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IF A DISASTER STRIKES, WILL YOUR BUSINESS BE READY?

10/7/2019 (Permalink)

October can be scary, and not only if you are in the Halloween business!  Halloween is on the 31st, so social media, the news, retail businesses, and horror movies are all filled with pumpkins, spice and ghosts.  For business and homeowners alike, the “Ghost of Halloween Past” conjures up images of  the freak October snowstorm experienced by all of us in North Morris County not all that long ago.  Most business owners in the area were hit hard by hurricane Irene in 2011, and then right on its tail came the 2011 Halloween nor'easter which we all, no doubt, remember.  “Shocktober” was a large low pressure area that produced unusually early snowfall across the northeastern United States and the Canadian Maritimes.  As it moved up the East Coast, its associated snowfall broke records in at least 20 cities for total accumulations, resulting in a rare "white Halloween" two days later.

The storm arrived just two months after Hurricane Irene caused extensive power outages and property damage in the Northeast. It dumped snow on trees that were often still in leaf, adding extra weight, with the ground in some areas still soft from a preceding warm, rainy period that increased the possibility trees could be uprooted. Trees and branches that collapsed caused considerable damage, particularly to power lines, with estimates of storm costs ranging between $1 billion and $3 billion. In all, 3.2 million U.S. residences and businesses [7] in 12 states experienced power outages, with the storm also impacting three Canadian provinces. [1]

Many homes and businesses in North Morris County and surrounding areas were without power for a week!  Let this serve as a reminder to us all that we can experience severe weather every month of the year causing disruption to business and home life. This is no time to let our guard down when it comes to disaster preparedness.  Consider  the following steps to better prepare for an emergency situation.

  • Sign up for local alerts and warnings, download apps, and/or check access for wireless emergency alerts.
  • Develop and test emergency communication plans.
  • Assemble or update emergency supplies.
  • Learn about local hazards, and conduct a drill to practice emergency response actions.
  • Participate in a preparedness discussion, training, or class.
  • Collect and safeguard critical documents.
  • Plan with neighboring businesses to help each other and share resources.
  • Document property and obtain appropriate insurance for relevant hazards.
  • Improve property to reduce potential injury and property damage.

SERVPRO of North Morris County is prepared!

[1] Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_Halloween_nor%27easter

It’s never too late to be “Prepared, Not Scared.”

10/7/2019 (Permalink)

As a business owner, insurer, or property manager, you are a leader in your community and have the opportunity to set an example for your employees, customers and community to follow. If you were too busy to set some time aside during National Preparedness Month (NPM) to join your community in preparing for emergencies and disasters of all types, and lead efforts to encourage the community as a whole to become more prepared, don’t worry!  It’s not too late! “Disasters happen” and can take place any time of year,  not only devastating individuals and neighborhoods, but entire communities, including businesses of all sizes. The 2019 theme for National Preparedness Month was Prepared, Not Scared. Be Ready for Disasters. If you haven’t already done so, you can become prepared for a disaster now by taking three simple steps:  Have a plan to stay in business; Encourage your employees to become ready;  Protect your investment. We must work together as a team to ensure that our families, businesses, places of worship, and neighborhoods are ready for any type of disaster that can potentially affect our local community. At Ready.gov/business, companies like yours can find vital information on how to begin preparing your organization and addressing your unique needs during an emergency situation. Set aside some time now so you can rest assured that you are prepared.  You can also contact your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals to find out more on how to be ready when disaster strikes with the SERVPRO® Emergency READY Program

Tornadoes in New Jersey?

10/1/2019 (Permalink)

Being prepared for a tornado is something we, in North Morris County, have rarely had to think about.  Although tornadoes are rare in NJ, as of August this year there have been 8 recorded tornadoes in the state.  A tornado can be a stressful and scary situation.  Knowing what to do, as in any other weather emergency, is important and can help protect you and your family. 

The following tips are courtesy of the CDC.gov

Some tornadoes strike rapidly, without time for a tornado warning, and sometimes without a thunderstorm in the vicinity. When you are watching for rapidly emerging tornadoes, it is important to know that you cannot depend on seeing a funnel: clouds or rain may block your view.

These weather signs may mean that a tornado is approaching:

A dark or green-colored sky

A large, dark, low-lying cloud

Large hail

A loud roar that sounds like a freight train

If you notice any of these weather conditions, take cover immediately, and keep tuned to local radio and TV stations or to a NOAA weather radioExternal.

