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- What To Do After A Flood
Recovering quickly from floods with some useful tips:
Floods are the most frequent natural disaster happening at any time of the year. They are most often caused by heavy rainfall or rapid snow melting. If your home, apartment or business has suffered flood or mold damage here are some steps you could take to ensure safety and health security of your family members as well as colleagues.
Take care of yourself first-
- Prior to entering the flooded building you need to check for any damage in structure and sagging ceilings and ensure it is not in the danger of collapsing.
- Take care as there may be hidden dangers in the flood water like sharp objects, raised manhole covers and pollution.
- You need to be careful about live wires and electrical shorts before turning off the main power supply.
- Keep children, sick family members and pets out of the flood-affected area until clean-up is completed.
- Before beginning any clean-up, make sure you have the proper personal protection like wearing rubber boots, rubber gloves and goggles.
- The recovery period is long and chaotic. Try and contain your stress and be patient. Listen to family members for advice and keep a reassuring attitude.
Get your home first aid –
- No open flame should be used in the flooded area as light source since there might be trapped gas inside; a flashlight can be used instead.
- Waysof lowering humidity and letting the place air are to open up doors, windows and closets, use fans, dehumidifiers and desiccants.
- If you find any leaking water pipes, cut off the water supply by turning off the valve at your water meter.
- After floodwaters are no longer on top of the ground, you can start pumping the water out of the basement.Do not use gasoline-powered pumps.
- After making things safe take steps tofind and protect valuables such as money, jewellery, insurance papers, photographs, and family heirlooms. Wash the mud off before the items can dry.
- Sort contents into those that you want to save and those that need to be discarded. Out of the items soaked in floodwaters food, cosmetics, medical supplies, stuffed toys should always be thrown out.
Rest of the work would be easier if you would restore the following:
- Gas and oil:
Have a professional restore gas service to your home, relight pilot lights, check and clean oil pump if it has got wet and do a final check of the system.
- Water supply:
- Public water suppliers usually provide water soon after the flood.
- Use it to hose your home only or for sanitation purposes if you are unsure of the quality.
Buy bottled water for drinking.
- Check with a licensed electrician or a municipal inspector to see how much work you can do on your wiring.
- The electrical system should be tackled in two parts: the main breaker or fuse box and the flooded electric circuits.
- The walls, floors, closets, shelves, contents—every flooded part of your house or office—should be intensely washed.
- Tackle one room at a time. A two bucket approach is most efficient: use one bucket for rinse water and the other for the cleaner.
- Use cleaners, disinfectants, mildew removers and liquid bleaches to do the work.
- In flooded areas you will be exposed to dangerous chemicals and germs that can make you very sick. So, wash up frequently, make sure the water is safe and disinfect everything.
- File your insurance claim with your agent and make sure you are fairly reimbursed for your loss.
- Three Types of Water Damage and How to Effectively Handle Them
Just like fire, water can be a good servant but, at times, a terrible monster. Leaks, floodwater, and other water issues can have a shattering impact in your home. Thus, as a homeowner, it is imperative that you equip yourself with relevant information on the types of water damage; how to handle and remedy water issues when they strike. Unfortunately, water issues don’t give notices as to when they will strike. They strike when least expected and tow along with unsavory concomitants.
As a rule of thumb, you should always respond to water damages immediately. This is regardless of what kind of water damage your property is facing. Failure to respond promptly can lead to extensive damages. Hiring a professional water damage restoration company to help you when water damage strikes would be a judicious move. Such professionals will not only help you salvage your belonging, but also ensure that that there will be no mold problems in your house. It is worth mentioning that water has the ability to penetrate deep into your house structure; hence, if not properly removed, it will not only cause mold problems but also impair the structure of your house.
There are three different types of water damage. Each of these types comes with a varying degree of severity. Having a firm grasp of the three types of water damage will help you to respond effectively and promptly when they happen. Below are the three types of water damages:
Clean Water Damage
Clean water damage involves water that has not been contaminated in any way. Although this type of water damage does not pose any immediate health risks to persons nearly, it can lead to extensive damages if it is not fixed in a timely fashion. Clean water damage is usually triggered by overflowing sinks, bathtubs or other plumbing issues in the house. Luckily, clean water damage is the easiest to handle and is also much less hazardous than the other two types. However, if this kind of water damage is not properly cleaned and dried, it can lead to mold and fungus growth, which is a major health hazard.
In the event the clean water has been standing in your home for more than 24 hours, it is important that you hire a water damage restoration company to ensure that the water is thoroughly dried.
Gray Water Damage
Gray water damage is usually slightly contaminated. However, this type of water damage is regarded as hazardous. The contamination stems from either the nature of the water’s source or because of neglect. For instance, if the flood damage comes from a toilet or a washing machine that has overflowed, the water is considered gray due to its origin. On the other hand, if clean water damage is left stagnant for a considerably long period, it will be regarded gray because of neglect.
Any water that has been used or is contaminated in any way is considered hazardous because it contains microbes. It is crucial that you hire professional to help you remedy gray water damage. However, if you want to begin the cleaning and drying process before the restoration services arrive, it is highly advisable that you wear protective gloves. Gloves will ensure that your skin does not come to contact with the contaminated water.
Black Water Damage
The most dangerous and extremely hazardous type of water damage is the black water damage. The water in this type of damage is highly contaminated. It contains hazardous microbes and toxic material such as fungi, bacteria, chemicals, or pesticides. Black water damage is usually caused by natural disasters or sewage damage. Black water damage can cause sickness, and in some cases even death. If you home has been struck by this kind of water damage, it is best that you let a competent professional to handle the situation.
Just because a particular type water damage is termed as ‘gray’ or ‘black’ does not necessarily mean that that will be the color of the water when it strikes your home. Theses as just simple terms used to denote the level of severity.
Handling Water Damage
When water damage strikes your home, there are some steps you can take to ensure that you save your belongings safely. First, you must make sure that you switch off the electricity from the main switch to avoid electrocution as you salvage your belongings. Secondly, you should move electronics and valuable stuff to a higher ground or simply outside. In case the type of water damage is gray or black, you should make sure that you wear protective gloves and boots before endeavoring to salvage your belongings. As do all this, make sure that you a qualified professional is on the way coming to help you.