Recent Storm Damage Posts

5 Essential Items to Have During an Emergency

12/7/2022 (Permalink)

Kit supplies Create an emergency kit for yourself and your family.

How To Prepare For An Emergency

You are reading this article because you want to know what essential items you should have on hand in case of an emergency. That's a good place to start. But it's also important to remember that emergencies don't always happen at convenient times or places—and they affect more than just your home and immediate family. So, think about how you can best prepare for an emergency by creating an emergency kit for yourself and your family, including pets if possible!

Food and Water

Food and water are essential to survival. It's best to store at least 72 hours worth of food and water per person, but if you can afford it, go ahead and stock up on more. This is especially important if you have children or elderly family members as well as pets or other animals—you should be prepared for them too!

Clothing and Bedding

Clothing should be comfortable, versatile and easy to put on. Bring layered clothing that will protect you from the elements, rather than just one or two pieces of clothing that you would need to change into if your home were to become inaccessible due to flooding or fire. Include shoes and socks so that the entire family has something warm with which to walk if necessary. A hat and gloves are also important because they can help keep your head warm in cold temperatures or protect it from sunburn on sunny days when there's no shade available for protection.

First-Aid Supplies

As you plan for an emergency, it’s important to be prepared with the right first-aid supplies. This can include a first-aid kit and other life-saving items such as bandages, tape, scissors, gauze pads and more. A basic kit should contain:

  • Bandages of different sizes
  • Adhesive tape in several widths
  • Scissors for cutting the tape or fabric bandages
  • Sterile pads like gauze dressing pads or sterile eye pad strips (for covering wounds on your face)
  • Nonadherent dressings (these are adhesive dressings that do not stick to skin)

Tools and Emergency Supplies

Have a fire extinguisher and make sure that it is in working order. You can buy an inexpensive one at your local hardware store, or you could get one of the more expensive models that can be used on all kinds of fires.

If there is a fire, you should also have items for getting out of your house if necessary. This might include a flashlight and extra batteries for it, along with rope or string so you can make a rope ladder from the roof to the ground if needed. You may also want to have a first aid kit with some basic supplies like bandages and antibiotic ointment in case someone gets injured during an evacuation due to smoke inhalation or other problems caused by the fire itself (such as burns).

It's also important to keep extra batteries for any electronic devices such as phones or tablets because they may not work after an emergency situation due to power loss or network coverage issues caused by damage done during disasters such as floods or earthquakes."

Special Items

If you have a household member who requires special items during an emergency, be sure to include them in your kit. It’s important to keep medications on hand at all times, but in an emergency situation where there may not be accessible to a pharmacy or doctor, it’s more crucial than ever. In addition to medications for chronic conditions such as asthma and diabetes, having basic first aid supplies can make life much easier for those with special needs. If you have someone with limited mobility or sight (for example), the ability to move around independently might be even more important than usual.

Also consider including items that are necessary for children: diapers, formula, and baby food if applicable; blankets; books; games and activities that require little set-up time (think travel versions of popular board games). Make sure these are already packed before any kind of situation arises so everyone can focus on whatever crisis is happening outside their home instead of worrying about making sure they have everything they need inside their house too!"

Create a Disaster Plan

The more prepared you are, the greater chance you have of making it through an emergency unscathed. If you’re part of a larger community—for example, if there is an office or school nearby—you may also want to work together on creating a shared disaster plan.

The goods included in this kit will vary depending on what type of emergency it is that's being faced, but all essentials should be portable and easy to carry around with you if necessary (though not too heavy). Remember: food and water are vital!

If your home were hit by a natural disaster like fire or flooding, how would you take care of yourself? Can someone else take care of themselves? When the electricity goes out during a storm or earthquake, how do you cook food so everyone stays healthy?

A disaster can happen at any time, but you’ll be prepared if you have the right supplies on hand. As we know from experience, being prepared with a plan and supplies is essential to keeping your family safe during an emergency. We hope this article has given you some ideas about what to include in your own emergency kit so that everyone in your household is ready for anything life throws their way!

If your home or business is struck by fire, water, or storm, SERVPRO of Central East Baton Rouge is here to help you restore your Baton Rouge property back to its preloss condition. 

How Does One File a Flood Claim Safely and Accurately?

