Recent Storm Damage Posts
Community Flood Prevention Efforts
Retaining walls hold swollen soil in place
Weather Related Flood Events
Floods are a common risk across the country, causing many to evacuate towns until floodwaters recede. Within a place of business, proper maintenance on water systems helps prevent rising water, but outside forces are harder to control. The most common types of weather-related flood events include
- Excessive rainfall
- Rapidly melting snow
- Dam failures
When rivers swell with water and major weather patterns leave the ground soggy, there are flood prevention steps communities such as Sumner, WA, can take.
Town Planning and Drainage Systems
As buildings go up, waterways must remain unblocked and drainage systems must be free from debris and blockage. Town planners can work to create neighborhoods that allow excess water to drain away without obstruction.
Before business owners have to evacuate their property and work with flood damage cleanup and remediation professionals, it's best to educate them about the risk of rising water. For example, some landscaping elements are light enough that water washes it into drainage systems. This clogs the system and increases the risk of flooding. As business owners understand what causes floods, they're more likely to avoid behaviors that increase the risk and impact flooding.
Landscaping and Vegetation
Property owners in Sumner, WA, can reduce erosion (which sends debris into drainage systems and increases the risk of flooding) by planting grass, shrubs, and trees to hold soil in place. This flood prevention and landscaping tactic may also slow down the rush of water into communities.
Retaining Walls, Retention Basins, and Levees
There are many structures that provide safety from rising rivers and overflowing seas. A sea defense wall prevents tidal waves from sending water into communities. Retaining walls hold swollen soil in place, and retention ponds provide temporary storage spaces for floodwater.
The more you know about flood prevention tactics, the better you can avoid flood damage to your property. In addition to preparing for flood cleaning plans, take steps to protect your business from water damage.
3 Travel Tips To Follow During a Flood
Don't drive through flooded roads
How to React When a Flood Occurs
When a flood occurs in Fairfax, WA, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. However, certain actions, such as driving through a flooded street, can put you at further risk. It's often important to know what mistakes to avoid and how to react when a flood occurs.
1. Keep Informed
When storms with heavy rains occur, certain areas become more prone to flooding. In order to respond in a safe manner, it's important to keep informed about the weather in your area. The National Weather Service often will issue advisories that can provide you with important information about where flooding is likely to occur. Your local news stations, radios and weather apps can all be useful sources of information before, during and after a flood.
2. Don't Drive Through Flooded Roads
In an effort to leave an area that is under water, you may be tempted to drive through a flooded street. However, floodwater that appears shallow can be deceiving. Your vehicle can easily be swept away by rushing floodwater, and even if the water is not moving swiftly, your vehicle can quickly get stuck. Instead of attempting to drive through a street that is flooded, it's safer to turn around and avoid the area.
3. Don't Try To Save Your Home
During a flood, some people are tempted to stay at their houses in order to protect them. However, staying at your home can be dangerous during a flood. Items can be replaced, and emergency restoration services can assist you in restoring your property after a flood. Staying at your home during a flood can put you at risk, and it's often wise to take only what you need and to seek out higher ground elsewhere.
Knowing what travel tips to follow and what to avoid during a flood can help you to evacuate the area safely. In order to keep secure during a flood, it's often wise to stay informed, avoid driving through a flooded street and to leave your home when necessary.
Hail Damage in Puyallup, WA
Hail Damage after a Storm.
The dreaded sound of ice pellets hitting your office window tells you that the storm has become more than just wind and water. When you experience a hailstorm in Puyallup, WA, it can cause extensive damage to your commercial property. You can hire professionals to take care of roof damage so that you avoid bigger problems in the future. Here are some other problems to check for after hail.
Types of Damage Hail Can Cause
- Cracked or Missing Shingles.
Hail damage to the roof can break your shingles. Some shingles may even come loose or detach completely. A roofing company is generally required to fix the roof, but luckily most building insurance packages have provisions to cover at least part of the cost.
Roof damage can lead to leaks, which in turn can lead to a whole slew of other problems. A wet attic that goes unnoticed can foster mold growth, turning a water problem into a mold remediation problem. It can also cause insulation to get wet, which renders it ineffective. If that happens, it needs to be replaced. Flood mitigation specialists can test areas with water damage to make sure they are remediated properly.
- Broken Windows.
If the hail is particularly large, it may even break the windows of your building. If that happens, the first thing you need to do after the storm is find a way to board up the space so that as little additional damage as possible occurs. You may not be able to save the windows, but you can help curtail some of the water damage underneath them.
