Recent Fire Damage Posts
HOLIDAY HOME FIRE FACTS
Fire damage during the holiday season can be a disaster. Protect your family this season by knowing the facts.
SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge is here to educate the Baton Rouge community on holiday fire damage facts.
- Nearly 47,000 fires occur during the winter holidays claiming more than 500 lives, causing more than 2,200 injuries, and costing $554 million in property damage.
- On average, one of every 22 home fires started by Christmas trees result in death.
- Candle fires are four times as likely to occur during the winter holidays.
- During the winter holiday season, an average of 40 home fires per day are caused by children playing.
- The number of home fires the American Red Cross has responded to has risen 10% since 2000.
- Having a working smoke alarm reduces one’s chances of dying in a fire by nearly half.
Space Heater Safety Tips
Fire damage from space heaters can be avoided by following basic rules.
SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish specializes in fire damage restoration. We also like to educate the public when it comes to best practices in your home or business. The following information comes from the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) organization:
Heating equipment is the second leading cause of home fires in the United States. More than 65,000 home fires are attributed to heating equipment each year. These fire result in hundreds of deaths, thousands of injuries and millions of dollars in property damage.
Portable electric space heaters can be a convenient source of supplemental heat for your home in cold weather. Unfortunately, they can pose significant fire and electric shock hazards if not used properly. Fire and electrical hazards can be caused by space heaters without adequate safety features, space heaters placed near combustibles, or space heaters that are improperly plugged in.
Safety should always be a top consideration when using space heaters. Here are some tips for keeping your home safe and warm when it’s cold outside:
- Make sure your space heater has the label showing that it is listed by a recognized testing laboratory.
- Before using any space heater, read the manufacturer’s instructions and warning labels carefully.
- Inspect heaters for cracked or broken plugs or loose connections before each use. If frayed, worn or damaged, do not use the heater.
- Never leave a space heater unattended. Turn it off when you're leaving a room or going to sleep, and don't let pets or children play too close to a space heater.
- Space heaters are only meant to provide supplemental heat and should never be used to warm bedding, cook food, dry clothing or thaw pipes.
- Install smoke alarms on every floor of your home and outside all sleeping areas and test them once a month.
- Proper placement of space heaters is critical. Heaters must be kept at least three feet away from anything that can burn, including papers, clothing and rugs.
- Locate space heaters out of high traffic areas and doorways where they may pose a tripping hazard.
- Plug space heaters directly into a wall outlet. Do not use an extension cord or power strip, which could overheat and result in a fire. Do not plug any other electrical devices into the same outlet as the heater.
- Place space heaters on level, flat surfaces. Never place heaters on cabinets, tables, furniture, or carpet, which can overheat and start a fire.
- Always unplug and safely store the heater when it is not in use.
Holiday Cooking Safety
Don't let fire damage ruin your holiday.
SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish wants you and your family to get the best holiday experience possible. Please be safe!
During the Thanksgiving holiday, many families gather in the kitchen to spend time together, but it can be one of the most hazardous rooms in your home. Before you begin your holiday meal preparations, I would like to remind everyone that cooking equipment, most often a range or stovetop, is the leading cause of reported home fires and home fire injuries in the United States. Cooking equipment is also the leading cause of unreported fires and associated injuries.
The number of cooking fires increases significantly during the holidays so it is important for you to stay alert and be watchful while you are cooking. Whether you are cooking the holiday family dinner or a leftover snack for the children, practicing these safe cooking behaviors will help protect you and your family:
- Protect Children from Scalds and Burns. Young children are at high risk of being burned by hot food and liquids. Keep children away from cooking areas by enforcing a "kid-free zone" of 3 feet around the stove.
- Watch What You’re Cooking. The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking. Stay in the kitchen when you are frying, grilling, or cooking food on the stop top or broiling food.
- Choose the Right Equipment and Use It Properly. Follow manufacturers' instructions when using cooking equipment. Remember to plug microwave ovens and other cooking appliances directly into an outlet. Never use an extension cord for a cooking appliance, as it can overload the circuit and cause a fire. Cook only with equipment designed and intended for cooking, and heat your home only with equipment designed and intended for heating.
