Fire Safety tips for the Holidays
The holiday season is an exciting time of the year for most families but that excitement can quickly be extinguished if a fire occurs in the home. The U.S. Fire Administration says that almost 47,000 fires occur during winter holidays taking more than 500 lives. The National Fire Protection Association and U.S. Fire Administration have found that 1 of every 22 home fires started by Christmas trees result in death and candle fires are four times likely to occur during the winter holidays. These are only two of several frequent occurrences during the holiday season for too many families. To help keep your family safe this season, below are some safety tips to follow.
The most common cause of household fires are from cooking. Leaving food unattended is a big reason for this. Before kicking off the holiday cooking season at Thanksgiving be sure to check all smoke detectors to make sure they’re working properly. It’s also always important to keep a fire extinguisher in the home. When you’re cooking keep all paper or plastic bags, kitchen utensils, pot holders and dish towels are kept away from the stove. If you’re going to be cooking with a deep fryer put it at least 10 feet away from your home.
Candles, decorative lights and other seasonal decorations are a big thing for decorating around the holidays. All items should be placed at least 3 ft from any type of heat sources. Prior to using decorative lights check each strand for frayed or cracked wires. Avoid hanging lights on nails or with staples as it could lead to damage to the wiring. If you’ve had lit candles, walk around your home to extinguish them at the end of the evening. The same goes for decorative lights. Prior to leaving your home or going to bed always unplug all lights.
Christmas tree fires are more likely to occur in January after the Christmas season. However, you can never be too safe following these steps to ensure your homes safety. Make sure your tree has fresh, green needles that don’t break easily. Keep your tree fresh by continuing to keep it watered. Never use candles that are lit to decorate your tree. Always unplug your tree lights before leaving for home or going to bed. Have a sturdy tree stand to ensure your tree is stable and won’t fall over.
From our SERVPRO family to yours, we're wishing everyone a safe and joyous season!
Hurricane season starts Thursday: Heres how to prepare!
“As hurricane season approaches, it is important for community members to prepare for the possibility of severe weather,” said Barry Porter, regional CEO of the Red Cross in Eastern North Carolina. “Knowledge and preparation are some of the key elements to ensure your personal safety and to help protect your family and property.”
? Have a portable radio, cellphone, TV or NOAA weather radio on hand to monitor weather conditions. Make sure you have chargers, spare batteries or rechargeable battery packs for devices.
? Know your evacuation route and have a plan to move to another location in case of evacuation or extended power outages.
? Put gas in your car before the storm begins.
? Build an emergency kit with a supply of water (one gallon per person per day); non-perishable, easy to prepare food; first aid-kit; battery-powered or hand-crank radio; flashlights and batteries; multipurpose tool; sanitation and personal hygiene items; extra clothes; copies of important documents in a zip-top bag; cellphones and chargers; extra cash; emergency contact information; blankets or sleeping bags; and a map.
? If you have pets, make sure you have a supply of water and pet food and prepare collars, leashes and carries for transport. Make sure you have rabies vaccination documents or tags and have your pet wear an ID tag, if possible.
? Homeowners who depend on well water should draw an emergency water supply in case power to electric water pumps is interrupted.
? Bring inside anything that could become a projectile in high winds. Anchor anything too big to bring inside.
? Find an interior room on the lower level of the building or home to wait out the storm unless directed to evacuate.
State Farm Insurance also recommended that people talk to their insurance agent about replacement cost coverage, flood insurance and deductibles ahead of a storm.
Officials also asked that people create an emergency plan ahead of storms, including: how to contact or find each other; setting two meeting places (one near home and another outside the neighborhood); what evacuation routes to take; pet-friendly motels and animal shelters along the route; and planning alternative routes in case roads are blocked or washed out.
Members of every household also should know the difference between a hurricane watch and a hurricane warning to be able to plan how and when to respond.
? A hurricane watch is when conditions are a threat within 48 hours. It’s time to review your hurricane plans. Get ready to act if a warning is issued and stay informed.
? A hurricane warning is when conditions are expected within 36 hours. It’s time to complete your storm preparedness and leave the area if directed to do so by authorities.
