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
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.Thunderstorm Damage
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