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A Storm During a Pandemic? How to Be Safe (Part 2: Evacuating Your Home)

9/21/2020 (Permalink)

A house is surrounded by floodwaters Evacuating your home after a storm disaster is hard enough. In a pandemic, you'll need to take some extra steps to stay safe.

This year, if you need to evacuate your home during a hurricane or other natural disaster, you’ll need to take extra precautions to protect you and your family from a viral pathogen. Leaving your home in the midst of a storm and accompanying power outage puts you at greater risk of exposure to illness, so you’ll need to take extra care. SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield recommends you review your existing plans for evacuating safely and modify them to include protection against a pathogen.

(Read Part 1 of this article for ways to stay safe at home when a powerful storm hits during a pandemic.)

According to the American Red Cross, you should have on hand two kits of emergency supplies, one for sheltering at home and another for evacuating.

Prepare a Three-Day Evacuation Kit

Your pandemic-era evacuation supply kit should be a smaller, portable version of your stay-at-home kit—you’ll want to be able to grab it quickly as you leave your home. Include three days worth of the supplies you and your family will need:

  • shelf-stable food and snacks
  • water (1 gallon per person per day)
  • personal hygiene items
  • prescription and over-the-counter medications (up to a two-week supply stored separately in an easy-to-carry bag)
  • cleaning and disinfectant supplies, such as tissues, hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes
  • at least 3 face masks for everyone in your household

Find Safe Harbor in a Pandemic

Finding a safe place to shelter in a pandemic is more complicated than at other times. Start by learning if your local emergency management agency has revised its sheltering guidance to reflect pandemic-related executive orders.

To maintain a safe distance from other evacuees, large group shelters like school gymnasiums are no longer the first option, although a large-scale evacuation may require their use. The Red Cross recommends that you stay in individual hotel or dormitory-style rooms instead. It’s a good idea, if you know a storm is on the way, to call hotels, motels or even campgrounds to determine availability.

Another option is to contact family and friends outside the storm-affected area to see if you can stay with them. Of course, you and your family or friends must take appropriate precautions. You’ll have to quarantine in a separate room if you or the people you are staying with have been recently exposed to a virus or are showing symptoms.

If you and your family do take shelter at a larger group shelter, be prepared for:

  • a health screening
  • wellness checks, including self-monitoring and temperature checks
  • an isolation area for anyone who shows symptoms of infection
  • required face masks
  • staggered meal times
  • extra space between cots, chairs and tables
  • requirements for frequent hand washing
  • more frequent and thorough cleaning and disinfecting 

If your home or business suffers damage from a windstorm or other natural disaster, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

We’re Here for You

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in natural disaster and storm damage cleanup, water damage remediation, fire restoration services and chemical cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO publishes educational articles on how you can protect your home and business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If your home or business suffers damage from a windstorm or other natural disaster, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

A Storm During a Pandemic? How to Be Safe (Part 1: Sheltering at Home)

9/18/2020 (Permalink)

Satellite view of a hurricane If a storm is on the way during a pandemic, you'll need to adjust your preparation plans to keep your family safe at home.

As we live through an unprecedented pandemic, Americans have had to figure out different ways to do business, school our children, shop for food and so much more. It’s essential that you know how to keep your family safe during a pandemic if a hurricane, tornado or other powerful storm is bearing down on your home.

As always, SERVPRO advises that you batten down your home to minimize storm damage; have on hand a two-week supply of shelf-stable food, water and essentials, such as necessary medications and other important items; and pack an easy-to-carry bag of supplies, clothing and other items to take if you need to evacuate.

But in a pandemic, especially if you evacuate, you also face the prospect of exposing yourself to the pathogen. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), your shelter and evacuation plans should take into account this risk. The American Red Cross also advises that you revise your emergency plans. One of the Red Cross’s key recommendations is to gather your supplies as soon as you can—you want to avoid both shortages and crowded stores in a pandemic.

Your Shelter-at-Home Kit

Set aside enough stay-at-home supplies to last you and your family at least two weeks, including:

  • a supply of shelf-stable, nutrition-rich food
  • sufficient bottled water for each family member
  • personal hygiene items, including soap and paper products
  • cleaning and disinfectant supplies
  • face masks for all family members

Assemble and keep current a one-month supply of the prescription and over-the-counter medications you and your family will need. Store these meds in an easy-to-grab go-bag.

