Recent Storm Damage Posts
Thunderstorms & Lightning
All thunderstorms are dangerous. Every thunderstorm produces lightning. While lightning fatalities have decreased over the past 30 years, lightning continues to be one of the top three storm-related killers in the United States. On average in the U.S., lightning kills 51 people and injures hundreds more. Although most lightning victims survive, people struck by lightning often report a variety of long-term, debilitating symptoms.
Other associated dangers of thunderstorms include tornadoes, strong winds, hail and flash flooding. Flash flooding is responsible for more fatalities – more than 140 annually – than any other thunderstorm-associated hazard. Dry thunderstorms that do not produce rain that reaches the ground are most prevalent in the western United States. Falling raindrops evaporate, but lightning can still reach the ground and can start wildfires.
Before Thunderstorm and Lightning
To prepare for a thunderstorm, you should do the following:
- To begin preparing, you should build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
- Remove dead or rotting trees and branches that could fall and cause injury or damage during a severe thunderstorm.
- Postpone outdoor activities.
- Secure outdoor objects that could blow away or cause damage.
- Get inside a home, building, or hard top automobile. Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you are much safer inside a vehicle than outside.
- Remember, rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide NO protection from lightning. However, the steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not touching metal.
- Shutter windows and secure outside doors. If shutters are not available, close window blinds, shades or curtains.
- Unplug any electronic equipment well before the storm arrives.
When it comes to hurricanes, the category means a lot. If a CAT 1 hurricane is coming your way, you can ride out the storm in your home. However, if a CAT 4 hurricane is barreling your way, you want to evacuate. So what does each category mean? Category 1 is a minimally damaging hurricane with winds reaching 95 miles per hour. The storm surge could range anywhere from 4 to 5 feet above sea level. Category 2 hurricane is referred to as moderately damaging. Winds could be anywhere from 96 to 110 miles per hour and the storm surge reaches 8 feet. Category 3 can bring extensive damage with winds ranging from 111 to 130 miles per hour, and the storm surge reaches 12 feet. Category 4 brings extreme damage with winds reaching 131 to 155 miles per hour. The storm surge for a CAT 4 is between 13 to 18 feet. Lastly is a category 5 hurricane, this cat of hurricane brings catastrophic damage with winds reaching well over 155 miles per hour, and the storm surge going over 18 feet. With any category of a hurricane, you want to board up your home and secure the perimeter around your home. The winds could easily blow items around your home into a window or damage your vehicle. If you do not know exactly what to do in order to prep your home for a hurricane, watch the local news for tips and ideas on what to do to best fit your home.
When a Storm Hits...
A local road flooded by Hurricane Irma
Whether it is a Category 5 hurricane or a bad thunderstorm rolling through, home owners should be prepared for any storm.
Take safety precautions
Any type of heavy winds can cause roof shingles, natural debris, or unnatural debris to occur. After the storm is over, take precaution when going outside because there could be debris such as nails, sharp wood, or other potentially dangerous items that are around your home.
Photograph the damage
If it is major or minor, take pictures IMMEDIATELY. You may not realize that something damaged your home until after you have moved it, so take pictures just in case (there is always the delete button). Insurance companies will need to see before pictures of the damage.
Contact your insurance company… and SERVPRO!
A homeowner must call their insurance company so an adjuster can be sent out to examine the damage so payment can be made.. Don’t forget to call your favorite restoration and mediation company, SERVPRO of Bryan, Effingham, McIntosh, and East Liberty Counties. We work around the clock to ensure happiness from our community! We will send a team out as quickly as possible to begin work for your home if disaster strikes!
How to Prepare for a Hurricane Evacuation
Hurricane season can be extremely scary for those who live on or around the coast. With the fear of winds, rain, and storm surge, people will be concerned with their safety and their home. Homeowners should be prepared to evacuate their homes and go further inland. Evacuations in itself can be intimidating. Here is some ways to help prepare you for an evacuation.
Make a Family Ready Plan
In this you want to include cash, prescription medications, and enough food and water for your entire family and pets for a few days in case these items are not readily accessible. For any families that are traveling in different vehicles make sure you have a backup plan if cell phones are not usable.
