Recent Storm Damage Posts
Earthquakes: Drop, Cover, Hold On
Before an Earthquake
- Develop a family communications plan.
- Make a Ready kit for at least three days of self-sufficiency.
- Secure cabinets, bookcases and mirrors to wall studs. Avoid installing bookcases next to beds, since heavily loaded structures could fall causing significant injury or death.
- Do NOT hang pictures over the bed.
- Strap any gas or electric water heater to wall studs. A broken gas line can cause a fire, while a knocked over or ruptured tank could cause damage or scalding.
- Store hazardous or flammable materials safely. If a container of flammable liquid spills during an earthquake, any source of flame may ignite the fluid and start a fire.
- Loss of contact with the foundation is a major source of damage in many large earthquakes. Bolt house to foundation, if possible. Houses in the Southeast are built to stand upright and may not withstand shaking.
- Consider having chimneys, roofs, and walls checked for stability. Bricks from chimneys and wall facings if not secured can fall and cause significant damage or injury.
- Keep insurance policies up-to-date and stored safely. Determine if earthquake insurance is right for you.
During an Earthquake - Drop, Cover, Hold On
- Drop to the ground fast, otherwise the earthquake shaking may knock you down uncontrollably.
- Cover yourself below a strong table or desk. Falling objects and collapsing structures cause many of the injuries and deaths during an earthquake. In addition, cover your head and face to protect them from broken glass and falling objects.
- Hold onto a table or desk and be prepared to move with it. Hold your position until the shaking stops.
- Do NOT run outside or use the stairways or elevators during the shaking. The entrance ways of buildings and homes are particularly dangerous because of falling bricks and debris.
After an Earthquake
- When tremors STOP, vacate premises immediately until it is safe to return.
- Look for and eliminate fire hazards that can cause further damage.
- Follow your communications plan to locate and connect with family and loved ones.
- Check your building for cracks and structural damage.
- Take photos to record damage before you clean up or make repairs.
- Move valuables to a safe, weatherproof location.
- Review your insurance coverage and report claims promptly.
- Collect inventory records, appraisals and photographic records.
- Use licensed professionals to conduct inspections and repair your home.
- Look for ways to better prepare your home for earthquakes as you repair or rebuild.
* Courtesy of http://ready.ga.gov/be-informed/earthquakes/
Preparing for a Flood
Flooding can happen fast in many environments. The American Red Cross recommends having the following list of items packed and ready to go in the event of an evacuation due to flooding.
- Water—3+ day supply; one gallon per person per day
- Food—3+ day supply of nonperishable, easy-to-prepare food
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
- Extra batteries
- First Aid kit
- Medications (7-day supply) and medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)
- Multi-purpose tool
- Sanitation/personal hygiene items
- Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, deed/lease to home, birth certificates, insurance policies)
- Cell phone with chargers
- Family and emergency contact information
- Extra cash
- Emergency blanket
- Map(s) of the area
- Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
- Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
- Tools/supplies for securing your home
- Extra set of car keys and house keys
- Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
- Rain gear
- Insect repellent and sunscreen
- Camera for photos of damage
If flooding ever plagues your home or business, call SERVPRO of Troup-Coweta Counties at 770-253-8972 to make it "Like it never even happened."
*Courtesy of Restoration Newsline Vol 28, Issue 3
Did You Know...Generator Safety
If you have a generator on hand for power outages during severe weather, follow the safety tips below from the American Red Cross:
- Never use a generator, grill, camp stove, or other gasoline, propane, natural gas, or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, basement, crawl space, or any partially enclosed area.
- To avoid electrocution, keep the generator dry and do not use in rain or wet conditions. Operate it on a dry surface under an open canopy-like structure, such as under a tarp held up on poles. Do not touch the generator with wet hands.
- Opening doors and windows or using fans will not prevent carbon monoxide (CO) buildup in the home. Although CO can’t be seen or smelled, it can rapidly lead to full incapacitation and death. Even if you cannot smell exhaust fumes, you may still be exposed to CO. If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak while using a generator, get to fresh air immediately.
- Install CO alarms in central locations on every level of your home or property and outside sleeping areas to provide early warning of accumulating carbon monoxide.
Severe Weather Safety
Severe weather can happen any time, anywhere. Each year, Americans cope with an average of the following intense storms*:
- 10,000 severe thunderstorms
- 5,000 floods or flash floods
- 1,300 tornadoes
- 2 land-falling deadly hurricanes
Approximately 98 percent of all presidentially declared disasters are weather-related, leading to around 650 deaths per year and nearly $15 billion in damage.* Knowing your risk of severe weather, taking action, and being an example are just a few steps you can take to be better prepared to save your life and assist in saving the lives of others.
Know Your Risk.
