With the recent mass flooding and devastation within our communities, many are waiting in the queue to confirm their property damage coverage and potentially receive professional mitigation assistance from a restoration company. While you wait, below are a few pointers that may assist:
DISCLAIMER: Every property is affected by flooding differently. As a result, it’s difficult to provide specific advice for your unique home or business. Below are suggestions only and we cannot accept any liability related to the information being shared. Read the content in its entirety prior to implementing any suggestions. Please always speak with a professional or restoration specialist for their expertise if you’re unsure.
- Use caution and treat flood-affected areas of your home/building/property as contaminated. The longer water stands in a property, health risks increase due to bacteria carried in by floodwaters and mould growth.
- Persons at risk (young children and the elderly) should be isolated from the flooded area to avoid exposure to potential illness.
- Ensure there is a safe water supply and adequate sewage disposal system in operation. Check with the local water authority if unsure. It is important the property water source is safe for use, both for cleaning and drinking.
- Wear personal protective equipment (PPE) such as rubber boots, rubber gloves, eye protection, respiratory protection, and water-resistant coveralls before you work on any affected areas or handle or move water-affected materials.
- ALWAYS wash and disinfect your hands and avoid touching your mouth or eyes while working with potentially contaminated items.
YOUR BUILDING AND CONTENTS
- If the property uses a forced air furnace, turn it off until the affected areas can be cleaned and disinfected.
- Isolate any affected, or potentially contaminated areas from unaffected areas using plastic sheet barriers if possible, and poly tape across doorways or to separate spaces.
- Before you move any of your belongings or alter building materials, take photos and videos showing what has occurred and the resultant damages. Be as thorough as possible. Any areas of your property that you are working in should have before and after photography of what you touched or adjusted.
- Any property contents or building materials should be labeled or catalogued and photographed if being relocated to create an accurate inventory.
- For food – photograph, catalogue and then destroy any which may have become contaminated.
- If moving furniture is not an option, place tin foil, plastic or styrofoam under the legs, creating a barrier. Avoid using wood, metal that can rust, painted or coloured materials, as these materials could cause additional unnecessary damage to the furniture.
- Remove standing water if possible, by use of a wet/dry vac.
- Drying the structure should be left for a contractor to complete; however, you can help by turning on hood fans, bathroom fans and dehumidification, which can often be found on modern furnaces.
- Ensure to clean any affected items before you move them to an unaffected area otherwise you may cross contaminate the unaffected environment.
- You can wash and wipe down most affected areas with a solution of one part household bleach to ten parts water. This will assist in removing mould and mildew. Avoid applying this solution to any colored textiles, such as carpets and upholstery, as it could cause permanent damage.
- When wiping down affected surfaces, do not rinse and allow the surfaces to dry for a minimum of 10 minutes.
For further guidance please contact On Side Restoration.