REMEMBER:  If severe weather does hit; SERVPRO of North Morris County is ready 24/7 to help you to regain control of your life!  Please call us at 973-983-5657 or visit us at http://www.SERVPROnorthmorriscounty.com/.

For additional information, visit the CDC’s website at:  https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/tornadoes/index.html

We Monitor The Moisture

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

Even small water damages at your office have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time.

The key to avoiding costly future restoration is to handle every water problem as a real threat to your property. We have the equipment, training and experience to find and dry unseen water before secondary damages occur. The proper equipment makes a measurable difference in reducing the damage expense during a fire or water loss.

When time matters, technology and equipment must be counted on to perform. We will answer your call with fast action and a full arsenal of drying equipment. Here are a few of our tools:

-Moisture Sensors are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards and walls.

-Moisture Meters are used to determine the actual moisture content of various materials. The moisture tester provides accurate readings, allowing usto monitor the drying process.

-Thermohygrometers measure temperature and relative humidity. When armed with this information, we can calculate and create an environment most conducive to drying. When facing a contaminated water loss, it is not only important to dry the structure, but the structure must also be disinfected and often deodorized.

The bottom line? We have the training and equipment to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Choosing A Fire Extinguisher

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

It is important that when choosing a fire extinguisher, you know which one to select. Here's a brief breakdown:

Class A: This is the most common extinguisher and can be used to put out fires in ordinary combustibles such as cloth, wood, rubber, paper and many plastics.

Class B: Used on fires involving flammable liquids, such as grease, gasoline and oil.

Class C: Designed for fires involving appliances, tools, or other equipment electrically energized or plugged in.

Class D: For use on flammable metals; often specific for the type of metal in question. These are typically found only in factories working with these metals.

Class K: Intended for use on fires that involve vegetable oils, animal oils, or fats in cooking appliances. These extinguishers are generally found in commercial kitchens, but are becoming more popular in the residential market for use in kitchens.

The Right Equipment Matters

9/10/2019 (Permalink)

Even small water damages at your office have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time.

The key to avoiding costly future restoration is to handle every water problem as a real threat to your property. We have the equipment, training and experience to find and dry unseen water before secondary damages occur. The proper equipment makes a measurable difference in reducing the damage expense during a fire or water loss.

When time matters, technology and equipment must be counted on to perform. We will answer your call with fast action and a full arsenal of drying equipment. Here are a few of our tools:

-Moisture Sensors are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards and walls.

-Moisture Meters are used to determine the actual moisture content of various materials. The moisture tester provides accurate readings, allowing usto monitor the drying process.

-Thermohygrometers measure temperature and relative humidity. When armed with this information, we can calculate and create an environment most conducive to drying. When facing a contaminated water loss, it is not only important to dry the structure, but the structure must also be disinfected and often deodorized.

-Ultra Low-Volume (ULV) Foggers will atomize liquid deodorizing agents, producing a fine mist that can easily penetrate the site where odor-causing residues may accumulate. This device can also be used to inject fungicides and disinfectants into wall cavities and other hard-to-reach areas.

-Thermal Foggers dispense solvent-based products by creating a dense fog. The fog consists of tiny particles of deodorant solution that attach to and neutralize odor-causing particles to deodorize structures, garments, automobiles and other places where cleaning cannot reach.

The bottom line? We have the training and equipment to make it “Like it never even happened.”

FASTER TO ANY SIZE DISASTER

8/23/2019 (Permalink)

There’s no such thing as a small disaster—especially when the water you don’t see contains bacteria or can cause mold, rot, and other unseen damage. Water damage can affect the value of your property. Before you get out the mop bucket and try to clean it yourself, consider how the damage can affect your commercial property.

We know how disruptive water damage can be for your business. Our team is trained and equipped to manage the drying process from start to finish. By utilizing the proper equipment and moisture measuring devices, your commercial building will be quickly and thoroughly dried to industry standards, which will help prevent secondary damages! With rapid response time and a full line of water cleanup and restoration services, we can help you regain control quickly, by helping to ensure your facility and its contents are properly dried, deodorized and protected.

Before you risk further damaging the value of your commercial facility by attempting to clean the mess yourself, call SERVPRO.

The Science of Drying

8/23/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know there is actually a science behind the process of drying? Having the knowledge of psychrometrics is essential to restoring a water damaged structure to its preloss condition. While your initial reaction may be to grab a few towels to mop up the mess and place a fan or two around the damaged area, our team is trained in the science of drying and follow strict industry-approved standards to help lower the chances of any secondary damages. If your business suffers a water damage, we will:

• Inspect the building to detect every component that is wet to help prevent secondary damage from happening.

