Recent Storm Damage Posts

Thunderstorm Safety

9/28/2018 (Permalink)

Did you know SERVPRO of Richmond is a proud partner with the American Red Cross? According to the Red Cross, A thunderstorm is considered severe if it produces wind gusts of at least 58 miles per hour. Every thunderstorm produces lightning, which kills more people each year than tornadoes or hurricanes. Heavy rain from thunderstorms can cause flash flooding, and high winds can damage homes and blow down tree and utility poles - causing widespread power outages.

WATCH vs. WARNING

Watch: Severe thunderstorms are possible in and near the watch area

Warning: Severe weather has been reported by spotters or indicated by radar. Warnings indicate imminent danger to life and property.

Be Prepared

  • Learn about your local community’s emergency warning system for severe thunderstorms
  • Pick a safe place in your home for household members to gather during a thunderstorm This should be away from windows, skylights and glass doors that could be broken by strong winds or hail
  • Make a list of items to bring inside in the event of a severe thunderstorm
  • Make trees and shrubbery more wind resistant by keeping them trimmed and removing damaged branches
  • Protect your animals by ensuring that any outside buildings that house them are protected in the same way as your home

Make Preparedness Kit

  • Water—one gallon per person, per day
  • Food—non-perishable, easy-to-prepare
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
  • Extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Medications (7-day supply) and medical items
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Sanitation & personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family & emergency contact information
  • Extra cash

Final Step

Call SERVPRO of Richmond at 804.740.6151 if your home or business experiences damages from a storm. We have the resources to handle any size disaster.

There's a reason they say we are "Faster to any Disaster!"

For more information, visit the Red Cross website: http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/thunderstorm

September is National Preparedness Month

8/31/2018 (Permalink)

September is recognized as National Preparedness Month to remind everyone that “we must all take action, now and throughout the year, for the types of emergencies that could affect us where we live, work, and also where we visit,” (ready.gov).

With the recent flooding in Louisiana in mind, the last thing you want to worry about is how to communicate and what to do during a disaster like this horrific event that killed hundreds and left many families without homes.

What you can do:

  • Make A Family Plan – you may not be together with your family during a disaster.
    • Set up emergency alerts from local officials
    • Discuss family plans for disasters and plan where to go for safety.
    • Collect information on paper including, phone numbers, emails, social media, medical facilities, doctors, service providers, school
    • Decide on safe, familiar places where your family can go for protection and if you have pets think about animal-friendly locations
  • Take Action – ensure you can go for at least 3 days without electricity, water service, access to supermarket, or other local services
    • Prepare a disaster supply kit (water, food, battery-powered radio, flashlight, first aid kit, whistle, local maps)
    • Bookmark weather.gov to stay informed on severe weather
    • Learn about wireless emergency alerts, messages that will be sent to your phone during an emergency

Consider the following disasters that can occur at any time: Learn more about hazards which can affect your community and ways you can take action to prepare.

  • Earthquakes – can occur suddenly and be deadly. Most earthquake-related casualties result from collapsing walls, flying glass, and falling objects.
  • Floods - Flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States and can happen anywhere.
  • Hurricanes - have the power to cause widespread devastation, and can affect both coastal and inland areas.
  • Tornadoes - are one of nature’s most violent storms, and can cause death, injury, and destruction within seconds.
  • Wildfires - can occur anywhere and can destroy homes, businesses, infrastructure, natural resources, and agriculture.

Everything You Need To Know For Power Outages

7/24/2018 (Permalink)

This summer, we have seen some major power outages across the nation. Power outages can not only be dangerous to you and your family, but they can also cause immense stress if you are not properly prepared.