If your business in Puyallup, WA, experiences a hailstorm, it is likely to sustain significant roof damage, leaks and window damage. Keeping track of the damages and having professionals take a second look and clean up the damage can help you in the long run. Report damages accurately to your insurance company to increase your chances of a fair settlement.
4 Ways To Prevent Roof Damage Caused by Strong Winds
Protect your roof with tarps it can help prevent shingles from lifting off your building
4 Ways To Prevent Roof Damage
The roof of your business in Graham, WA, can struggle to combat strong winds and may experience damage, such as a roof leak, that shortens the life of your roof and causes harm to other parts of your building. This can eventually cause other serious issues like water destruction or mold growth if not addressed immediately. Although a water damage restoration company can help you reverse the effects of these issues, you can prepare for storms and avoid a damaged roof with these four preventative actions.
1. Keep Tall Trees Away From Your Building
While trees can improve the appearance of your business’s landscape and create shade for your customers when they’re outdoors, they are vulnerable to falls during a storm. Additionally, branches are prone to break and fly off with strong winds. To prevent extensive roof damage from a fallen tree or flying branches, keep all trees and limbs a safe distance away from your building.
2. Protect Your Roof With Tarps or Plywood
If you know a large storm is coming, placing tarps and plywood on your roof can help prevent shingles from lifting off your building. By holding shingles in place and creating an extra barrier, tarps keep water out and avert a roof leak.
3. Remove Debris and Large Objects From Outside
Debris that is picked up by strong winds and hits your roof can cause extensive damage to your business. Make sure to clean up any debris left outside and store any furniture or other loose outdoor objects. Secure all fence boards as well.
4. Use Strong Roofing Materials
If your business encounters high winds often, and you’re tired of dealing with missing shingles and a roof leak, consider replacing an asphalt roof with a metal, plastic, or stone one. These materials may hold up better during strong storms.
A damaged roof can be a very costly expense, especially if it results in more harm occurring to your business. Protect your roof from the effects of wind and storm damage with the above four tips.
How Does FEMA Help Homeowners After Storms?
Storms can cause a vast amount of damage to a home, and it’s important that each home is assessed on an individual basis.
After your home in Sumner, WA has been affected by storms and flooding, it can be helpful to seek assistance. Understanding how FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) can assist homeowners can be useful to you after a flood.
1. Evaluates the Home
Once your application for assistance has been received and when it is safe to do so, the agency will send someone from the organization to evaluate your home. Storms can cause a vast amount of damage to a home, and it’s important that each home is assessed on an individual basis. Homes that have sustained widespread damage may require more thorough evaluations, whereas homes that have only been minorly impacted will likely be quicker since damage can be more easily spotted.
2. Provides Documentation
In addition to evaluating the damage that has occurred to your home, FEMA also will document the damage as well. This documentation is often necessary in order for the agency to determine whether or not you qualify for financial aid. Many insurance companies require documentation after a storm has occurred, so it can also be helpful to send the information to your insurance provider.
3. Offers Compensation
In some circumstances, the agency offers financial aid to homeowners whose homes have been majorly affected by a disaster. Regardless of whether or not you do receive aid, you the organization will send you a letter explaining how the decision was made. If you have received aid, the letter will generally suggest that you spend the money on services and items that will improve the state of your home, such as emergency restoration services. Those who were denied aid, however, can make an appeal.
Knowing how FEMA can aid you after a storm can you determine what additional assistance you may require. After a storm, the agency will evaluate your home, document what has occurred and may provide you with compensation.
Why Does Sewer Backup Occur During Heavy Rains?
Sewage backup in Puyallup, WA
Why Does Sewer Backup Occur During Heavy Rains?
When heavy rain water comes to town, a lot of it makes its way into the sewer system of Puyallup, WA. As a result of poor upkeep or inferior drainage systems, the water accumulates pieces of sewage and makes its way into buildings. This is known as sewer backup and presents an extremely dangerous situation because black water can enter a building and pose various problems for the people within.
Too Much Buildup
Sewers can only handle so much. This is particularly true in areas where sewage maintenance has fallen to the wayside. Depending on the direction in which sewage needs to flow, the pipes may not be capable of adequately flowing the liquid. It needs to go somewhere, so it flows upward into the nearest exit, which, in some cases, is a drainage pipe inside your building.