After a powerful hurricane or other storm, you may not have electricity for days or even weeks. Be sure to have a supply of flashlights, lanterns and fresh batteries; avoid using candles. If you own a portable generator, inspect it before the storm, make any repairs necessary and purchase sufficient gasoline. Locate the generator at least of 20 feet away from your home and aim the exhaust vent away from windows or doors.

Part 2 of this article will detail what you need to do to prepare to evacuate during a pandemic.

If your home or business suffers damage from a windstorm or other natural disaster, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

We’re Here for You

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in natural disaster and storm damage cleanup, water damage remediation, fire restoration services and chemical cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO publishes educational articles on how you can protect your home and business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If your home or business suffers damage from a windstorm or other natural disaster, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

Be Safe After a Flood

8/28/2020 (Permalink)

A house surrounded by floodwater Beyond causing damage to your home and property, a flood also creates many dangers that lurk in the floodwater. Stay safe with our tips.

Hurricanes and other storms can cause floods that span communities and even regions. After the storm, you will likely be eager to begin the cleanup and restoration of your home and other property, but know that while the storm may have passed, the danger of flood damage remains. Floodwaters can hide all manner of risky objects and substances.

Know the Dangers That Lurk

The floodwater itself will be far from pristine. Chemicals and random objects will have been swept into the water, so you must take extreme caution when entering floodwater.

Electrical Hazards

Thanks to the strong winds that accompany hurricanes and other powerful storms, electric lines are often lying on the ground or beneath floodwater. Walking or driving through flooded areas puts you at risk for electrocution. Avoid approaching any downed power lines that you can see. Keep away from the water and report the downed line to local authorities.

Because the floodwater may have damaged your home’s electrical system, you should have the system checked by an electrician before turning on lights or running electrical appliances.

Debris

As floodwaters rush down hills and through communities, they pick up objects, such as tree branches, metal objects—just about anything that’s not too heavy—and sweep them along. These random items can be sharp enough to gash you, so wear sturdy rubber boots, gloves and eye protection if you have to walk through floodwater.

Critters

Another reason for caution around floodwaters is that they quickly become a home to animals such as snakes and rodents. Even smaller pools of standing water can harbor lots of disease-causing mosquitoes, so empty out buckets, pools and gutters.

Chemicals and Waste Contamination

Frankly, floodwaters are often filthy, with sewage, oil and chemicals mixed into the brew. Avoid acquiring infections, gastrointestinal illnesses and rashes by staying out of the water, or if you have to wade through, gearing up with boots, gloves and goggles. And don’t use your home’s water supply to drink, cook or bathe until it’s been tested for safety.

Post-Flood Cleanup Safety Tips

As you begin the overwhelming task of cleaning up after a flood, follow some basic guidelines to avoid injury and illness.

Prevent Injury

  • If you receive a cut, puncture or other wound while you’re cleaning up, drop everything and seek medical attention.
  • Don’t expose wounds to floodwater. Clean the wound frequently with soap and water, and change the dressing often. If your wound becomes reddened, painful, swollen or oozes pus, or you develop a high fever, seek immediate medical attention.

Prevent Illness

  • It’s so basic, but wash your hands frequently with soap and clean water. Do not eat or drink without washing up first.
  • At day’s end, wash clothing that has been in floodwater separately from your other clothing.

We’re Here for You

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in water damage remediation, fire restoration services, natural disaster prevention, chemical cleanup, and natural disaster cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

If your home or business suffers a flood or other water damage, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836 for immediate expert water damage cleanup

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO publishes educational articles on how to protect your home or business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield

53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If your home or business suffers a flood or other water damage, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836 for immediate expert water damage cleanup

Have a Plan to Help Your Business Survive a Disaster

8/21/2020 (Permalink)

Flood water covers a warehouse floor Nearly half of companies that suffer a natural, man-made or technology disaster end up going out of business. Have a plan to survive the disaster.

Natural, man-made and technology disasters often happen without notice, leaving you scrambling to restore business operations. (Natural disasters include floods, fires, biohazard contamination, hurricanes, tornadoes, blizzards and other storms, while man-made disasters include accidents and acts of violence or terrorism, and technology disasters hazards include system, equipment or software failure or malfunction.)

Once the disaster has occurred, then what? More than 50% of all businesses close their doors. Help your business survive a disaster with an emergency preparedness plan. The no-cost Business Ready Plan lays out—step by step—what you need to do to quickly resume operations and save your business.

