Education Corner

Flood Safety at Home

  • 04/10/2019
  • 3:48:03

Flood Safety at Home
 

There are several hidden dangers that could be overlooked when your home is flooded.
 

     •First, to prevent further damage:

     •Get pets and children onto higher ground.

     •Move valuables up from the basement.

     •Raise appliances on blocks.
 

Electricity is a major safety factor during a flood.
 

  1.      1.The electricity needs to be turned off.

  2.      2.Do not touch a circuit breaker if you are standing in water or have wet hands.  We recommend calling an electrician to shut off your power.

  3.      3.If there is a wire on the ground, assume that it is electrically charged no matter what type of wire it is.

  4.      4.All electronic devices need to be professionally clean to remove sediments and toxins. 


 

Another danger is contamination.
 

Once the water is out, you need to consider that there could be possible contamination by mud, bacteria from sewage and chemical toxins.

These can all leave a residue that you can’t see with the human eye. Even though porous material has dried, they can still contain contaminants that could create serious health threats.

You should throw away all items that are porous once you inventory them and the insurance company gives the go-ahead. 


 

Mold is a danger that needs to be considered also.
 

Make sure everything is thoroughly dried out.
 

After a flood, the following could indicate mold issues: 

     •Musty or earthy smells

     •Textured growth of any color

     •Discoloration on your walls or ceilings

If you suspect you have a mold issue, the area will need to be tested for mold. 


 

What can a restoration company do to help you if you have had a flood?
 

     •Damage assessment

     •Clean-up, removal, and repair

     •Carpet Drying

     •Mold abatement and eradication 

     •Reconstruction and rebuild
 

Even if you do not think you live in a flood-prone area, it is important to think through what steps you need to take in case a flood happens.

After the Fire: What Do You Do?

  • 10/23/2018
  • 10:00:00

You have had a fire/smoke event at your home or business. The fire department has left, and it is time for you to go back in and assess the damage. When you go back inside you may see black, heavy soot covering everything, with part of your home destroyed by fire; or you may be pleasantly surprised to see very little soot and just have a very strong smell throughout your building. In either scenario, it is what you cannot see that is most dangerous.

The soot and smoke left behind may contain many dangerous substances that can affect your health quickly or a little at a time over many years. Toxic volatile organic compounds (VOC's) go through an off-gassing process after the fire is extinguished that can last for years if left alone. Dioxins are also very dangerous, they "are formed when products containing carbon and chlorine are burned, such as plastics containing PVC. Even in picograms (parts per trillion), dioxins are associated with severe health damage that can shorten the lives of people exposed to it, and potentially that of their offspring and future generations. The genetic effects may skip a generation and reappear in subsequent generations...according to researcher Joe Thornton,...'There is no safe level of dioxin exposure.'" (Sean Scott, Toxic Exposure; Restoration and Remediation Magazine)

Gases and particulates in the air can be poisonous and exposure to particles leads to nearly 20,000 premature deaths in America every year. Soot particles are ultrafine, less than half of the size of a red blood cell, so they can pass directly into the bloodstream when inhaled.

These dangers as well as countless other gases, chemicals and dusts are caused by the wide variety of products found in your home or business. Plastics, chemicals, electronics, fabrics, fiberglass, wood, adhesives, alloys, food, medicines and all the other things you come into contact with every day pose different health risks when burned, melted or heated.

For these reasons it is very important to have your home or business professionally cleaned and restored by a qualified fire remediation company. While our crews use specials techniques and chemicals to clean up your property, our equipment is running around the clock, cleaning the air in your home to make sure that it is safe for you and your family, or co-workers to return when we are done.

If you ever need our services after a smoke or fire event; from emergency board-up immediately after, through the cleaning and restoration process; call Master Clean at 715-748-3121.

Fires in the Workplace, Causes and How to Prevent Them

  • 10/08/2018
  • 9:00:00

In addition to being very dangerous, fires in the workplace can be very costly due to damages as well as down time and loss of production for the business. There are 115,000 structure fires in non-residential properties annually, resulting in $3.1 billion in direct property damage each year according to research done by the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA). As is also the case with fires in the home, the leading cause of fires in the workplace is cooking equipment, followed by fires caused by electrical and lighting equipment.

Every workplace is different; some have higher fire risks than others. However, many of the same general precautions can be taken to prevent fires and to limit the damage caused by fires if one is to break out.

Here are some basic fire prevention tips that apply to most workplaces:

  • Do not allow areas around electric panels to become blocked or cluttered
  • Make sure machines, tools, equipment are properly maintained
  • Report electrical hazards and only allow licensed professionals to repair, change or add wiring or outlets
  • Be aware of proper handling, ventilation and disposal practices for all chemicals and products used in the workplace
  • If smoking is allowed, have designated smoking areas
  • Follow OSHA guidelines including posting emergency numbers, placing fire extinguishers where needed, and providing or obtaining proper safety training

Visit OSHA.gov to find out if your workplace is in compliance with their standards.

Remember that if your workplace experiences a fire or a smoke event, call Master Clean in Medford to bring you back to the highest standards of clean and safety as quickly as possible to minimize downtime and lost revenue. Call 715-748-3121.