Archived Storm Damage Blog Posts
How SERVPRO Can Help Mitigate Storm Damage
Recent Hurricanes have caused Billions of dollars in damage.
SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley is prepared to help you deal with the unfortunate and seemingly random destruction violent storms can present. A recent example of this is the cumulative teamwork of SERVPRO with several recent hurricanes. Our teams were able to pull from the various talent across the United States and work together to bring the most effective and efficient relief to those in need.
Our teams were able to work together and provide immediate care to those in need during the recent hurricanes Sally and Laura. Even during times such as these SERVPRO is committed to helping those when all else seems bleak. Our passion and greatest joy is to make it “Like it never even happened,” for our clients.
If you or anyone you know has experienced damage due to severe storms give SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley a call at (661) 296-4600 today.
How to Prevent a Fire in the Home
Knowledge of how to prevent or limit the damage of a fire and protect yourself and loved ones is paramount.
With all of the recent wildfires and widespread damage throughout much of California it is important to know how to prevent damage from spreading to your home or a spontaneous fire occurring.
Clear the Home of Combustibles
One of the most straightforward things to do is to keep your home clear of unnecessarily combustible items. For example, one should not stack wood next to the home. This could catch fire or cause further damage if someone is grilling and a burning ember catches it ablaze. Furthermore, your home’s bushes, foliage, and trees should be kept trimmed and not allowed to directly touch the home.
Incorporate Flame-Retardant Building Materials
When building a home or moving into one ensure that there are enough fire-retardant safety catches built into the home. An inspector can help you to determine this if that is not your area of expertise. Flame retardant building materials can help slow the spread of a fire and prevent further fire damage until the fire can be contained and extinguished.
Keep an Eye Out for Nearby Fires
Generally, a fire can be contained however if there is a nearby wildfire it is in the best interest of the homeowner to get out of dodge until the fire has been quelled. You can keep an eye on the local news but here is a great tool which gives you a better understanding and knowledge of the state fires. This is the most practical way to prevent fires at the home but also keep you and your loved ones safe.
If you or any loved ones have been affected by wildfires give SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley at (661) 296-4600.
Making Advanced Preparations for Severe Storm Safety | SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley
Person using a tablet for weather alerts. These are a great way to stay informed on the local and national forecast.
Thunderstorms and other severe weather events have been known to cause unprecedented damages in impacted areas. While some severe storms will pass by without incident, others will lead to wind, hail and lightning damage that can devastate an area.
For this reason, it is important to prepare ahead of time so you are never caught off guard due to a severe thunderstorm. Being aware of weather alert definitions, stocking and storing your emergency kit, and obtaining a reliable weather alert system for the home will give you peace of mind and make sure you are as safe as possible during a severe weather event.
Be Aware of Weather Alert Definitions
When local officials issue weather alerts, it is important to be aware of what they mean so you can know how to respond appropriately and stay safe. If a severe weather watch is issued for an area, that means that storms are possible but not currently happening, so standing by and staying tuned is advised. For severe weather warnings, however, a storm is currently happening or about to begin—this means to take cover and prepare to be impacted by the storm.
Stock and Store Your Emergency Kit
Having all the essentials in case of severe weather will help keep you and your family comfortable and safe while severe weather passes through. Having reliable light sources and backup batteries, shelf-stable food and fresh water is helpful for comfort, and a first-aid kit will come in handy in case an injury occurs. You should store this emergency kit in a temperature-controlled area where your family can hunker down and wait for the storm to pass, such as a basement bathroom or a hallway.
Obtain a Reliable Weather Alert System
While we typically rely on the internet and our cell phones for any pertinent updates regarding the weather, in the event of severe weather, this is not advised. Cell phones can become unreliable due to dead batteries and poor reception when electricity and cell signals are impacted by storms, so obtaining a backup method for weather alerts such as a non-electric weather radio will allow you to be certain you will stay informed.
If your home has been impacted by storm damage, we are here for you. You can contact us 24⁄7 to get a quick response to your home’s damages.
How to Prepare for Unpredictable Times | SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley
During recent years, there have been many natural disasters which have affected people and nations across the world. This has caused a great deal of concern and fear. However, with the right attitude and a little bit of preparation you can actually sit quite comfortably during times of uncertainty.
What Does it Mean to Prepare?
Modern media would like to paint anyone who is preparing for the worst as some kind of extremist “prepper” or a lunatic waiting for the sky to fall. In reality, everyone is a prepper. This is the reason we have bank accounts, retirement funds, and even something as simple as fridges or non-perishable foods. No one knows what tomorrow will hold. Therefore, we should be at least somewhat cognizant of the potential for peril. This should not be an overwhelming fear or something which debilitates us but rather encourages us to appreciate everything in life and be prepared for when things do not go as planned.
What Should You Have?