A Comprehensive Plan to Restore Your Business Operations

The Business Ready Plan is a clearly spelled-out plan of action that will help you minimize business interruption after a disaster: what to do, how to do it, how to make critical decisions, who to call on for help and how to communicate all of this to employees and resources. To create your unique plan, the Business Ready Plan experts will:

  • Evaluate your facility and normal business operations.
  • Draft a Profile Document that contains the most critical information needed to respond to an emergency.
  • Create a step-by-step plan to help you restore operations following a disaster.
  • Identify your preferred disaster cleanup and restoration provider before a disaster happens, to save you valuable time after the damage is done.
  • Develop and communicate the hierarchy of individuals who will make decisions and authorize work.
  • List key facility specifications, including location of shut-off valves, details of mechanical systems and areas of the building to be restored most rapidly.

Our Partners for Cleanup and Restoration

Business Ready Plan partners with established local pros to complete the job of returning your business to full operation. These reliable experts will mitigate the damage to your facility and restore it to its before-disaster condition.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield specializes in commercial property damage cleanup, with deep experience in cleanup of fire and water damage (including electronics restoration and document drying), and mold mitigation and removal. For large commercial disaster recovery projects, we call on SERVPRO’s Large Loss Division.

SANTE Property Damage Restoration are experts in restoring property after a disaster. They respond quickly to evaluate the damage and protect your building from further damage or intrusions. SANTE then restores your building to its preloss state, returning you to full operability.

Minimize business interruption and maximize your odds for survival with a Business Ready Plan. Be ready for the unexpected by calling (800) 345-4552 for your FREE Business Ready Plan.

If your business is hit by a natural disaster, like a flood, wind storm or wildfire, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield at 860.649.0836

Help Is Here

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in water damage restoration services, fire and smoke damage restoration services, biohazard cleanup and natural disaster prevention and cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield publishes educational articles on how you can protect your home and business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

We’re Here for You

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If your business is hit by a natural disaster, like a flood, wind storm or wildfire, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield at 860.649.0836

Protect Your Devices in a Thunderstorm

7/14/2020 (Permalink)

An electrical outlet on a green wall Some low-tech, old-school steps can protect your most high-tech home devices from a thunderstorm's fury.

A big thunderstorm, packed with lightning, wind and rain, can do a lot of damage to your home, including starting a fire or knocking a tree onto your roof. While these are some of the obvious risks of a storm, there’s another kind of damage that deserves your attention: a powerful lightning strike that could destroy the high-tech gear inside your home, including TVs, computers, routers, modems, smart devices, and more.

If a bolt of lightning strikes a nearby electrical pole, the resulting power surge can ruin all of your electrical devices. A little preparation before the storm, however, can vastly reduce the chance for that kind of storm damage—and will cost much less than replacing all of your electronics after a storm!

Unplug Your Devices

It’s almost too obvious, but the easiest and most effective way to prevent lightning-induced damage to your tech devices is to unplug everything you can before the storm hits. Go from room to room and pull cords out of outlets. It’s a small hassle—after the storm passes, you’ll have to plug everything back in and reset some of your devices—but if your electronics aren’t receiving any power, they cannot be damaged by a surge.

(One exception to this may be your WiFi router—if that’s your only way to connect to the internet. You may need to get up-to-date forecasts and information to stay safe during a severe storm, so weigh that necessity against the cost of a new router.)

Tip: If you’re going on an extended trip, you’ll want to unplug all your devices before leaving.

Use Low Tech to Protect High Tech

Used for centuries, lightning rods are metal poles that you attach to your roof to keep lightning from striking more vulnerable parts of your home. This old-but-good technology remains an effective way to protect a home—and lightning rods don’t just keep lightning from making a direct hit on your house. They also draw the lightning away from nearby power lines and light poles, reducing the chances for a power surge. Putting a lightning rod on top of your home might seem old-fashioned, but it could save your high tech equipment.

Sorry, But Your Surge Protector May Not Save You

Surge protectors are great at protecting your electrical devices from minor power spikes. Unfortunately, most surge protectors can only handle surges up to around 4,000 joules—and the average lightning strike rings in at around 1,000,000,000 joules! No surge protector can handle an electrical strike that is more than 250,000 times more powerful than what is rated for.

Don’t get rid of your surge protectors just yet, though. Surge protectors still offer protection from distant lightning strikes and everyday power surges, so they are a worthwhile investment.

