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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Fire Damage Blog Posts

Fire Safety for Preschoolers

10/4/2021 (Permalink)

a firefighter on one knee talking and giving high five to a child If fire should take over and do damage in your home, SERVPRO of Carrollton is here to help.

When it comes to fire safety, it’s likely that you’re generally aware of the important steps to take in case of a fire.

You’ve been told about stop, drop and roll, emergency plans, calling 9-1-1 and the like for so long now that the knowledge is pretty engrained. And yet, even with after the reinforcement of safety campaigns and fire drills, many adults still panic in real-life fire scenarios.

So knowing that children have taken in much less information and are much more likely to freeze or panic in an emergency, how much more important is it for us to take special care to teach and inform them about fire safety? Sadly, children younger than age 5 are twice as likely to die in fires as adults and older kids.

Here are a few essential things preschoolers need to be taught about how to think and react in a fire situation:

Firefighters aren’t scary.

Young children can be spooked by first responders—hey, if somebody four times your size walked up to you in a weird costume, you’d be intimidated, too. Familiarizing young children with who firefighters are and why they wear what they wear can keep them from becoming frightened when they come face to face with one.

You can also take a tour of local fire stations and teach them how firefighters can help kids in the event of a fire. Trust us, they’ll love the trucks.

Stay under the smoke.

When’s the last time you crawled around on your hands and knees? It’s probably been a while, but to your preschooler this style of moving through the house isn’t all that far removed. Teach them to assume the crawling position to stay under the smoke that comes from a fire in the house.

Tell them why breathing in smoke is dangerous, and crawl around with them—you can even make a game of it.

Stop, drop and roll.

A young child’s first reaction to having clothing catch fire will probably be to run, which can cause the fire to spread more quickly. Teach your preschooler to cover his or her face, drop to the floor, and roll side to side until the fire is safely smothered and put out.

Repeat this often, because it’s an unnatural action.

Nobody wants to think about fires burning in the home, but it’s an unfortunate reality. If fire should take over and do damage in your home, SERVPRO is here to help.

Fire Sprinkler Myths Debunked

9/4/2021 (Permalink)

a silver water sprinkler hanging on ceiling If your home should sustain damage from a fire of any kind, SERVPRO of Carrollton is here to help.

Most of the experience many of us have with fire is fiction—we have a mental image of what happens when a sprinkler system goes off because of what we’ve seen on TV shows or in movies, or even what we’ve read in books. But these portrayals are for story effect, and often don’t reflect reality.

In fact, much of what you may presume about the operation and impact may not be accurate. Let’s debunk some myths about sprinkler systems:

“I don’t need a sprinkler system.”

First: Your home smoke alarms are essential, but they can only alert you. They are powerless to stop a fire. Sprinklers both detect and act, saving lives and property quickly.

Second: Yes, the fire department will come, but in the nine to 12 minutes they need to get to your home, a sprinkler system may have already been able to do the necessary work to contain or put out the fire. Without a sprinkler, you’re looking at more damage from the fire, the smoke, and the water it takes to quench the spreading flames.

“They’re not worth the damage they cause.”

Many people assume (because of movie portrayals) that once a sprinkler system is activated, the entire system is triggered and water instantly sprays everywhere. In truth, the system operates in independent zones, and only the sprinkler closest to the detected fire will activate. And this is most often all that’s necessary: Multiple sprinkler heads are only needed 16% of the time in home fires in which sprinklers are triggered.

And sprinklers cause much less water damage than having the fire department hose your place down for an hour or more. Compare the 10–26 gallons per minute of a sprinkler system to up to a fire hydrant soaking your home with multiplied hundreds, even thousands of gallons per minute.

“They can’t be that effective.”

They really can. The risk of dying in a home fire is reduced by 80% when sprinklers are present, and the average property loss from a home fire with active sprinklers is cut by about 70%.

“Sprinklers are a disaster of their own waiting to happen.”

Sprinklers can occasionally leak, but that situation is less likely and less severe than a typical plumbing problem you’d encounter at home. And like any water pipes, sprinklers are susceptible to freezing temperatures, but installers are held to standards that mandate that sprinklers be safely and properly installed in regions where freezing is common.

Overall, the value and loss prevention of sprinkler systems make them an appealing and potentially lifesaving investment for your home.

If your home should sustain damage from a fire of any kind, we’re here to help. Get in touch today to get SERVPRO on your side.

Handling Grease Fires That Flare Up on Your Grill

8/30/2021 (Permalink)

fire on a grill If you have had fire damage to your home due to a grilling incident, you can count on SERVPRO of Carrollton to be there for you.

Grease fires can happen to anyone when they are cooking, but that does not make them any less frightening or damaging to you and your home. Because grills are often used primarily to cook meat, grease fires are extremely common during cookouts—there is data that indicates that over 5,000 grill fires happen each year, leading to millions in damages and thousands of personal burns.

Although anyone can experience a grease fire no matter how many precautions they take, by following these safety guidelines, you can significantly reduce the chances of one happening to you, keeping your cookouts safer for everyone around.