Think about what to do with valuable irreplaceable items
Documents such as passports, licenses, insurance cards, social security cards, and other legal papers you want to make sure you have copies of these along with a waterproof/fireproof container and travel with them. Other items such as irreplaceable photographs and meaningful items, place in a watertight and fireproof container to store in a safe place. You may not be able to take them with you for room purposes.
Take care of your food at home
You may want to freeze most of your food incase power is loss. Set your freezer on the coldest temperature so it stays colder longer. If you are anticipating a long-term power outage, you may want to clean out the refrigerator and freezer. If you do this, leave the doors open so there will be little risk of smell when you return.
Clear the grass areas around your home and secure windows and doors
If a hurricane is approaching, there is a high risk of items around your home to be blown around. This increases your risk of windows to be broken because of extra debris. Tie these items down or place them in a safe enclosed area for safe keeping. With the windows and doors, make sure you are boarding up the windows so there is less of a risk for window leaks and breaks.
When you return from the hurricane, if you have experienced any damage to your home, call your SERVPRO of Bryan, Effingham, McIntosh and East Liberty Counties. We will send a team out as soon as possible to begin work on your home.
How to Prepare for an Ice Storm
A view of the Georgia coast during the ice storm
This past week has been such a difficult time for the south. We aren’t typically prepared for an ice storm.
The main thing is to be prepared. When you are prepared for a winter storm, any obstacles that occur, you are ready. There are a few things one can do in order to prep for an unwelcomed and unusual storm. Stock up on foods that will last through an outage of power. In addition, you want to stock up on water, whether it’s bottled or stored in Ziploc bags. Keep flashlights and batteries in the house. Lastly, do not freak out if or when the power goes out.
If anything happens to your home, we are here for your storm disaster. Please give us a call so we can send out a team to help you.
How to prepare your home for the cold winter days
Check the pipes
With the temperature going down into the freezing numbers, homeowners should drip all the faucets at night. This ensures no water is still to freeze and burst a pipe overnight. A tip for outside pipes, make sure the pipe and hoses are free of water.
For homeowners with a chimney, you should get a professional to inspect and clean your chimney so there is very small risk of a chimney fire.
Clean your gutters
With winter approaching after fall, homeowners should clean out all of the gutters surrounding the home. Leaves, twigs, and other outdoor trash can cause water to be trapped in the gutter and freeze. When the ice unfreezes, it can cause a leak into the home.
Overall, you want to make sure your home is well insulated so your home will stay cozy and warm. Don’t forget to check the basement, attic, and roof for any indication of danger before the cold weather is in full swing. And of course, if you see anything in your home that could potentially turn into a home disaster, please call us. We can send one of our technicians out to inspect your home before anything further happens!
Expert Answers to Common Questions about Flood Damage in Darien
Flooding can be devastating. Call SERVPRO quickly so that we can help!
Team SERVPRO Deals with Flooding on a Daily Basis
Most homeowners either know somebody who has experienced flooding in their property or they have encountered it themselves. It can be stressful, frustrating, and very messy. It can also end up costing a lot if you do not arrange for repairs right away.
The thing to remember about flood damage in Darien homes is that it can come from all kinds of different places. The easiest way to prevent it is to keep up with routine maintenance. Keeping gutters clean, inspecting pipework regularly, and investing in plumbing services can make sure that your home stays protected.
Keep reading to learn more about flood damage and what happens when SERVPRO is brought in to deal with the aftermath.
What Happens When a House Floods?
Well, the answer is different in all situations. It depends primarily on the severity of the damage and how much water has intruded into the property. Usually, the first item to be compromised is the flooring. Carpets absorb liquid until they are saturated, and any backings or adhesives begin to come loose.
Drywall bows and warps, while wood is prone to swelling because it is more porous than other materials. If not dried and cleaned quickly, it starts to rot. Our technicians perform a visual inspection as soon as they arrive onsite, in order to identify the most vulnerable items and single them out for priority treatment.
Is It Safe When the Standing Water Is Gone?
Extraction of the standing water is only part of the process. Without thorough drying, the materials in your home are not safe from further damage. After 48 hours, mold becomes a risk, and organic substances degrade quickly.