? Tropical storm watches and warnings: Take these alerts seriously. Although tropical storms have lower wind speeds than hurricanes, they often bring life-threatening flooding and dangerous winds.
To follow National Weather Service reports in the Triangle, go to www.weather.gov/rah or follow your local weather service office on social media. For the National Hurricane Center, go to www.nhc.noaa.gov or find the center on social media.
[How to get severe weather alerts on your phone]
Download the Red Cross Emergency App or the ReadyNC app for weather alerts, preparation tips and important local information. For more North Carolina emergency information, go to www.nc.gov/agency/emergency-management or follow N.C. Emergency Management on social media.
SERVPRO of Johnston county
The drip that jumped over the pan!
As you see here some one didn't considered the issues involved in drip pan maintenance and was faced with many issues and discomfort until we arrived.
As I'm sure we all are aware, summer is fast approaching. That being said, I would like everyone to stay ever vigilant of the concerns that summer brings with it when considering your AC units. Surly most of you have already kicked your units into high gear and I would like to bring to your attention the things to keep in mind - my main area of focus concerning the units are: the drip pans that stop the condensation from spilling over and damaging your home. This is an easy detail to forget especially if your unit is located in the attic. This might not seem like a major issue but you can imagine it easily slipping your mind and not realizing you have a serious problem before it's too late. Soon you will have water stains on your ceilings and ruined insulation in the attic. I urge you to check your pans quite often and from time to time check the drain lines. A few minutes of your time could save you a few hundred dollars down the road.
Thanks for tuning in,
SERVPRO of Johnston County
Churches Are Not Immune
Day Care Interrupted By Sewage Backup
Churches are not immune from the varieties of water losses that afflict resident's and other commercial structures.
Recently, we have been involved with three large churches each experiencing a serious water loss. One had a large mold situation in their education building. Another had a lift pump failure on their sewage discharge system, and, the other had a fire suppression system failure in their bell tower. Each loss was significant and impacted the operation of each of the churches.
Do not think that losses such as these cannot or will not happen at your church. You must always be vigilant.
Some helpful hints:
1. Have the church's sewage system inspeacted by a certified plumber at least once a year. If your church operates a Day Care, semiannual inspections would be appropriate.
2. If your church is plumber with fire prevention suppression systems, they should be tested annually. Make sure that the heat sensors can tolerate the level of heat that we have been experiencing recently.
3. If your church has any stand alone structues it would be wise to keep the structure air conditioned and/or heated, depending on the season. This will minimize the opportunity for mold to get started.
More to follow in the days to come.
Red Cross Continued Support
McCall's Airplane Strike
SERVPRO® Pledges Ongoing Support to the American Red Cross Disaster Responder Program
Red Cross recognizes SERVPRO for their contribution to disaster preparedness and recovery efforts
Clayton, NC (Grassroots Newswire) June 1, 2016 -- The American Red Cross recently recognized SERVPRO®, a cleanup and restoration company, for participation in its Disaster Responder Program1. As a Disaster Responder Program member, SERVPRO pledges a donation to the Red Cross in advance of disasters, allowing the organization to respond quickly and effectively to nearly 66,000 disasters annually, most of which are home fires. SERVPRO is entering their third year of partnership with the Red Cross; their donations to the organization to date exceed one million dollars.
According to statistics cited by the Red Cross, seven people die in a home fire each day in the U.S. Aiming to reduce deaths and injuries caused by home fires by 25 percent by the end of 2019, the Red Cross launched a Home Fire Campaign in October of 2014. The support of SERVPRO and other Disaster Responder Program members allows the Red Cross to pursue their home fire prevention goals while they continue to provide critical services to disaster victims.
“One of the reasons home fires account for the majority of the disasters the Red Cross responds to annually is that the risk for home fires exists all year long,” said George Hogshead, owner of SERVPRO of Johnston County. “Statistics compiled by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)2 show the majority of home fires are related to unattended cooking accidents – and cooking is something most people do every day.”