The most important thing to have is going to be food and water. However, this does not mean one should go out and get potato chips and some soda. You should buy calorie dense, nutritious, and non-perishable food such as rice, pasta, and canned goods. Furthermore, dried products such as potato flakes, dried fruit and beans, and oatmeal all have a shelf life of 20+ years. One should also have a good deal of water but be prepared that this could run out. The human body can go several weeks without food but only three days without water. Therefore, one should look into water purification tablets, filters, and even potentially gadgets such as water filters. Personal hygiene products and basic medical supplies should be a priority as well. One may also want to have basic camping supplies such as matches, a lightweight and easy to setup shelter, and sleeping bags in the event that extreme weather or unforeseen circumstances would force one to leave their residence.
What’s the Point?
The main goal in preparing for the worst is not to freak out or constantly overthink everything in life. Rather it is just the attempt to be ready for whatever this unpredictable world throws at you. Everyone should at least have some kind of plan for themselves and their loved ones should anything happen.
How Storms can Damage Your Home | SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley
Storms and natural disasters are some of the most destructive and expensive forms of damage to homes across the United States. Natural Disasters cost the U.S. over $91 billion alone in 2018. Article from CNBC on this topic. This can vary from flooding, hail, snow, fire, lightning, or hurricane damage. A great portion of the damage to homeowner’s property is not just from the initial impact. The real concern is in secondary damage which may follow due to structural damage to the property or other concerns such as bacterial growth.
The most important thing to do when your property experiences storm damage is to deal with the aftermath. This may take some time for you to collect yourself and come to terms with what you are going through. This is perfectly fine and a smart thing to do. However, it is imperative to ensure that your property will not experience any further damage after the fact. This depends on the scenario but in general you should have an inspection of the property by a trained professional. This will help you understand the extent of the damage and what your options for restoration and repair are. Furthermore, in the case of flooding you should act quickly. Remove as much of the standing water as possible and then set up some dehumidifiers until you can get professionals onsite to complete a full extraction of the moisture and water.
Know When to Ask for Help
While working on your own home can feel rewarding and give you a sense of accomplishment it can also be quite laborious and at times dangerous without the proper equipment and training. If this is the case for you don’t hesitate to take action.
How SERVPRO can Help
Here at SERVPRO we have the equipment and expertise needed to effectively mitigate whatever storm damage your home or commercial property has experienced. We have 24/7 availability which allows us to service you in the light or in the night.
Whatever your needs may be do not hesitate and give SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley a call at (661) 296-4600.
How to Prepare for Unpredictable Spring Weather | SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley
Lightning is a common source of damage and destruction for homeowners or their property.
The spring season is here, meaning we can enjoy delightful weather, but we must also buckle up for whatever Mother Nature may choose to send our way.
Severe Weather in the Spring
With spring comes longer days and more sunshine, but unfortunately, the season also brings with it the threat of severe weather throughout the country. It’s an uncertain time of year, which means the weather may change at moment’s notice.
Unstable temperatures are the cause for changing weather, going from warm to cold in even the same day. That temperature change can result in extreme weather changes as well.
Thunderstorms become more common throughout the spring and are the main cause of severe weather. They can occur whenever warm, moist air collides with cool, dry air, which is most common in the spring and summer.
When looking at natural catastrophe losses in the U.S. for 2017, severe thunderstorms caused the most losses and produced some of the costliest results. Out of 50 events, there were 85 fatalities and an estimated total of $25.4 billion in overall losses.
Whenever there is a severe thunderstorm present, they can bring about a threat of flooding, high winds and even tornadoes if the conditions are right. It has been found that in modern history, 10% of all violent tornadoes have occurred in March, with April, May and June taking the top spots at 30%, 24% and 15% respectively.
Prepping for Mother Nature’s Choice
We are not able to predict the weather with 100% accuracy, but fortunately, there are tools available to forecasters to at least give us warning that severe weather could be coming. Advanced warnings, along with the right preparation, can greatly improve overall safety for your family.
Here are some things you can do to your home to prepare for the chance of severe weather:
- Clear out your home’s gutters, drains and downspouts.
- Trim trees of precarious limbs or branches that could break off in a storm.
- Secure or store outdoor belongings if severe weather is in the forecast.
Having an emergency kit on hand is always advised. These kits should include the following:
- Battery-operated flashlight and NOAA weather radio, with extra batteries for both
- Emergency evacuation or shelter plans
- Important personal info, like telephone numbers of neighbors, family and friends, insurance and property info, numbers for the utility companies, and medical info
- A first-aid kit with things like non-latex gloves, adhesive bandages, tweezers, sterile gauze pads, aspirin packets, adhesive cloth tape and scissors
- 3–5 day supply of bottled water and nonperishable food
- Personal hygiene items
- Blankets or sleeping bag
Despite its unpredictability, there is one thing that always remains true of the spring weather season: It always happens. If your home or business is damaged in a storm, you can depend on SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley to get the cleanup and restoration process started fast.