Another reason why sewage water will back up into commercial buildings in Puyallup, WA is obstructions in the sewer system. Tree roots can grow at an excessive rate, causing cracks and breakages in the sewer line. Additionally, sewer systems are only meant for certain types of waste. If too many solid objects get in the system, then it can completely block off an entire section of the sewer. Instead of the water flowing through the sewer, it has to flow out of the nearest exit.
Visit http://www.SERVPROpuyallupsumner.com for more information on water damage.
3 Easy Ways To Avoid Frozen Pipes
Frozen pipes are frequently easily avoidable.
3 Easy Ways To Avoid Frozen Pipes
A burst pipe doesn’t equal holiday fun in Puyallup, WA but pipes do freeze, and consequently break, all winter long. Things like electronics and documents can be destroyed by flooding from a broken pipe in seconds. Buildings that are not inspected after freezing may harbor standing water, which can seriously damage the building itself and endanger human health. Fortunately, frozen pipes and resulting flood damage can largely be avoided with minimal effort.
Preventing Frozen Pipes
When water freezes, it expands. Most water pipes do not, and the force of the freezing water inside often ends in pipe breakage. Follow these three guidelines to keep your water from getting pushy and damaging your pipes:
1. Keep Your Indoor Temperature Up
As long as the water is on, even a vacant building should never have its thermostat set below 55 degrees. In addition, doors to rooms with plumbing should be open if those rooms don’t have their own heat sources. Indoor heat combats the cold that attacks underfloor pipes and those in exterior walls. If the inside temperature is too low, you may wind up with a frozen pipe.
2. Let the Faucet Trickle
On the coldest nights, leaving vulnerable faucets to trickle can prevent a burst pipe. Water freezes fastest when it’s not moving, and a small amount of flow can disrupt the freezing process.
3. Insulate and Install Heating Devices
Pipes located in places like garages and outbuildings are often especially vulnerable. This plumbing may be adequately protected with foam insulation. In colder climates, however, some pipes may require a little extra help. Heat tape is one option. It wraps around a pipe, providing warmth to keep the water inside from freezing via the use of electricity. Other, similar products can be purchased at home improvement stores.
A burst pipe can cause a lot of problems. Nevertheless, frozen pipes are frequently easily avoidable. Keep pipes at a reasonable temperature and let faucet water flow a little when it’s really cold, and you should avert any need for water damage repair this winter or next.
Black Water, Not the Trendy Drink: Top Three Questions About Black Flood Water
The dangers of black flood water go well beyond the idea of normal water damage.
Water damage is one of many concerns after a flood. The more significant worry is honestly not the damage but the water itself. Many people worry about the effects of flood water, but few people understand what black water actually is.
1. What Is It?
Water has three levels of classification: category one is clean water, category two is slightly contaminated water, and category three is highly contaminated water. Black water is considered a category three water. This level of classification means that it is water that can now support bacterial growth. Mostly, this type of water is a mixture of sewage, rivers, and rain, making it highly contaminated.
2. Is It Dangerous?
Yes. There is significant water damage associated with this type of water, and it goes beyond damage to material goods. This water is considered highly toxic to both people and animals, and there is evidence to suggest that ingestion is not necessary for producing these adverse effects. Merely inhaling or coming into contact with the water may cause illness or disease, such as hepatitis, gastroenteritis, diarrhea, leptospirosis, and many others.
3. Can You Remove It Yourself?
No. It is not advisable to remove black water on your own. The adverse health effects of the water make it a hazardous substance. Instead of putting your health at risk and attempting to clean up the water yourself, you could check the Puyallup, WA, area for restoration specialists who have expertise in dealing with this type of substance. These experts have the appropriate tools, protective clothing, and knowledge to ensure that you get back in your home only when it is safe to do so.
The dangers of black flood water go well beyond the idea of normal water damage. It is a highly dangerous substance that presents a significant health risk to anyone who comes in contact, and should therefore only be handled by experienced professionals. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROpuyallupsumner.com/.
How to Maintain a Sump Pump
For the majority of homeowners in Puyallup, WA, and throughout the country, home ownership and home maintenance go hand in hand. And while your house’s sump pump is surely not its most aesthetic feature, it is vital in keeping your home free of the need for flood remediation services. Keeping this behind-the-scenes hero humming along requires some relatively easy maintenance.
Seven Simple Steps.
