your home or property.
Frozen pipes are often those exposed to the cold weather, such as those outside your house, or in cold areas such as basements, attics, garages or kitchen cabinets.
A frozen pipe can burst at the point where the ice blockage inside the pipe is located, but typically the rupture is caused by the backflow pressure between the water source and the obstruction. A burst pipe can cause considerable damage to your property if not addressed quickly.
To prevent pipes from freezing, here are a few steps you can take, according to The American Red Cross.
-Be sure to thoroughly drain water from swimming pool and sprinkler lines, as well as outside hoses.
-Open kitchen cabinets to let warm air circulate near the plumbing.
-When the weather is frigid, let water drip from faucets that may come from exposed pipes.
-Keep your heat set to the same temperature both day and night.
Ice dams can be a little-known, but a significant problem during the snowy season. They form when heated air melts roof snow downward into water dammed behind still-frozen ice. When water cannot safely flow or run into the gutter system, it will cause backflow under the roof ’s shingles and into the structure’s interior areas.
Icicles can be an initial sign of an ice dam, according to Travelers.com. To spot ice dams inside; check for water stains or moisture in your attic or along with the ceiling of the exterior walls of your house. Water stains or moisture may be an indication that an ice dam has formed and water has penetrated the roof membrane.”
Removing an ice dam as soon as it is found is vital to help prevent damage to your property and can be done using heated cables, a roof shovel or calcium chloride ice melter.
If winter weather causes water damage to your property, SERVPRO® of Blount County is only a call away, 24/7, ready to restore to preloss condition.
The Drying Process
Did you know, there is a science behind the process of drying? The knowledge of psychrometrics is essential to restoring a water damaged structure to its preloss condition. While your initial reaction may be to grab a few towels to mop up the mess and place a fan or two around, the damage is still occurring.
SERVPRO of Blount County has been trained to use top-of-the-line equipment to help speed up Mother Nature, including equipment to help dry hardwood floors, tough-to-reach spaces inside walls, and much more. SERVPRO of Blount County also uses state-of-the-art monitoring equipment and a proven scientific process to help speed the drying of your home or business. What exactly does “speed up Mother Nature” mean? A wet building can often dry naturally because the environment always seeks equilibrium. When materials are drenched, moisture will naturally move to drier air on the surface of the material but only if the air is, indeed dryer. The only problem is, nature takes too long and secondary damages may occur while the building is drying out.
To help with this process, SERVPRO of Blount County is proud to utilize a newly developed tool exclusive to SERVPRO called DryBook and DryBook Mobile. The SERVPRO DryBook is a proprietary tool allowing us to capture and track the steps of restoration project according to industry best practices and standards. This ensures your restoration is completed correctly and efficiently. It also improves results and restores your property at a faster rate, getting you back in your home or business sooner.
Imagine coming home from work to a flooded home, thanks to a faulty hose on your washing machine. You are ready to pull your hair out! You know you need help now because those hardwood floors will absorb a lot of water, as will the lower portion of your walls. You also know, if left untreated, water damage can lead to mold and mildew problems. You may not know that it can also cause structural weakness to the damaged areas.
Call SERVPRO of Blount County as soon as possible to start the drying process. Our professional techs know all too well the damages water can do to your home. We have all the equipment needed to dry your walls and floors before that damage becomes permanent.
We also know that problems can happen anytime - day or night; this is the reason we offer our customers 24-Hour Emergency Services. We understand you need immediate professional help after your home is flooded.
SERVPRO of Blount County is a locally owned and operated business with professionally trained technicians. Our techs are skilled in water restoration, fire/smoke restoration, mold remediation, HVAC and duct cleaning as well as any other cleaning that may be needed. We know how to assess the problem and get the job done quickly and efficiently.
Our techs have all the knowledge and tools they need to restore your property correctly. We use four factors to help determine how long it will take to dry your home:
* Temperature: needs to be kept between 70 and 90 degrees.
* Humidity: ideally between 30% and 60%.
* Extraction of water: the more that can be removed, the better.
* Air Movement: need to steadily move wet air away from wet surfaces.
SERVPRO of Blount County works with you and your insurance company, providing you with any paperwork you need to process your claim.