Creating a Severe Weather Plan for Your Family | SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley
While there is often advanced warning for some types of severe weather, there are also times when Mother Nature can manage to catch us off-guard.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take and safety tips to follow to prepare your family for various severe weather occurrences.Coming Up With a Severe Weather Plan
One of the best ways to be prepared in severe weather situations is to have a family emergency planestablished.
If your family does have an emergency plan in place, be sure to discuss and review it and have drills at the onset of various weather seasons, making sure that everyone knows exactly what to do at a moment’s notice.
If you’ve not yet created a family emergency plan, here are some things to take into consideration when creating it:
1. Getting Emergency Alerts
Thanks to technology today, it is easy to receive emergency alerts and warnings in the palm of your hand by way of smartphones, as well as receive alerts through radio and television broadcasts. If you have a weather app or Google on your smartphone, you will quickly receive emergency alerts, which can provide you with valuable time in severe weather situations.
2. Where Is Your Storm Shelter?
Taking shelter in areas where tornadoes are common means you’ll want to be in the lowest part of your home, preferably a basement if you have one. If that is not possible, choose an interior room on the lowest level of your home or building that is away from corners, windows, doors and outside walls. Be sure to visit ready.govto learn about other situations that may require a storm shelter or basement.
3. Know Your Evacuation Routes
Evacuations are stressful, so you should always have evacuation routes determined ahead of times, since things such as hurricanes, flooding and fires can force you from your home in a hurry. It’s wise to have multiple routes just in case one is impassable, and make sure those routes will have places to stay with your pets along the way if you have furry family members to evacuate with.
4. Keeping in Touch With Family
When there is an emergency, communication is key. It is easy to rely on cell phones to keep in touch with your family, but in some circumstances, that just isn’t feasible.
Cell phone towers can incur damage, phones could be lost or left behind, and batteries will die when there if there is a power outage and there is no power source for recharging.
Hence, it is wise to have an emergency communication plan in place for your family and a safe meeting place for your family to meet should family members be separated during the emergency.
If a storm does cause damage to your home or business, don’t hesitate to call your friends at SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley to get the cleanup and restoration process started.
A Natural Disaster Plan Can Help Keep Your Business Prepared | SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley
Have you ever stopped to think about how Mother Nature can prove to be quite a formidable foe, throwing everything from floods, hurricanes and tornadoes to wildfires and earthquakes at us? The key to being able to handle it is preparing in advance.
Being prepared for those scenarios involves creating a natural disaster plan for your business. Some aspects to consider when designing that plan are laid out in this blog.What to Factor In
There are many factors you will need to consider when developing a disaster plan for your business. Items to consider include:
- How to protect your employees
- How to secure your assets
- How to get business up and running again
Thankfully, we have at our fingertips many checklists made available from sources like the Red Cross, FEMA and Ready.gov that can help you identify areas that need to be included in your natural disaster preparedness plan. These sources will also highlight areas that may need more preparation than you have already completed.How to Keep Employees and Visitors Safe
Because a disaster can strike without warning, it is extremely important to have a plan that lays out procedures and safety measures for employees and visitors. Clearly and properly mark all evacuation routes and exits from your facility, choose an area that can be used as a shelter space, consider installing emergency lighting, and have designated staff called “safety wardens” properly trained and ready and able to guide or help with all emergency efforts.
When deciding on a shelter space, ideally a basement or storm cellar is the best location in case of tornadoes or other high-wind situations. However, if you have no basement space available, locate and mark a small interior room on the lowest level of the building, such as a closet or interior hallway.How to Keep Assets Safe
In a brick and mortar location, there are still mindful choices that you’ll have to make about how to protect the assets inside the building. From equipment to merchandise, there are thousands of dollars at risk when a natural disaster strikes.
Keep a comprehensive and up-to-date inventory and pictures of these items in a safe place as they will be helpful during the insurance claim process. If your assets are kept on a computer server, take the steps necessary to ensure that regular backups are being performed and the storage system cannot be damaged.
As a building owner, take the time to work with a contractor and uncover any areas that could need structural integrity improvement. The contractor can also show you possible safety upgrades and advise on any areas that are not up to code for certain weather situations.Getting Business Up and Running Again
In the event of a natural disaster, it is possible that your business will have to close for repairs as a result of damage incurred, but every day you remain closed is another day of lost profits. That is why it is a good idea to have a “disaster” fund set up to cover any additional costs that your insurance will not cover.
Put together a list of contractors who will make themselves readily available for any repairs needed, and know who to call for cleanup and restoration services that will be available to quickly respond to your emergency situation.
With SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley, you can count on us to get to the disaster faster and make it "Like it never even happened." Our training and expertise have prepared us to help with water damage, storm damage, fire damage and mold remediation quickly and effectively.