According to ready.gov:

Before a Power Outage:

  • Build or restock your emergency preparedness kit, including a flashlight, batteries, cash, and first aid supplies.
  • Make sure you have alternative charging methods for your phone or any device that requires power.
  • Charge cell phones and any battery powered devices.
  • Know where the manual release lever of your electric garage door opener is located and how to operate it.
  • Purchase ice or freeze water-filled plastic containers to help keep food cold during a temporary power outage.
  • Keep your car’s gas tank full-gas stations rely on electricity to power their pumps. If you use your car to re-charge devices, do NOT keep the car running in a garage, partially enclosed space, or close to a home, this can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Learn about the emergency plans that have been established in your area by visiting your state’s or local website so you can locate the closest cooling and warming shelters.
  • If you rely on anything that is battery-operated or power dependent like a medical device determine a back-up plan.

During a Power Outage

  • Only use flashlights for emergency lighting, candles can cause fires.
  • Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed. Most food requiring refrigeration can be kept safely in a closed refrigerator for several hours. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours. A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours.
  • Take steps to remain cool if it is hot outside. In intense heat when the power may be off for a long time, consider going to a movie theater, shopping mall or “cooling shelter” that may be open in your community. If you remain at home, move to the lowest level of your home, since cool air falls. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing. Drink plenty of water, even if you do not feel thirsty.
  • Put on layers of warm clothing if it is cold outside. Never burn charcoal for heating or cooking indoors. Never use your oven as a source of heat. If the power may be out for a prolonged period, plan to go to another location (the home of a relative or friend, or a public facility) that has heat to keep warm.
  • Turn off or disconnect appliances and other equipment in case of a momentary power “surge” that can damage computers and other devices. Consider adding surge protectors.
  • If you are considering purchasing a generator for your home, consult an electrician or engineer before purchasing and installing.
  • Only use generators away from your home and NEVER run a generator inside a home or garage, or connect it to your home's electrical system.

If you experience a water damage after a storm, call SERVPRO of Richmond at 804.740.6151 to remediate your damage and restore you home to pre-storm damage condition.

Severe Weather - Tornado Season

7/11/2018 (Permalink)

Luckily, in Richmond, VA we do not experience the potential threats that tornadoes can have as often as other parts of the country. These places include the upper Mid-west, the northern and southern plains and the Gulf coast.

Tornado season usually refers to the time of year the U.S. sees the most tornadoes. The peak “tornado season” for the Southern Plains is during May into early June. On the Gulf coast, it is earlier during the spring. In the northern plains and upper Midwest, tornado season is in June or July. But, remember, tornadoes can happen at any time of year. Tornadoes can also happen at any time of day or night, but most tornadoes occur between 4–9 p.m.

However, it is always a good idea to be prepared in case a disaster strikes. About 1,200 tornadoes hit the U.S. yearly. Since official tornado records only date back to 1950, we do not know the actual average number of tornadoes that occur each year. Plus, tornado spotting and reporting methods have changed a lot over the last several decades.

SERVPRO of Richmond will respond 24-hours a day to emergency fire and water services. We are a proud partner with the Red Cross and take part in cleaning up damages after a storm. SERVPRO of Richmond is also an extreme team, meaning we can travel across the country to assist with a storm damage or very large loss. We have the tools and the people who have experience in water, storm, fire damage restoration and we are always here to help.

A list of questions and answers about tornadoes can be found here

How to Prevent Water Damage from Rain

7/11/2018 (Permalink)

Everyone loves the occasional summer thunderstorm - but it could cause major problems if rain water seeps into your home. One of the most common sources of water damage in a home is from rain water. It can enter through leaks in your roof, seeping in from the foundation, or even flooding into your basement. It is important to take the necessary steps to prevent water damage in your home such as:

Checking for proper drainage:

  • inspect your roof thoroughly for structural damage or holes
  • clear your gutters from leaves and other debris that could block the flow of water from draining into the yard

Install or Check Sump Pumps:

  • sump pump are very effective for keeping rainwater out of your house
  • have a professional check your sump pump to insure it is working properly once a year

Check sealant inside and outside foundation

  • make sure the tar sealant covering the inner and outer sides of the foundation are intact

Inspect the slope of your lawn

  • grading is the slope of your lawn and it should always slope away from your home to redirect the rainwater from flooding around the foundations

When you are dealing with storm, flood, and water damage, immediate action is crucial. You should choose the company with storm damage experience and expertise that has the resources and equipment to handle the job. SERVPRO of Richmond can respond immediately to storm and flooding conditions.