No matter what time of day or night, when an emergency happens, you can trust SERVPRO to respond to your water removal needs quickly. It's nice to know that someone has your back when a crisis strikes.
What is Lurking Behind Your Vanity?
Mold can be anywhere in your home, and many times it is in places that you least expect it. This homeowner in Maryville was not aware of the amount of mold that was hiding behind her vanity. She noticed a small leak under her sink and called SERVPRO of Blount County to evaluate the issue. Our technicians found the extent of damage was more than she expected. Apparently the leak had been going on for some time. Mold can start to develop within 72 hours but remain hidden for a long time. The mold in this home was able to grow due to the faucet that was leaking.
Mold can become a serious problem and health risk if not dealt with my trained professionals. SERVPRO of Blount County has the experience and equipment to handle any mold damage in Maryville, Alcoa and throughout Blount County. Give us a call at 865-982-2332
Smoke Alarms: Saves Lives
Smoke alarms save lives when properly installed and maintained, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
In homes, smoke alarms should be in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area, and on every level, including the basement. Extra smoke alarms may be needed in large homes.
Test smoke alarms monthly using the test button. Smoke alarms with non-replaceable batteries need the entire smoke alarm unit replaced every ten years. Other alarms need batteries replaced every year, and the group replaced every ten years. If the alarm chirps are signaling low battery, take the proper steps to replace the unit or the batteries immediately.
Never disable or remove the battery from an alarm. Almost half of the fires where smoke alarms were present but did not activate had missing or disconnected batteries (NFPA).
If you need help installing, testing or changing batteries in your smoke alarms, contact your local fire department, an electrician or the American Red Cross.
Be sure your home has a fire emergency plan in place and conduct regular fire drills with your family.
For more information on Emergency Preparedness, contact your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional.
Heating Safety Tips
Keep anything flammable at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove or a portable n space heater. Have a three foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy n screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cold before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
Test smoke alarms monthly.
Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
If your property does suffer fire damage, contact your local SERVPRO® of Blount County Professionals.
PREPARING FOR A FLOOD
Flood Damage Maryville
Flooding can happen fast in many environments. The American Red Cross recommends having the following list of items packed and ready to go in the event of an evacuation due to flooding.
• Water—3+ day supply; one gallon per person per day
• Food—3+ day supply of non- perishable, easy-to-prepare food
• Battery-powered or hand-crank
radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if
• Extra batteries
• First Aid kit
• Medications (7-day supply) and
medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)
• Multi-purpose tool
• Sanitation/personal hygiene items
• Copies of secret documents
(medication list and pertinent medical information, deed/lease to home, birth certificates, insurance policies)
• Cell phone with chargers
• Family and emergency contact
• Extra cash
• Emergency blanket
• Map(s) of the area
• Baby supplies (bottles, formula,
baby food, diapers)
• Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food,
• Tools/supplies for securing your home
• Extra set of car keys and house keys
• Extra clothing, hat, and sturdy shoes
• Rain gear
• Insect repellent and sunscreen
• Camera for photos of damage
Call The Cleanup Team That is Faster to Any Size Disaster
According to the National Weather Service (NOAA), "Approximately, five percent of all Presidential disaster declarations are associated with flooding.” NOAA lists the most common flood hazards in the United States as:
• Flash Flooding
• River Flooding
• Storm Surge and Coastal
Inundation from Tropical
and Non-Tropical Systems • Burn Scars/Debris Flows
(Caused by Wildfires)
• Ice/Debris Jams
• Dry Wash (Caused by heavy
rainfall in dry areas)
• Dam Breaks/Levee Failure
Just because you haven’t experienced a flood doesn’t mean you will not live in the future. 20% of all claims paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) were for policies in low-risk communities. On average, floods cost $3.5 billion in annual losses in the United States.
When catastrophic water damage happens to you, SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals can help. They can help you prepare ahead of time with an Emergency Ready Profile® (ERP), or respond to any size disaster to begin cleanup and restoration to get you back in your home as soon as possible.
SERVPRO® of Blount County Professionals are ready to help make it “Like it never even happened.”