7/20/2022 (Permalink)

Filling out a form Complete your flood claim as thoroughly as possible

If your house in Zachary, LA, ever becomes flooded, you need to complete your flood claim as thoroughly as possible. Taking proper stock of the damage your home has suffered means an insurer is less likely to issue a denial.

Staying Safe

When conducting your assessment, it’s crucial that you minimize danger:

Always wear protection such as respirators, knee-high boots, and rubber gloves. You never want to risk exposing yourself to mold caused by the flooding.
Beware of potential electrical damage. Use only battery-powered sources for illumination to avert a nasty shock.
As much as possible, avoid entering floodwater. It may have become contaminated with gasoline or raw sewage.
Keep an eye out for critters. Snakes or insects might have washed into your home, so beware.

Remember that remaining out of harm’s way always comes first.

Making Your Claim
First, notify your insurer to begin the flood claim process. Next, take stock of the damage. This is the most important aspect of your insurance claim, as you need proof behind every piece of observable devastation. Maintain a detailed inventory of everything and take extensive photos. Never throw anything away, just in case you need to provide evidence.
Deploy action before an adjuster gets in touch; you can significantly speed up the claims process by handling matters ahead of time. Arrange your home so the adjuster may easily view every element of destruction. Also, post your contact information in a clearly visible spot so the adjuster can get in touch if questions arise. Once you have completed a Proof of Loss and received payment, you will then be free to reach out to a home repair expert that can return your residence to its previous state, making it look "Like it never even happened."
Inventorying a flood claim can be a challenge, but keep in mind that handling the matter properly means safety as well as proper compensation for any costs you have unfortunately incurred.

3 Steps To Take After A Sewage Backup

6/18/2022 (Permalink)

Man using sewer inspection camera Plumbers will use a specialized camera that they place into the pipes and can locate the problem in the area.

Three Steps To Take After A Sewage Backup

Whether you have a clogged main sewage pipe or your sewer system gets overwhelmed after a severe storm with significant floods, you could face a sewage backup. When that happens to your Monticello, LA, home, you need to know what to do to keep your family safe. Here are three steps to take after a sewage backup.

1. Call a Plumber To Determine Why the Sewer Backup is Happening
When you find a sewage backup in your home, you first want to call a plumber to determine why the sewer system has backed up. The plumber will use a specialized camera that they place into the pipes and can use to locate problem areas. If you have a clog, they will clear the clog at that time. If your system was overwhelmed by heavy rainwaters, you'll need your system pumped to prevent further problems.

2. Determine if the Area is Safe to Go Into
When dealing with a sewer backup, it's essential to evaluate the situation before you attempt to start cleaning up. If your problem is limited to a simple bathtub backup, you'll be fine to handle things yourself. Ensure that you use protective equipment and a bleach-water solution to clean and sanitize your bathtub. However, if the sewage spill is more widespread, always err on the side of caution and contact a water damage restoration company to clean up for you. The longer the sewage sits, the more widespread the damage will be, so contact a company as soon as possible.

3. Stop it From Happening Again
Regular maintenance of your system is vital to help prevent a sewer backup. Have a plumber scope your pipes and remove any buildups or clogs every year. If you have a septic system, ensure that you keep your gutters clean of debris to avoid flooding your drain field, which could cause your septic system to get overwhelmed.
Dealing with a sewage backup can be a stressful situation. However, following a few simple steps and relying on the pros will help you get your house back to normal in no time.

After a Flood: The Do’s and Don’ts

6/3/2022 (Permalink)

Flood water in a home level of water reaches the stairs Flood damage in a home in Zachary, LA.

The Do's and Don'ts After a Flood

After a severe storm ravages Zachary, LA, safety should also come first. While you may be eager to determine the amount of damage your home has received from flood water, wind and other issues, some key things should and shouldn’t be done.

Flooded Home Do’s
If your home has sustained significant flooding, it is best to evacuate and not re-enter until it is deemed safe by the professionals. Once you have been given the go-ahead to re-enter, below are a few steps that should be taken next:

Document the damage for your insurance company. This includes taking videos and pictures, as well as retrieving important documents.
Any food, medicine or other consumables that have been touched by flood water should be discarded.
Verify that water is safe before drinking. If you are not certain, boil it beforehand.
Open doors and windows to get enhanced airflow.
Avoid using any electrical equipment that could have sustained damage.
If possible, begin extracting water and drying out affected areas.