Ceiling Damage After A Storm

6/20/2018 (Permalink)

This tenant for a property local management company experienced a water damage to his ceiling after a heavy thunderstorm. The rainwater seeped through the roof and into his ceiling, causing the water to come through and out into his apartment. Our SERVPRO of Richmond crew came in to extract the water and demo the ceiling to remediate the damage the water caused.

After our mitigation crews dry out the affected areas using state-of-the-art tools and technology, SERVPRO of Richmond's reconstruction division will be able to come in a put the ceiling and walls back together again. We are a one-stop shop, making it easier for the customer to deal with one company that can finish every part of the work and finish it quickly and professionally!

Preventing Damage and Ensuring Safety During a Richmond Winter Storm

3/6/2015 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Preventing Damage and Ensuring Safety During a Richmond Winter Storm During Richmond winter storms and extreme periods of cold, your family and property are at-risk for many perils regardless of where you live.

Preventing Damage and Ensuring Safety During Winter Storms 

During Richmond winter storms and extreme periods of cold, your family and property are at-risk for many perils regardless of where you live. Keeping a calm and practical attitude during this time can minimize many of the dangers. For example, people often use space heaters and carelessly start fires. If the power goes off, your positive actions can reduce the negative consequences.

Safety Tips to Follow During Winter Storms

Staying informed can prevent many dangers, so listen to the radio or television for . Watch for changing conditions, and prepare for a siege if the weather warrants it. Start following your disaster or emergency plan to conserve resources. Reduce temperatures, cut heat to rooms that you don't need and move your pets to a place where they're sheltered. Dress in layers to save body heat. Other safety tips include: 

  • Open cabinet doors around interior pipes to allow warm air to circulate around the pipes.
  • If pipes freeze, open faucets to relieve pressure and prevent them from bursting. Remove insulation around the pipes, wrap them with rags and pour hot water over them until water begins to run.
  • Stay indoors unless an extreme emergency arises.
  • Use only safe methods of providing extra heat because fires are more common during storms. Make sure that kerosene heaters are ventilated, and always fill them outdoors for safety reasons.
  • Let faucets drip during periods of extreme cold.
  • If you must drive, let someone know where you're going and when you're expected and stick to the major roads and daylight driving.
  • Wet clothing loses its insulating value, so replace wet things with dry garments.
  • Keep exterior entries and unheated spaces closed.
  • Check your roof after major snow and ice events to see whether snow and ice have accumulated in areas to create unsafe weight.
  • If water begins to penetrate your home, turn off gas and electricity. When it's safe to begin removing water, remove damaged materials and as much standing water as possible before calling a remediation expert.

Even minor periods of cold can damage pipes and influence family members to try risky behavior. This fact is especially true in areas that don't usually experience cold weather. If you leave your home during inclement weather, set heat at a minimum of 55-degrees Fahrenheit to protect your possessions from the cold. If you plan to be away for some time, consider turning off your water and draining water heaters and hot tubs to prevent catastrophic leaks and flooding. Remove snow from window wells, stair wells and areas of the roof where snow accumulates, but don't melt the snow because it can cause water damage.

Safety is your foremost concern during a winter storm in Richmond, but you can also minimize the risks to your home by following safe practices during a storm. 

SERVPRO of Richmond Professionals provide fire and water damage restoration services. SERVPRO of Richmond proudly serves Chesterfield, Richmond, Henrico, Glen Allen, Midlothian, Short Pump, Petersburg, Colonial Heights, Chester, Hopewell, and surrounding areas. We are available 24 hours/7 days a week and are ready to restore damage to your home or commercial structure caused by:

24/7 Fire Damage Restoration Service * 24/7 Carpet Restoration Water Damage * 24/7 House Flooding Damage * 24/7 Mold Remediation *24/7 Bio-hazard Crime/Suicide Clean *24/7 Fire Restoration.