- Avoid Using Deep Fat Turkey Fryers. The use of a deep fat turkey fryer can be very dangerous. If you do decide to use one, use it at a safe distance from buildings and other items that can catch fire. Never use a turkey fryer in a garage or on a wooden deck. Watch the fryer carefully, as the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire. To avoid oil spillover, don’t overfill the fryer. Oil-less turkey fryers are available. For more information, visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s website.
- Keep Things That Can Catch Fire and Heat Sources Apart. Keep anything that can catch fire - potholders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, towels, or curtains - away from your stovetop. Keep the stovetop, burners, and oven clean. Wear short, close-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves when cooking.
- Prevent Scalds and Burns. To prevent spills due to overturned appliances containing hot food or liquids, use the back burner when possible, and/or turn pot handles away from the stove's edge. Use oven mitts or potholders when moving hot food from ovens, microwave ovens, or stovetops.
On behalf of the staff at the U.S. Fire Administration, I want to wish you and yours a very Happy (fire and burn-free) Thanksgiving.
Fire restoration means being prepared
Smoke damage, fire damage? Call us today!
The Boy Scout motto is "Always be prepared." This could very easily be the SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish motto as well.
We take pride in keep supplies staged for fire restoration Many times, when a fire occurs in your home or business, the responding restoration company can show up without the necessary supplies to begin immediately. Not us! We keep a trailer fully stocked with everything needed to restore charring, smoke damage, discoloration, odor problems and even clean your duct system. We also are prepared to inventory the contents that got damaged in order to have them cleaned on site or off site in accordance with insurance standards.
Our trained crews make the difference between us and the competition as they are fully trained to operate the SERVPRO fire restoration systems.
Call us today and let us begin!
Developing an Action Plan
We take the time and deliver the results
When SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish gets a call to provide fire damage restoration we approach it with the understanding that each and every loss is different. With that in mind we start the assessment phase where we develop a scope and action plan.
Our team will carefully inspect each room that was affected by the fire, soot and smoke damage. This is a crucial step in the development of the plan. Without spending the proper time in the begin to understand the extent of the damage we run the risk of overlooking something.
Action plans can be the glue that keeps every body together as a group, moving in singular fashion towards a collective goal.
If you need an assessment please give us a call today.
Deodorizing after a Louisiana Fire
Make sure to get your home or business cleaned by professionals if you experience fire damage
In Louisiana we have very high levels of humidity. If you experience a fire and do not get it professional deodorized the humidity levels could exacerbate the problem. Even if you have a small fire that doesn't cause a large amount of structural damage the soot that travels through the house and settles on surfaces could be pulled out as the summer approaches. As the humidity levels increase so will latent smells. SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish understands this, which is why we encourage home owners or business owners to ask questions regarding the process. Make sure you are getting the treatment you deserve before the summer months arrive and you discover you didn't.
If you have any questions please call us.
Smells can linger if not handled properly
When your home or business experiences a fire the damage can be overwhelming. The obvious damage is usually structural with your contents and belongings coming in second. Often times odor control is overlooked. It shouldn't be. Odor control is a lingering threat to, not only, your sense of smell, but also your health. It can accost your senses every time you enter your home or business. Once you have become acclimated you may not smell it as bad but that isn't because it's suddenly gone. SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish uses state of the art equipment plus good ole fashion elbow grease to ensure that your home or business has been restored to preloss conditions.
SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish is the community's number fire restoration company. We do it all in accordance with industry and insurance standards. Give us a call to schedule an appointment or if you have any questions or concerns.
Don't let your belongings be an after thought
Fire damage to a home or business is extremely devastating and can send you into a crisis of priorities. Typically, your primary focus is on your largest asset, your home; and rightfully so. We work our whole lives to pay a mortgage so that we can live in a house. It is priority number one!
Once SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge is on the scene to begin fire restoration on your home we encourage you to focus of your contents, or belongings. These cherished items can usually be restored or replaced. With your help our crews do an inventory list that we share with the insurance company. This helps you, us and the insurance company to appropriately reimburse you for the necessary repairs or replacement value of your fire damaged items.
SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge is HERE TO HELP!
Protecting you and your family from fire
Anytime a fire occurs in Baton Rouge, LA, there's always cause for concern. There are four key fire preparation and fire safety measures that you should implement.