If your home or business suffers damage from a windstorm or other natural disaster, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

We’re Here for You

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in natural disaster and storm damage cleanup, water damage remediation, fire restoration services and chemical cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO publishes educational articles on how you can protect your home and business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If your home or business suffers damage from a windstorm or other natural disaster, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

Prevent a Fire at Your Small Business

7/10/2020 (Permalink)

A burned desktop computer and monitor Learn where and how commercial fires often start—and the common-sense steps you can take to prevent one at your small business.

In the hot and dry summertime, many business owners have good reason to be concerned about the risk of wildfires. The truth is, though, that a fire of any size or origin can interrupt your business, and if not caught and extinguished quickly, can be devastating not just to your property, but to the survival of your business.

According to a 2018 report from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), nonresidential buildings have experienced a 5% increase in fires over the last decade, resulting in a 36% growth in claims.

Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield, a professional disaster recovery company, to help you recover quickly and completely if a fire strikes your small business. We also are experts in remediating the water and smoke damage that often accompanies a fire.

Fire Prevention 101

Follow these basic fire prevention steps, just as you would at your home.

  • Equip your building with smoke detectors and fire extinguishers as required by local and state regulations.
  • Test detectors and extinguishers regularly, change batteries annually and replace equipment if it is defective or approaching its end of life.
  • Set up evacuation procedures, communicate them and hold regular emergency drills.

Why and Where Do Small Business Fires Start?

According to the National Fire Protection Association, these are the most common sources of commercial property fires—and steps you can take to help prevent them.

Cooking Equipment (29%)

  • Clean office kitchen areas daily.
  • Prohibit the use of hot plates.
  • Have stoves, ovens and other cooking equipment serviced at least annually by a qualified technician.      

Electrical Equipment (12%)

  • Move combustible materials, such as trash cans, paper and cardboard boxes, away from outlets, panel boxes or other heat-producing electrical equipment.
  • Regularly inspect appliance cords and check light fixtures, bulbs and displays for visible signs for damage.
  • Do not use extension cords unless absolutely necessary.

Heating Equipment (11%)

  • Have heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment serviced by a qualified technician at least annually and before each seasonal startup.
  • Never use portable space heaters.
  • Keep combustible materials at least three feet from boilers, furnaces and other heating units.

Arson (10%)

  • Establish a security program that controls access to your building. Add regular guard tours if appropriate for your facility.
  • Adequately light all areas of the property, including parking lots and garages.

Smoking (5%)

  • Prohibit smoking in the building.
  • Place non-combustible containers outside entranceways for disposal of smoking materials.
  • Install smoke detection equipment in areas that may be used for unauthorized smoking, such as bathrooms and closets.

If your business is hit by a natural disaster, like a flood, wind storm or wildfire, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield at 860.649.0836

Help Is Here

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in water damage restoration services, fire and smoke damage restoration services, biohazard cleanup and natural disaster prevention and cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield publishes educational articles on how you can protect your home and business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

We’re Here for You

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If your business is hit by a natural disaster, like a flood, wind storm or wildfire, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield at 860.649.0836

Be Ready for a Storm Before It Hits

6/26/2020 (Permalink)

A house in a thunderstorm A summer storm—hurricane, tornado or thunderstorm—can knock out your power and severely damage your house. Do these five things to prepare now!

Any time of the year is a bad time to get hit by a storm that can damage your home or knock out your power. Summer storms—such as hurricanes, tornadoes and powerful thunderstorms—can be a real challenge if you’re not ready for them. You and your family will weather the storm much more easily and safely if you prepare by having some key supplies on hand well before you need them.

1. Food & Water

Make it a practice to keep a two-week supply of nonperishable food and water on hand. Foods, such as canned and boxed food and other staples, should be high in calories and nutrition and not require refrigeration, water or special preparation. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recommends having at least one gallon of water per day for each member of your family. Store your food and water in a cool, dry and dark place. Periodically, check the expiration dates and discard and replace expired items. If you have a pet, store a two-week supply of your pet’s food, too.

2. Lights & Electronics

Summer storms are notorious for causing power outages. If your power fails, you’ll want lighting and a way to power your phone or other electronic device. Keep on hand several flashlights and a compact lantern—as well as a supply of batteries. When you know a storm is on the way, fully charge your phone and devices—and if you have one or more power banks, charge them up, too.

3. First Aid Kit

If you suffer minor injuries during or after a big storm, you may not be able to call on busy first responders for help. Be prepared to handle basic medical care on your own with a first-aid kit that includes bandages, gauze, a cold compress, scissors, tweezers, a seven-day supply of necessary medications and more. Store these essentials in a portable carrying case so you can grab and go if you need to.