The first step to becoming weather-ready is to understand the type of hazardous weather that can affect where you live and work, and how the weather could impact you, your business, and your family. Check the weather forecast regularly, obtain a NOAA Weather Radio, and learn about Wireless Emergency Alerts. Severe weather comes in many forms, and your shelter plan should include all types of local hazards.
Take the next step in severe weather preparedness by creating a communications plan for your home and business. Put together or purchase an emergency kit. Keep important papers and valuables in a safe place.
Be an Example.
Once you have taken action to prepare for severe weather, share your story with co-workers and family and friends on Facebook or Twitter. Your preparedness story will inspire others to do the same.
Contact SERVPRO® of Troup-Coweta Counties for more readiness tips and tools, including SERVPRO’s Emergency READY Profile® (ERP). Having an ERP in place for your facility can help minimize business interruption in the event of a disaster.
SERVPRO® of Troup-Coweta Counties can help you be “Ready for whatever happens!”
*Facts and figures provided by noaa.gov
**Courtesy of Restoration Newsline Vol 29, Iss 3
When Storms or Floods Hit...
SERVPRO of Troup-Coweta Counties 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 Floods and Storms
When storms hit, 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? Call Us Today 770-253-8972
Be Flood Smart
Floods are one of the most common and widespread natural disasters in the United States. Whether your home or business is near a coastline, along city streets, in the mountains, near a river or even in the desert-there is always potential for flood damage. Floodsmart.gov reports, in the last five years, all 50 states have experienced floods or flash floods.
According to the American Red Cross (ARC), floods cause more damage in the U.S. every year than any other weather-related disaster. The ARC offers the following flood safety tips.
- Stay away from floodwaters. If you come up on a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, turn around and go another way. Six inches of swiftly moving water can sweep you off of your feet.
- If you approach a flooded road while driving, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.
- Keep children out of the water. They are curious and often lack judgment about running water or contaminated water.
If a flood does strike your home or business, contact SERVPRO® of Troup-Coweta Counties. Even minor floods have the potential to cause major damage to a structure when not treated quickly and properly, and the cleanup is often an overwhelming task. The SERVPRO® System is prepared to handle any size disaster. When fire and water take control of your life, SERVPRO® of Troup-Coweta Counties will help you take it back.
* Courtesy of Restoration Newsline Vol 30, Iss 3
Hurricane Season is Here
It may seem early, but hurricane season is currently underway. For the Atlantic, the season begins June 1 and runs through November 30. The Eastern Pacific hurricane season began in mid-May and also ends November 30.
Hurricanes can be life-threatening as well as cause serious property threatening hazards such as flooding, storm surge, high winds, and tornadoes. While the primary threat is in coastal areas, many inland areas can also be affected by these hazards, as well as by secondary events such as power outages as a result of high winds and landslides due to rainfall.
Preparation is the best protection against the dangers of a hurricane. Plan an evacuation route and your emergency plan, take inventory of your property, and take steps to protect your home or business. For more information and preparation tips, visit the Ready campaign website at www.ready.gov/hurricanes.
*Courtesy of Restoration Newsline Vol 29, Iss 6
A Salute to First Responders
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” This famous Mr. Rogers quote comes to mind when we celebrate first responders: those who arrive first on the scene of any disaster or emergency.
In the event of a disaster or emergency, there are many different agencies and people in your community who are ready to respond. Whether it’s a house fire or a hurricane, we are thankful every day for these first responders.
Firefighters, EMTs, and Police
Local fire and police departments, as well as Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs), are often first on the scene of an emergency. In the U.S., there are more than 29,700 fire departments with 1,160,450 total firefighters, according to the National Fire Protection Association’s 2015 U.S. Fire Department Profile.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are almost 245,000 EMTs and paramedics in the U.S. In the U.S. there are about 18,000 federal, state, county, and local law enforcement agencies, employing more than 750,000 fulltime sworn officers, according to the Uniformed Crime Reporting Program collected by the FBI.
When events such as natural disasters strike, different branches of the military are often a first line of response. The Army National Guard and Air National Guard, with over 342,000 soldiers, respond domestically when deployed by their state Governor, often during states of emergency from weather-related events. They can also be called upon during terrorist attacks or civil unrest, or called overseas by the President of the United States.
Active duty soldiers can also be called upon for certain domestic events as well.
FEMA Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)
As a part of FEMA’s Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), these volunteers are trained to be prepared for any disasters that may affect your local area in an effort to support professional responders. CERT volunteers are trained in “basic disaster response skills such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations,” according to FEMA.
With more than 2,700 CERT programs, over 600,000 individuals have been trained nationwide. Teams are managed locally, but supported nationally by FEMA.
SERVPRO® of Troup-Coweta Counties recognizes these and the countless other first responders in our communities for keeping our communities safe.
*Courtesy of Restoration Newsline Vol 29, Iss 4