• Measure how much moisture is in wet materials and monitor whether the materials are drying properly.

• Speed up Mother Nature by using professional drying equipment.

What exactly does it mean to help “speed up Mother Nature”? A wet building can often dry naturally because the environment always seeks equilibrium. When materials are wet, moisture will naturally move to drier air at the surface of the material—but only if the air is drier.

The only problem is, nature often takes too long and secondary damages may occur while the building is drying out. We have the tools and equipment to help Mother Nature along, including equipment to help dry hardwood floors, tough-to-reach spaces inside walls, and much more. At SERVPRO of North Morris County we also use state-of-the-art monitoring equipment and a proven scientific process to help speed the drying of your home or business.

It’s not only the equipment but the technology too! SERVPRO® has developed DryBook™, a proprietary tool that provides realtime documentation and updates on the drying process and helps ensure industry drying requirements are met. With DryBook™ Mobile, you have the ability to know exactly where your property is in the drying process.

The bottom line? We have the professional training and equipment to help make water damage “Like it never even happened.”

Carbon Monoxide: A Silent Killer

8/23/2019 (Permalink)

You can’t see or smell carbon monoxide, but at high levels, it can kill a person in minutes. Often called the silent killer, carbon monoxide (or CO) is an invisible, odorless, colorless gas created when fuels, like gasoline, wood, coal, natural gas, and propane burn incompletely. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, each year more than 400 Americans die from unintentional CO poisoning. It is estimated another 20,000 visit the emergency room, and more than 4,000 are hospitalized due to CO poisoning. All people and animals are at risk for CO poisoning, with some groups— including unborn babies, infants and people with chronic heart disease, anemia, or respiratory problems— being more susceptible to the effects of carbon monoxide.

An excess of CO, leading to CO poisoning, can result from faulty furnaces or other heating appliances, portable generators, water heaters, clothes dryers or idling cars left running in garages. Taking some basic, precautionary steps can help eliminate the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Protect yourself by reviewing the following tips provided by the United States Fire Administration.

• Have fuel-burning appliances, like oil and gas furnaces, gas or kerosene heaters, fireplaces, and wood stoves inspected by a trained professional every year.

• Open the damper for proper ventilation before using a fireplace. Never use your oven or stovetop to heat your home.

• Make sure all fuel-burning equipment is vented to the outside to avoid CO poisoning. Keep the venting for exhaust clear and unblocked.

• If you need to warm a vehicle, remove it from the garage immediately after starting it. Never run a vehicle or other fueling engine or motor indoors, even if garage doors are open. Make sure the exhaust pipe of a running vehicle is not blocked with snow, ice, or other materials.

• Make sure vents for the dryer, furnace, stove, and fireplace are clear of snow and other debris.

• Only use barbecue grills outside, away from all doors, windows, vents, and other building openings. Some grills can produce CO gas. Never use grills inside the home or the garage, even if the doors are open.

• Use portable generators outdoors in well-ventilated areas away from all doors, windows, vents, and other building openings to prevent exhaust fumes from entering the home.

Hurricane Season Safety Tips

7/9/2019 (Permalink)

Hurricane season started June 1st, so before it's too late, this may be a good time to review some safety tips.

1. If you live in a high wind or hurricane-prone area and do not have tested and code-approved shutters for protection from windborne debris, consider temporarily protecting your doors and windows by mounting exterior grade, 7/16" minimum thickness plywood and fastening it into place. Visit www.flash.org for detailed instructions on how to use plywood for emergency board-up.

2. Consider building or retrofitting to create a tornado-safe room in your home. Follow ICC/ NSSA 500 Standard for detailed construction information and to ensure you achieve the highest level of protection for your family.

3. In wildfire prone areas, remove fine (dead grass, leaves, etc.) and coarse (dead twigs, branches, etc.) fuels within 30 feet of a building to create a survivable space in case of wildfire. Be sure to remove dry leaf and pine litter from roofs, rain gutters, decks, and walkways. Follow ICC’s International Wildland-Urban Interface Code® for detailed requirements.

4. Flooded roads could have significant damage hidden by floodwaters. Never drive through floodwaters or on flooded roads. Do not attempt to cross a flowing stream. It takes only six inches of fastflowing water to sweep you off your feet and two feet of water to move an SUV-sized vehicle.