4. Documents & Records

You may have to evacuate your home or deal with insurance claims after a storm. Gather your important identification papers and other documents, such as birth certificates, Social Security cards, marriage certificates, adoption papers, passports, naturalization documents, wills, living wills, powers of attorney and property deeds/titles. Store everything in a portable waterproof, fire-safe security chest. If there’s room, include important DVDs, portable disks and flash drives, too.

5. Cash & Gas

You should always have a supply of cash tucked away at home for an emergency. (If you have the means, build up a separate supply of easily-accessible funds that you can tap after a storm disaster to cover sudden expenses.) Gas up your vehicles before the storm hits to avoid long lines and the possibility of a gas shortage.

Just a few hours of preparation, long before the clouds arrive, will help you and your family stay safe and comfortable through a hurricane, tornado or severe thunderstorm and its storm disaster aftermath.

If your home or business suffers damage from a windstorm or other natural disaster, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

We’re Here for You

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in natural disaster and storm damage cleanup, water damage remediation, fire restoration services and chemical cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO publishes educational articles on how you can protect your home and business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If your home or business suffers damage from a windstorm or other natural disaster, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

Summer Fire Safety (Part 1: Grilling)

6/25/2020 (Permalink)

Burgers cooking on a gas grill Make sure your food's well done, not your house! Pay attention to grill safety precautions to prevent a fire that could jump to your home.

Summer is the time of the year for outdoor parties and celebrations, but it also carries increased risk of house fires started by outdoor cooking, fire pits and campfires. Part 1 of this article will give you important safety guidelines for grilling food outdoors.

  • Gas grills cause almost 9,000 structure and outdoor fires each year in the U.S.
  • An average of more than 18,000 Americans are injured each year by grill fires.
  • 97 percent of grill fires occur between May and August.

General Grill Safety

  • Only use propane and charcoal grills outdoors. This will minimize the risk of fire and exposure to toxic gases and potential asphyxiation.
  • Position the grill several feet away from house siding and deck railings. Don’t locate it under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Place the grill a safe distance from lawn games, play areas and foot traffic. Keep children and pets from the grill area by creating a three-foot safety zone around the grill.
  • Use long-handled barbecue tools. Wear short sleeves or roll them up when cooking on the grill.
  • Periodically clean out the grease or fat that has built up in trays below the grill.
  • Keep a bucket of water near your grill.

Charcoal Grills

  • At the start of grilling season, make sure your grill is clean and free of ash and grease.
  • Purchase the appropriate starter fluid and store it out of reach of children and away from heat sources. Never use any flammable or combustible liquid other than charcoal starter fluid.
  • Never add charcoal starter fluid after coals or kindling have been ignited.

Propane Gas Grills

  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to set up the grill and maintain it.
  • At the start of grilling season, check the burners for clogs, make sure all hoses and connections are secure, and restock the propane if needed.
  • Check the propane cylinder hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year. A soap and water solution applied to the hose will bubble up to reveal escaping propane. If you detect a leak, turn off the tank and grill. If you can stop the leak, don’t use the grill until you have it serviced by a professional. If the leak won’t stop, call the fire department.
  • If you smell gas while cooking, get away from the grill and call the fire department. Do not attempt to move the grill.
  • Use only propane cylinders manufactured after April 2002 with overfill protection devices (OPD).
  • Never store propane cylinders in buildings or garages.

Read Part 2 of this article for guidelines for safely enjoying a fire pit or campfire.

If you’ve suffered fire damage to your home or business, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

We’re Here for You

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in fire restoration services, natural disaster and storm damage cleanup, water damage remediation and chemical cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO publishes educational articles on how you can protect your home and business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If you’ve suffered fire damage to your home or business, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

Summer Fire Safety (Part 2: Fire Pits and Campfires)

6/25/2020 (Permalink)

A fire burns in a fire pit Use your fire pit or campfire safely, and you'll have lots of good memories. Follow our advice to avoid an out-of-control fire.

This time of year, Americans look forward to gathering around a fire pit or campfire with friends and family. But what can be an enjoyable evening can turn into a fire tragedy if you’re not careful. In Part 2 of this article, we address how to safely enjoy your fire pit or campfire (Part 1 covered safety while grilling food).

Fire Pit Safety

With the increasing popularity of fire pits, knowing how to use them safely has become even more important. Follow this advice when setting up and using a fire pit.