A thorough quarterly pump checkup is recommended. Whether the pump’s design is submersible or pedestal, the maintenance steps are the similar.
1. Be sure that the pump safely connects to its power source, ideally with a GFCI. Have a look at the integrity of the cord, as well.
2. If you have the recommended backup battery, check to make sure it is working.
3. Before cleaning, unplug the unit.
4. Clean the grate in the basin.
5. Clean the sump pump’s screen or inlet.
6. Inspect drainage pipes to confirm sound connections, and clear any blockages in the vent.
7. Replace the pump and make sure it is level. Refill the basin if necessary and plug in the pump. It should run right away.
When a pump isn’t working, the float’s position is often the problem. If the pump has shifted as a result of vibration or for any other reason, the float arm and switch will not operate correctly. Reposition the pump so that it is level. Another common interruption in a pump’s smooth operation can occur when the impeller has disengaged from the pump shaft. This problem can occur when backflow forces the impeller to reverse direction. Installing a check valve and reattaching the impeller is the solution in this case.
The life of a sump pump is hard to predict, but the average is ten years. A consistently performed pump maintenance routine increases the likelihood of trouble-free service.
For more information, please visit us at http://www.SERVPROpuyallupsumner.com.
Understanding Ice Dams
The aesthetic pleasure of sparkling snow and crystal ice can bring its share of challenges during a Puyallup, WA, winter. Unfortunately, the beautiful appearance of icicles on your roof may be a sign of wintery damage that if left alone could lead to a hefty spring cleaning of black mold.
What Is an Ice Dam?
As warm interior temperatures rise to high areas of the roof, snow can begin to melt and create a stream of meltwater to the lower roof and gutters. The lower level of the roof and the gutters that hang off the side of the building have little access to the warm air circulation inside. Thus, a dam can be created as the meltwater hits these frozen spaces and has nowhere to divert. There are a few common signs that a dam may be forming:
• Large amounts of snow on the roof
• Significant ice blockade on the edges of the roof, gutters, or soffits
• Water damage appearing on interior ceilings or walls
What Issues May Arise?
When a blockade of ice begins forming on the edges of the roof, melting snow has nowhere to drain. The warmer temperatures of the higher levels of the roof create meltwater that ends up draining into the interior structure of the building. Insulation, ceilings, and interior walls are often impacted, potentially creating water damage that can lead to mold growth.
Can It Be Prevented?
Prevention of an ice dam requires certain measures:
• Adding insulation to ensure heat is kept away from the roof
• Verifying there is proper ventilation in roof soffits and vents
• Closing areas that may leak warm air upwards
Furthermore, maintaining clear gutters is vital to their ability to keep drainage flowing away from the roof and interior. If ice has begun forming on the edges of the building, heat tape can be used to melt it off.
Snow and ice may be inevitable in a Puyallup, WA, winter, but they needn’t be destructive. Prevent an ice dam in the winter to avoid a mold cleanup in the spring!
For more information, please visit us at http://www.SERVPROpuyallupsumner.com.
3 Steps Flood Technicians May Take To Drain Your Flooded Basement
When flooding occurs in Puyallup, WA, it can affect your home in many ways. However, one of the most common results of localized flooding is a flooded basement. While this can be a troubling issue, flood technicians from a storm cleanup and restoration company have the equipment and know-how to remove this water efficiently and safely.
1. Gauging Water Levels
When flood technicians arrive at your home, the first step they might take is to gauge the water level in your flooded basement. This can help them decide how to proceed and what type of equipment they might use to remove the water. For example, if there is more than two feet of water, the techs may need to use submersible sump pumps to drain it away.
2. Grading the Water
Grading the type of water involved in a basement flood can help flood techs set up safety measures before they start draining it. Flood waters are usually graded in three categories, with level one being clean water, as from a burst kitchen pipe. Category two is grey water, which may contain detergents or other cleaning chemicals. Outdoor flood water is usually graded as category three, or black water, as it might contain sewage runoff and other debris. This type of water will usually require the use of safety suits and other precautions that help keep the techs safe.
3. Removal of Trash
Outdoor floods can cause debris, mud and sludge to enter your basement along with the water. Flood techs may use a trash pump to drain away heavy or thick silt, as well as other types of flood waste, before the rest of the water is removed. This type of thorough cleaning can help ensure your basement’s floor is properly restored after a flood.
When your Puyallup, WA, home’s basement floods, it can be a troublesome issue that may cause damage to the room’s walls and floor. However, calling in professional flood technicians and their powerful water remediation equipment can solve the problem with efficiency.