Although SERVPRO’s business is helping business and home owners recover from fire, flood and other disasters, the company and its franchisees actively support disaster preparedness education, including fire prevention efforts. When disaster does strike, their relationships with major insurance companies combined with industry-leading job-management technology help smooth the path to rebuilding and restoration for home and business owners affected by the unexpected.
“SERVPRO’s commitment to the Red Cross Disaster Responder Program means that, when disaster strikes, homeowners can count on the Red Cross to address their immediate needs and supply essential services,” said Hogshead. “Once the immediate emergency is under control, homeowners can count on the expertise of restoration specialists at SERVPRO of Johnston County to help them restore their property and move forward with their lives.”
For fire prevention tips and information about fire and water damage restoration services, please visit www.SERVPRO.com. For more information on SERVPRO® of Johnston County, please contact George Hogshead at (919) 359-2599 or GHogshead@nc.rr.com.
Continuing Our Investment
Newest Fleet Addition
With a hot, new, wrap, today we rolled out the latest addition to our fleet of services vehicles.
The message we want to convey as we roll around Johnston County is that we are continuly investing in equipment, training, and, vehicles that will enable us to deliver superior, emergency services to the citizens of Johnston County.
HONK when we pass you by to let us know how you like the new wrap.
Exterminators Are Not Mold Remediators
Numerous times throughout the year we receive calls from homes owners telling us their Pest Control Company has adviced them that they have mold in their crawl space. And, that they have a solution - "Seal the crawl space and place a dehumidifier in the area to hold down humidity."
What do exterminators and pest control businesses do? They help you manage or exterminate pests.
Are they trained mold professionals? No!
Do they understand all there is to know about controlling the environment of a crawl space? No!
Are they happy to take more of your money without sufficient justification? You betcha!
When you call us to ask for a second opinion, we will step you through a question and answer process in hopes of helping you gain an understanding of what is going on. With knowledge, there is power. Power to make the right decision.
Of course, we will come and do our own inspection and advise you accordingly. You may, indeed, have a mold issue, and, we can address it for you. But, spending additional sums for sealing and dehumidifying a crawl space is compltely unnecessary...
So, be on guard. There are local Pest Control companies that are very good at what they do. SERVPRO of Johnston County is extremely good at what it does....
When Is Mold Really Mold
Camel Cricket Poop and Pine Tar
We often get calls from folks that think they have mold in their crawl space, asking us for an estimate to remediate or clean the area. In some cases it is not necessary, because, what the home owner is actually seeing is either, camel cricket poop or hardened wood tar or both.
It looks just like mold but it's not. How can you tell?
Try rubbing the surface with your finger to determine if the spot is hard or soft and dusty. If it's hard, it's probably cricket poop or wood tar.... If you are still not certain, give us call for some advice on what to do.
There's no sense spending money if you do not have to...
Had They Only Turned Off The Water
Easter weekend is a few days away and many of us will be leaving town to visit with friends and family or just taking a brief respite from reality. The 3 and 4 day weekends like this require a little more thinking beyond packing what you want to wear.
More often than you might think, returning from a 3 or 4 day Holiday trip, it is not unusual for a home owner to find an enormous mess in their home from a sudden water leak or small fire...
Some things to think about before you close the door behind you:
1. Turn off the water to the house,
2. Make sure that all of the toilets that were flushed have refilled properly,
3. Unplug all of the appliances such as the toaster, and, coffee pot,
4. Do not turn the dishwasher on then leave,
5. Do not turn on the washing machine or dryer before you close the door behind you..
These are just a few things to think about before you jump in the car and head out. They are pretty simple and can save an avalanche of headaches when you return.
Heavy rains have caused all sorts of problems for folks in Johnston County that have basements. As the water tables rise, so does the pressure of water below the basement floor. So much so that water will pour right through the concrete.
This can overwhelm or short out a sump pump or cause back-up problems with ceptic systems. The result can be a basement full of water, and/or sewage. Neither is fun to deal with....
It happens, and, when it does, we're here to help...
2015 was a very wet year. 2016 is off to a similar start. Be sure to keep your eye on rising water.