After removal, SERVPRO implements a carefully controlled system of dehumidification and humidity monitoring. Fans, air movers, and powerful dehumidifiers are used in combination to create optimal drying conditions. It prevents the air from filling up with moisture and causing secondary water damage to furniture and other possessions.
How Long Does the Drying Process Take?
Once again, it is different for every home. The two biggest factors are the size of the affected area and the amount of water which has caused the problem. The balance of porous to non-porous materials has an impact on how long it takes to complete the drying process.
The more porous items that become saturated with liquid, the longer it will take to draw the water out. Usually, an average sized home gets remediated in around 2-4 days, but there are no certainties when it comes to internal flooding. The goal is complete repairs as quickly as possible, but without compromising on quality.
At SERVPRO of Bryan/Effingham/McIntosh/East Liberty Counties, high-quality restoration is a guarantee. We have access to sophisticated drying equipment, and our technicians are very skilled. Call us 24/7 at (912) 445-5190.
How the Experts Use ‘Drying Goals’ to Roll Back Flood Damage in Port Royal Properties
For most homeowners, flood damage repairs are something which doesn't warrant much thought until the need becomes urgent.
How SERVPRO Technicians Use Equipment to Restore Flood Damage in Port Royal Properties
For most homeowners, flood damage repairs are something which doesn't warrant much thought until the need becomes urgent. In fact, unless you live in a flood-prone area, you’re unlikely to have put huge steps in place for dealing with water damage. However, extreme rains and faulty water lines can also cause major problems.
You don’t have to live on the edge of a turbulent river to benefit from a solid, practical flood damage contingency plan. Flood damage in Port Royal properties is more common than you might think. Broken kitchen appliances, clogged drains, and broken pipes are all possible culprits. Fortunately, the experts at SERVPRO can respond fast if your home ever does get itself into a watery crisis.
At SERVPRO, we use a system of checks, reviews, and drying goals to ensure that the repair process is carried out successfully. Keep reading to find out more about how this works.
The Importance of Baseline Measurements
One thing which is crucial to effective flood damage repair is flexibility. All properties are different, and they all have unique needs. What may be considered dry in one area of the country may be far too dry for the climate of another. This is why the SERVPRO technicians always take baseline measurements before starting repairs.
They take these measurements from dry, undamaged areas of the property. It allows us to determine what is ‘normal’ for you, as opposed to using some arbitrary standard. While it may sound like a small detail, it can have a big impact on how you feel in your home after the repairs are finished. Getting the level of dryness and humidity right also ensures the longevity, success, and quality of flood damage repairs.
The Effect of Rapid Evaporation Methods
Flood damage remediation experts use dry air to increase the rate of evaporation and pull the moisture out of very humid, heavy air. Generally, this requires the humidity of the affected space to be below 40%. At this level, the air gets ‘thirsty’ and starts drawing moisture from the surroundings. It is very important that water damage experts don’t rely solely on relative humidity readings.
To be sure that the drying process – be it dehumidifying, air scrubbing, or air moving – is working, specific humidity measurements must also be taken. These are compared with the baseline measurements until the two match. Ultimately, this is the primary drying goal; the objective that your flood damage repair team is trying to achieve.
Locally Owned Company with National Resources
For help and support dealing with a flood damaged property, speak to the experts at SERVPRO of Bryan/Effingham/McIntosh and East Liberty Counties. We have access to state of the art drying, cleaning, and restoration tools. We can carry out repairs fast and get your home back to full health as soon as possible. Call us 24/7 on (912) 445-5190.
SERVPRO Works Hard to Restore Order After Hurricane Matthew
SERVPRO Local and Our National Recovery Teams Help Recovery After Hurricanes
Hurricane damage is one of the banes of being a homeowner in a region that has seen many devastating storms. Preventative measures and purchases you can take to protect your home from hurricane damage completely are not possible, but still are critical. High winds, debris, storm surges, and flooding are all natural events that occur whether you have put up storm shutters, placed sandbags around your home, or other measures.