How to Prevent and Handle Grease Fires When Grilling

  1. Perform the proper grill maintenance. Cleaning your grill’s grease traps and drip pans is always the No. 1 recommendation when it comes to preventing grease fires, because it is something that even the most experienced grill masters can forget. These trays will typically be located underneath your burners and should be removed and emptied when the grill is off. Making it a habit to do this before you start grilling for the day is best.
  2. Keep your grates cleaned. In addition to your drip pans, your grill’s grates can also use some TLC to prevent fires. Grease can become stuck on the grates after you grill, and because these can ignite if they get too hot, they can pose a hazard if not handled. Scrape your grill grates thoroughly after every use while the grill is still warm to prevent these food bits from posing a hazard next time.
  3. Have a fire extinguisher handy. While many fires can be extinguished with water, putting out a grease fire requires special considerations due to their unique nature. Keep a multi-purpose fire extinguisher that is rated for grease fires nearby every time you use your grill so you can stop any fires before they grow out of hand.

If you have had fire damage to your home due to a grilling incident, you can count on us to be there for you. Give us a call at any hour to learn more about our restoration processes and receive a quick response from our team of technicians.

Why We Approach All Damages With a Restoration-First Mindset

7/20/2021 (Permalink)

a person on their knees covering their face with their hands after a major fire Have you sustained damage and not sure what do to next? We are here to help, contact SERVPRO of Carrollton.

If you sustain damage to your home, whether it be due to a fire, a flood or some other type of scenario, it can be difficult to know what comes next. Many people who have never had serious damages before might assume that a damaged area must be completely rebuilt and that all items must be liquidated and replaced—but when you work with us, that is not necessarily the case.

When we approach household damages, we do so with a restoration-first mindset. After helping countless families in the area recover from various damages, we understand how helpful it is to have your items restored instead of replaced.

Not only are many things irreplaceable due to sentimental value, but being able to keep your belongings also saves you time and money as your family works on recovering emotionally from the event.

The Benefits of Our Restoration-Focused Approach

We can salvage many irreplaceable items. While an insurance adjuster can easily come in and provide you with a dollar value for everything in your home, we understand that it is not always that simple. Objects such as family heirlooms and photographs could never be replaced for any amount of money, which is why we will do everything we are able to restore them instead.

We are able to work with your insurance. If you are able to claim damages on your insurance, such as in the event of water damage, you certainly should—however, this can lead to a higher premium as a result. We will work directly with your insurance to lower the costs with restoration instead of liquidation to save you money.

We can make your items safe for use again. There are many things to consider when an object is damaged by fire and water, such as lingering smoke and soot odors or the possibility of mold beginning to grow. However, we have the technology to make sure your items are totally safe to use once more. We can clean, deodorize and sanitize your items so you can be certain they are safe for your family to use.

If you have sustained damage and are not sure what comes next, you can depend on us. Contact us at any hour to see how we can help you with every aspect of the restoration process.

Fireworks Safety

6/30/2021 (Permalink)

multicolor fireworks Celebrate safely this Independence Day.

Summer is synonymous with barbecues, parades, and fireworks. The National Safety Council advises everyone enjoy fireworks at public displays conducted by professionals, and not to use any fireworks at home. They may be legal, but they are not safe. If consumer fireworks are legal to buy where you live and you choose to use them, be sure to follow the following safety tips:

  • Never allow young children to handle fireworks. Older children should use them only under close adult supervision.
  • Never use fireworks while impaired by drugs or alcohol.
  • Anyone using fireworks or standing nearby should wear protective eyewear.
  • Never hold lighted fireworks in your hands.
  • Never light fireworks indoors. Only use them away from people, houses, and flammable materials. 
  • Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
  • Maintain a safe distance after lighting fireworks.
  • Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks.
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby to fully extinguish fireworks that do not go off or in case of fire.

*Restoration Newsline Vol 32, Iss 7

An Overview of Applying for a Disaster Loan as a Small Business Owner

11/6/2020 (Permalink)

Disasters are something that no one ever wants to experience, especially if they own their own business. The damage done from disasters can completely change your business’ plans for the future, and often, business owners are never able to recover.

While there is no way to predict when or how a disaster will occur, the best thing you can do is ensure you have a plan in place.

You will often be able to rely on your insurance for at least some coverage related to the disaster, but these funds are often not enough or available fast enough to be as helpful as they could be. Fortunately, the Small Business Administration (SBA) has developed a robust loan program to help small businesses in the aftermath so they can receive the funds they need.

Utilizing the Disaster Loan Program After a Disaster Impacts Your Business
What can I use the loans for? While many damages that a disaster causes can be claimed on your insurance, this can be a long process and often does not cover every expense your business may face. The SBA loans can be utilized for costs to repair damage as well as to cover a loss in revenue so you can have the funds you need to cover bills, payroll and other expenses that do not halt just because a disaster occurs.

When can I apply for a disaster loan? In order for the disaster loan funds to be made available, a disaster must be declared by the SBA in your area. From there, you can apply for a loan and work with the SBA to see what you are eligible for and when you will receive it.

How can I go about getting repairs done to my business? Starting on the process of having restoration done to your commercial property can be daunting, but it is important to begin as quickly as possible to prevent any secondary damages. Having a commercial restoration company you can trust is important, as is calling them as quickly as possible after you discover damage to your business.

If you need commercial restoration, we are here to help. You can get in touch with us at any time to report your damages and get a quick response. Contact us to learn more.