Knowing what to do when disaster strikes your business is of the utmost importance. When it comes to the cleanup and restoration aspects, depend on SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley to be there for you.
Different Damage That Can Be Done by Thunderstorms | SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley
Hail like this can be extremely destructive and vary tremendously in size.
The warmer spring and summer months are prime time for thunderstorms to develop, which means there is an added worry of storm damage.
Do you know what some of the most prevalent types of storm damage are?
The Lowdown on Storms
Across the globe, we see an average of 16 million thunderstorms yearly. Here in the U.S., we normally have some 100,000 thunderstorm occurrences each year, and out of those, around 10% can be classified as severe.
In order for a thunderstorm to develop, certain conditions must be met, such as moisture and rising unstable air that is accompanied by a “lifting” mechanism caused by either hills or mountains that force air to rise, or where warm/cold or wet/dry air bump together, causing a rising motion.
There are three stages to thunderstorms:
- the developing stage
- the mature stage
- the dissipating stage
You will find things like heavy rain, hail, lightning, high winds and even tornadoes come around during the mature state.
While there are many different aspects that can turn dangerous during a thunderstorm, a top safety risk is the opportunity for high winds to send debris flying.
Wind speeds/gusts in a severe thunderstorm can exceed 57.5 mph, and this is plenty of speed to create damage.
Even the items in your yard that would seem the most harmless can turn into projectiles. Tree branches, gravel, mailboxes, fencing, lawn furniture, potted plants and garbage cans are all possible projectiles during a high wind situation. You should take care to make sure items in your yard are secured prior to any thunderstorms rolling through.
There are many other types of damage thunderstorms can create besides wind damage:
Lightning. If lightning strikes your home, expect to need some new electrical systems. The lightning can pass through your home’s wiring and not only become a fire risk, but also damage anything that is plugged in.
Tornado. Anything that can reach upward of 200 mph wind speeds is a force to be reckoned with. Tornadoes can cause a large amount of damage over a large area in little time at all.
Hail. Did you know that per to NOAA, the cost of hail damage can top out at $1 billion a year? This includes damage to crops, vehicles and structures.
Flood. Storms often bring on heavy rains, and those heavy rains can result in flooding. Flash floods can do much damage and be strong enough to wash things away.
If a thunderstorm has resulted in damage to your home or business, know that the team at SERVPRO® of Santa Clarita Valley is available 24⁄7 to help with cleanup and restoration.
Preparing For a Flood
In the next few days, Southern California will be experiencing a significant amount of rainfall. To avoid disasters in your local home, here are some pointers to keep in mind before a flood:
- Construct barriers to stop floodwater from entering your home
- Seal walls in basements with waterproofing compounds to avoid seepage
- Check gutters and make sure they are not clogged
Here are some important terms you need to be familiar with to help identify a flood hazard when your local news warns you:
- Flood Watch – flooding is possible
- Flash Flood Watch – flash flooding is possible; be prepared to move to higher ground
- Flood Warning – flooding is occurring or will occur soon; if advised to evacuate, do so immediately
- Flash Flood Warning – a flash flood is occurring; seek higher ground on foot immediately
Post Flood Action
Southern California is not known for its storms and floods but when storms come, and floods your local neighborhood, be sure to follow these following guidelines:
- Tune in to your local news to learn whether the water supply is safe to drink.
- Avoid floodwaters; it may be contaminated by oil, gasoline, or sewage water.
- Avoid moving water.
- Return home only when authorities indicate it is safe.
- Avoid downed power lines, and report them to the power company.
- Stay away from damaged sewage systems – they are a serious health hazard
These are just some pointers for you to follow in the aftermath of a flood. If there is anything that your local SERVPRO can do for you, whether it is water remediation or temporary roofing, do not hesitate to call us at (661)296-4600.
Should Storms Worry Me?
Living in Southern California might have you wondering why we too should be ready for when storms come. Southern California does not see much rain throughout the year but storms should still be something we prepare ourselves for.
Specifically, this rainy season, we must be extra careful after the Sand Fire that hit us recently. Without the trees and bushes in our mountains, we are more vulnerable to landslides and flash floods from the rain we have been getting.
When your home is hit by a flood or storm, remember that your local SERVPRO is here to restore your home to its pre-storm condition. We specialize in restoring homes and buildings in a quick and timely manner, so that you and your family could go back in to your normal routine.
Call us at (661)296-4600
When Storms or Floods hit Santa Clarita, SERVPRO is ready!
SERVPRO of Santa Clarita Valley specializes in storm and flood damage restoration. Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.
Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.
Resources to Handle Large Floods and Storms
When storms hit Santa Clarita Valley, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.
Have Storm or Flood Damage? Do Not Hesitate to Call Us Today (661)296-4600