1. Install Smoke Alarms
Generally, the most important measure you can take is to have smoke alarms installed in your home. Alarms can serve as an early warning system. Place a smoke alarm on every level of your home and inside and outside each bedroom.
2. Maintain Your Smoke Alarms
Alarms are worthless if they aren’t working. As part of your fire preparation, replace the batteries once a year. Test your smoke alarms every month, and change batteries as needed. Make sure everyone knows the alarm sound and what to do if they hear it.
3. Establish Fire-Safe Habits
Make yours a smoke-free home. If you smoke, do so outside. Never smoke in bed or when impaired in any manner. Dispose of ashes and butts with water.
Do not ever leave burning candles unattended. Keep flammable items at least three feet away from space heaters or anything hot. Turn off portable heaters when you go to sleep or leave the room.
4. Have a Fire Safety Plan
Prepare a diagram of your home, and show each family member two ways to escape from each room. In the event of fire or an alarm, get low, go and stay out. Establish a family meeting spot outside your home away from the house. Additionally, specify one emergency contact for family members to contact if they are unable to locate other family members following a home fire.
Practice fire drills twice a year. Press the test button on your smoke alarm, and everyone should leave your home and go to the meeting spot.
Fire preparation is important for you and your family. If you have a fire, contact your SERVPRO professional for help.
Protecting yourself from electrical fires
Electrical fires cause millions of dollars in damages, while also claiming lives in the process. There are so many possible causes for these types of fires. One of these causes can be faulty wiring through out the house, and overloading connection for more than they were designed for. Improper use of extension cords and power strips can cause a situation. Even something as simple as small animals chewing through wiring in the wall can cause a fire.
You can prevent electrical fires in your Baton Rouge, LA home by following a few safety tips. When purchasing a used heating appliance, make sure the temperature switch will shut down the equipment if the thermostat fails. When doing duct work, make sure you use a licensed professional. Anywhere there is an electric current, there is a chance of a fire. By the time you see or smell smoke, the electrical fire may already be out of control. SERVPRO Central East Baton Rouge Parish wants you to stay safe and take action immediately to repair and replace faulty wiring in your home to reduce the risk of an unwarranted situation. Know the signs before the fire even starts.
The most common causes of home fires
Fires contribute to millions of dollars’ worth of property damage each year in South Louisiana. Knowing the most common causes of household fires can help your family better prevent these types of damages in your home. According to the NFPA, the leading causes of fires in homes from 2010-2014 were:
- Cooking Equipment - 46% of all fires
- Heating Equipment - 16%
- Electrical Equipment - 9%
- Intentional - 8%
- Smoking Materials - 5%
Almost half of all home fires result from cooking. While that number is concerning, many cooking fires can be prevented through general awareness and by following proper procedures. This is particularly important with the holidays coming up. Here are some tips to help you prevent a fire damage from occurring in your kitchen:
- Never leave your cooking food unattended, especially if you are broiling, frying, or grilling. Use a timer to remind you when you are using a stove or an oven.
- Avoid leaving anything flammable – such as oven mitts, plastic bags, paper towels, or pot holders - close to your stove or oven. You should also not cook when you are wearing loose clothing.
- Install a fire alarm close to your kitchen, and be sure to test it each month.
- Avoid a flammable grease buildup by cleaning regularly, particularly in the oven and on the stove.
- Turn off all cooking appliances when you are not using them, and double check the kitchen prior to going to bed to make sure everything is off.
- To be prepared for any cooking related fires, buy a Class K fire extinguisher to keep in your kitchen.
Call SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish for additional information.
Pet Safety Awareness in your Home
These homeowners encountered a kitchen fire caused by a damaged electrical cord. And the culprit... their furry feline "Sazzy".
To all pet owners out there, our little "furry babies" have a tendency to crave a late night snack as we do. But their apatite for electrical cords can cause some unexpected problems in our homes. Systematically checking all power cords in your home can lower your risk of an electrical fire substantially. If you find any damage, throw it out immediately! And as aways, make sure your smoke detectors are properly maintained and working. Thankfully, this home owner was able to extinguish this fire quickly due to the smoke alarm. Within the hour, SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge Parish was on site and eager to get these folks back in their home.