For more information, please visit us athttp://www.SERVPROpuyallupsumner.com.
Continuing Education for Storm Certification
The IICRC Develops the Standards for The Restoration Industry
The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.
Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.
About SERVPRO of Puyallup/Sumner
SERVPRO of Puyallup/Sumner specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: from initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.
Dangers Posed by Sewer Backup
Black water can contain various types of harmful bacteria.
Even if the rest of your building has protections in place to prevent flooding, you need to be certain there are also items in place to prevent sewage from backing up into the building. Even if there does not seem to be much rain water, it only takes a little to wreak havoc within your local sewer systems.
Additionally, contact a professional water removal service to handle a backed-up sewer instead of handling the contaminated water yourself. Sewage damage should only be cleaned by a certified restoration company.
SERVPRO of Sumner/Puyallup is a locally-owned franchise with national resources that helps homeowners to overcome mold, water, and fire damage at as little cost and strain as possible. Give us a call at (253) 848-0800.
Removing Mold Odor After Water Damage
Mold growth can be a huge problem after water damage has occurred.
Whether the moisture is due to flood water, a leaky ceiling, or even sewage loss, the dampness left behind can cause mold growth to proliferate in walls, ceiling tiles, carpets, or other porous surfaces. It’s important to clean and use disinfectant on affected areas as soon as possible to eradicate mold, otherwise serious health problems can be caused by its presence. Avoid endangering your employees and customers this way by making sure the mold is dealt with appropriately by a trained professional in Lacey, Wa.
Ultimately, if you suspect mold or have noticed any strong, musky odors, you will need to have a professional service come in to inspect your property. Once the source of the problem is found, removal and remediation efforts can begin.
SERVPRO of Puyallup is a locally-owned franchise with national resources that helps homeowners to overcome mold, water, and fire damage at as little cost and strain as possible. Give us a call at (360) 438-2066.
Understanding Black Water
When flooding invades your home in Puyallup, WA the results can be devastating. After the water recedes, your first instinct may be to enter your home to survey the water damage and rescue some treasured or valued items. However, doing so can be dangerous because of contaminants in the water. Water that enters your home during flooding is black water, and it is important to understand why it should only be handled and removed by a professional flood restoration company.
Identifying Black Water
As flooding occurs, local sewage systems may back up and overflow, combining with water that is already overflowing from nearby streams or rivers. Unlike grey water, which usually drains from sinks and washing machines, black water often contains a variety of contaminants, which can include these:
• Human and animal feces
• Rotting food
Coming into contact with this type of water can pose a variety of dangers to you and your family. Because of the possible presence of many different types of bacteria, it is wise to call in a professional flood restoration company to remove any standing water in your home.
Getting Professional Removal
As a homeowner, you probably want to assess water damage as soon as possible after flooding for insurance purposes. However, even if water levels are relatively low in the interior of your home, it is a good idea to wait for a cleanup and restoration company to remove it. Flooding experts have the equipment and know-how that is necessary to safely remove contaminated water from your residence. This is important because even if you cannot see evidence of sewage in the water, it may be present and contain many harmful toxins.
When your Puyallup, WA home sustains water damage from flooding, there may be invisible dangers present from black water. This contaminated water cannot be handled in the same way as that from a backed-up dishwasher or sink. Calling in professional support can help get your home back to normal in a way that is safe and efficient.
Visit http://www.SERVPROpuyallupsumner.com for more information on storm damage.
We are an IICRC Certified Firm
We are an IICRC Certified Firm
SERVPRO of Puyallup/Sumner is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.
IICRC Certified Firms must
- Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.
- Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.
- Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.
- Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.
- Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.
How to help prevent flooding to your home in the Puyallup/Sumner area due to a storm.
According to the National Flood Insurance program flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States causing $2.7 billion in losses between 2001 and 2010. Flooding is not covered by most homeowner’s insurance policies so it may be necessary to buy a separate flood policy for your home.
Here are a couple of tips to keep water from entering your home during a heavy rain event:
1. Fix foundation leaks that may allow water to enter your home.
2. Make sure your roof is secure and protected.
3. Clear gutters and drains
If water ever floods your home, getting someone on site as soon as possible is key to keeping the amount of damage to a minimum. SERVPRO of Puyallup/Sumner is ready to respond at any time and also provides a free assessment and estimate