Storm damage in Savannah from Hurricane Matthew can be catastrophic when it first hits, but with the professional services led by our specialists at SERVPRO, we can help set your mind at ease as we remove the water from your home and begin the restoration process. We can also work directly with your insurance company for you!
What is a Storm Surge?
A storm surge is caused by the rising of the sea as a result of powerful winds associated with a storm event. A hurricane or tropical storm are the most common causes of storm surges in regions like Savannah, where abnormal water levels can be generated by a massive storm event. The five to seven feet of surge is stacked on top of the normal high tide mark.
Your home can be at great risk of a storm surge and unfortunately, there is not much you can do to prevent it during a hurricane. Storm surges can penetrate far inland from a coastline. In the past, Hurricane Ike produced storm surges in Texas and Louisiana coastal regions, moving inland nearly 30 miles in some locations. Hurricane Matthew was nearly 250 miles wide and traveled for over 3,000 miles along its path of destruction.
All living areas along the Gulf Coast and Eastern Coast of the U.S. are vulnerable to water damage caused by storm surges. The best thing you can do when anticipating a dangerous hurricane is to get out, listen to your local and federal officials.
The Safest Defense is Retreat
When expecting a dangerous hurricane, pay special attention to your local and county officials, and if an evacuation is suggested, it is best for the safety of you and your family to avoid the storm and impending water damage. If an evacuation order is mandatory, do not try to ride out the storm. Your home can be replaced, but your life and those of your family cannot.
Contact SERVPRO of Bryan, Effingham, McIntosh & East Liberty Counties at (912) 445-5190 at anytime, day or night. With our 24/7 Emergency Services, our staff is here to take your call if you have been affected by a recent hurricane or have experienced any water damage to your home. Our Emergency Response Network of SERVPRO franchises responds to natural disaster with teams, equipment, and know-how.
Preventing Hurricane Damage
Roof repairs can minimize water getting into your house during a storm. If water does get into your house, call SERVPRO quickly to remediate!
A Few Ideas to Consider to Minimize Potential Storm Damage
With their high winds and risk of flooding, hurricanes can cause a lot of damage to your structure. While you can’t control the weather, there are always some things that you can do to prevent hurricane damages from happening.
Maintaining Your Roof
Your roof is one of the most vulnerable parts of your home when you are talking about wind and hurricane damage. Once the roof is damaged, it can lead to even more damage throughout the rest of your home.
Because of this, it is essential to maintain your roof and have professionals check it regularly. This will mean ensuring there are no loose shingles, nailing down roof sheathing and making sure that the connection between the walls and the roof is tight to stop updrafts. Your roof maintenance company can do these things for you.
Keeping Trees Low
Large trees grown on your property can create a visual statement and be dramatic. However, this means that you are giving the wind a weapon as well with which to cause severe damage to your home. If a large tree blows over in a storm, this can go through your walls and windows damaging your property. Try to keep trees under a certain height instead, and you will have less to worry about if the winds pick up.
Look around your yard and consider everything which could maybe be a projectile in heavy winds. This means that anything which is not nailed down can become a danger. Garden benches are common items for this, so position them in a way which will lower the likelihood of them causing damage. Other threats could include tools, barbecues, ornaments, toys, and rocks.
Doors and Windows
Do your best as well to protect doors and windows. If you live somewhere that has a high probability of storms, you can get permanent storm shutters. If you know that a storm is on its way, you can use plywood as a temporary solution. Also ensure that your windows are insulated well and if you have older windows, vibration on its own can be enough to make them shatter in some instances.
Preparing for Hurricane Damage
Even with the best preparation, no home is impervious to a severe hurricane, and you may have to deal with some hurricane restoration. There are some things you can do to prepare for this as well. First, make sure to have the number of a reputable hurricane restoration company in your phone so you can use it when needed.
Ensure that you also have the right insurance coverage for your home and your belongings. You will then be able to get the restoration services you need without having to pay out of pocket.
SERVPRO of Bryan, Effingham, McIntosh & East Liberty Counties is the hurricane restoration company you are looking for. Our trained professionals are ready at all times to come to your property and properly assess the damages and begin remediation so you can get back to a normal way of life as soon as possible. Call (912) 445-5190.