Water Damage Don’ts
Knowing that safety is of the essence, avoid just imping in and tackling the water issues. If there is extensive water in the home, it is best to contact a certified mold, water and storm damage restoration company for an assessment and to handle the cleanup process. Stormwater often means that there are potential toxins, contaminants, microorganisms and other substances that will require specific safety gear and industrial-grade equipment. Water may also be lurking in hidden areas. Even if you think you have cleaned up a small issue, there could be mold starting to grow out of sight. When getting your home back to preloss condition is the priority, it’s best to let the experts handle the mess.
After the flood water starts to go down, it’s easy to want to rush in and start the cleaning process. Keeping safety in mind and following the above tips helps ensure the cleanup process goes safely and smoothly.

4 Tips for Preparing Your Business's Exterior for Storms

4/23/2022 (Permalink)

Hand with a glove cleaning a clogged gutter Keep your gutters clean.

Four Storm-Proofing Tips for Your Business's Exterior

Your commercial business insurance and relevant riders are all lined up to carefully cover your company for this year's stormy season in Zachary, LA. Your employees are knowledgeable about all of your safety protocols, and you've inspected the interior of your site for vulnerabilities and moved all important documentation out of potential flood zones. How about exterior maintenance? While it might feel like a lost cause to try and perform any repairs or make improvements when big storms are imminent, protecting your building from the outside can make a big difference in how well it withstands a storm's lashing. Here are four tips.

1. Secure Loose Objects

Complete a thorough exterior building inspection, starting with loose objects that could be tossed by winds and cause more damage. Antennas, trash cans, hanging signs, and benches could all become projectiles that damage your building. Secure them outside or bring them indoors.

2. Protect All Glass

From individual windows to large glass storefronts, protect your business by using storm shutters. There are many types available at various price points. At the very least, use duct tape over the glass to prevent shattering.

3. Clean Out Downspouts

Cleaning downspouts, gutters, and drains is probably a part of your regular exterior maintenance routine, but going over them an extra time right before a big storm ensures that water can drain away from the building properly.

4. Look for Entry Points

Keeping your building maintained regularly ensures that you don't have huge repair projects right before a storm. Check the roof, windows, doors, and foundation for any possible points of entry for water. Plus, if you do have to call a water damage restoration company to help clean up after a storm, you can be sure that the damage was a result of the storm and not poor maintenance.
Exterior maintenance of your building is an important part of your storm preparedness plan.

Protecting Your Business From Flood Damage

4/5/2022 (Permalink)

Sealants on a table. You can also help protect yourself by sealing any cracks in the outside of your building.

Flood Damage Protection for Your Business

If you own a business, you know you need to protect your building from flood damage. Fortunately, there are a few ways that you can do this in Baton Rouge, LA.

Have a Plan

One of the most important ways you can protect your business from a flood is to have a clear plan for what happens if it is going to flood. This plan should:

  • Be comprehensive
  • Encompass before and after the flood
  • Have vital information on what to do

Keep your flood plan on-hand or in an accessible place.

Keep Vital Information On-Hand

You will need to keep important information like insurance policies and the number of a storm damage remediation company in a separate location. This can help you get things started even before the floodwaters recede.

Prepare for Flooding

You can prepare for flooding by keeping some flood supplies on hand. You can easily store absorbant flood barriers and plastic sheeting.

Keep Electricity Away From Water

Whenever possible, move your electrical outlets to water safe heights. You should also keep all electronics like computers and printers off the floor. If it is safe and you suspect that it might flood, consider shutting down the power to any electronics and unplugging them. This will help to protect them against flood damage.

Use Flood-Resistant Landscaping and Materials

If you have the choice, choose flood-resistant materials to decorate your office. Most of these materials can survive around 72 hours in the event of a flood. This can save you time and money when you want to return to normal business operations.
Decorate your premises with native landscaping. Native plants help provide a barrier and can survive a flood if it is something normal for your area.

Seal the Cracks

By using water-resistant materials, you can also help protect yourself by sealing any cracks in the outside of your building. This will keep water from seeping in.
Protecting yourself against flood damage is important in all areas. If you follow these suggestions, they can help you get back to business faster.