  • Keep flammable material and fluids, such as gasoline, diesel fuel, kerosene and charcoal lighter fluid, away from the fire pit while in use.
  • Never use flammable fluids such as gasoline, alcohol, diesel fuel, kerosene and charcoal lighter fluid to light or relight fires.
  • Exercise the same precautions you would with an open fire.
  • Don’t wear loose fitting or flammable clothing such as nylon.
  • Keep a three-foot safety zone around the fire pit. Do not allow children to use the fire pit. Keep children and pets away.
  • Don’t burn trash, leaves, paper, cardboard or plywood. Avoid using soft wood such as pine or cedar that can pop and throw sparks. Seasoned hardwood is best.
  • Don’t overload the fire pit. Before starting the fire, make sure that the lid will still close to extinguish the fire in an emergency.
  • Check the wind direction before you light the fire.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher, garden hose or bucket of water nearby.

Campfire Safety

Follow these tips to stay safe around your campfire.

  • Don’t build a fire in hazardous, dry conditions or if the campground, area or event rules prohibit campfires.
  • Use an existing fire ring if available.
  • Choose a site that is at least fifteen feet away from tent walls, shrubs, trees or other flammable objects. The site should not have low-hanging branches overhead.
  • Keep a three-foot safety zone around the campfire.
  • Keep a bucket of water near your campfire.

When you’re ready to put out your fire, follow these guidelines:

  • Allow the wood to burn completely to ash, if possible.
  • Pour lots of water on the fire; drown all embers, not just the red ones. Pour until hissing sounds stop.
  • Stir the campfire ashes and embers with a shovel. Make sure everything is wet and cold to the touch.
  • Scrape the sticks and logs to remove any embers.
  • If you do not have water, use dirt. Mix dirt or sand with the embers and stir until all material is cool. Do not simply bury the fire, as the fire can smolder and catch roots on fire that will eventually get to the surface and start a wildfire.

If you’ve suffered fire damage to your home or business, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

We’re Here for You

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in fire restoration services, natural disaster and storm damage cleanup, water damage remediation and chemical cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO publishes educational articles on how you can protect your home and business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield
53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If you’ve suffered fire damage to your home or business, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836

What to Do If Your Washing Machine Leaks (Part 1)

6/18/2020 (Permalink)

A washing machine is surrounded by water A leak or flood from your washing machine can really damage your home—and fast! Take these steps immediately to minimize the damage.

If you suffer a flood or leak from your washing machine, the damage to your home can be extensive! A broken washing machine hose can spew up to 500 gallons of water per hour if not stopped. So first, stop the water, then figure out what caused the leak. Finally, get going on the cleanup, because the longer water sits on your floor, the worse the damage gets.

Shut Off the Water Supply and Electricity

Whether it’s a flood or a puddle, the first thing you need to do is to stop the flow of water. Shut off the water supply to the washer. The hot and cold shutoff valves are located where the house-supply lines meet the washer hoses. Often this is in a recessed wall box located adjacent to the washer.

Once you’ve stopped the flow of water, mop up any standing water. This will help prevent slips and falls while you’re working on your machine. It will also reduce the chances of water damage to your home and furnishings, and help prevent mold growth.

Next, cut the electrical power to the washer at the circuit breaker or fuse box. Don’t just pull the power plug in the back of the washer because its cord could be exposed to standing water and you could be shocked. If the leak is substantial, shut off the electricity to your home, too.

Empty the Washer

Remove the wet laundry—this will also remove some of the standing water from the washer, which will help drainage problems. Refer to your owner's manual for model-specific instructions. If the standing water is hot, wear rubber gloves. Place the items in a bucket and wring them out over a sink in the laundry room or kitchen.

Now you are ready to find the source of the leak and either fix it, call in professional help or replace your washer. Read Part 2 of this article for your next steps. 

We’re Here for You

The team at SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield has specialized training and experience in water damage remediation, fire restoration services, natural disaster prevention, chemical cleanup, and natural disaster cleanup. Call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield (860.649.0836) any time.

If your home or business suffers a flood or other water damage, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836 for immediate expert water damage cleanup

Other Helpful Blog Posts

SERVPRO publishes educational articles on how to protect your home or business from disasters and how to deal with mold, fire, water, sewage, storm and other damage.

SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield

53 Slater Street, Unit 2, Manchester, CT 06042
IICRC Certified
Ralph DiCristofaro 
Certified SERVPRO technicians
Call 860.649.0836
24-hour emergency service

If your home or business suffers a flood or other water damage, call SERVPRO of Manchester/Mansfield today at 860.649.0836 for immediate expert water damage cleanup