Recent Posts

Fire Prevention Month: Smoke Alarm Safety

10/21/2021 (Permalink)

Hand reaching to smoke alarm 3 out of 5 fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.

Source: National Fire Protection Association 

In keeping with fire prevention month, here are some things you should know about smoke alarms. The first thing you need to know is that 3 out of 5 fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.

Smoke alarms are a key part of a home fire escape plan. When there is a fire, smoke spreads fast. Working smoke alarms give you early warning so you can get outside quickly.

SAFETY TIPS

  • Install smoke alarms in every bedroom. They should also be outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home. Install alarms in the basement.
  • Large homes may need extra smoke alarms.
  • It is best to use interconnected smoke alarms. When one smoke alarm sounds, they all sound.
  • Test all smoke alarms at least once a month.
    Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.
  • Current alarms on the market employ different types of technology including multi-sensing, which could include smoke and carbon monoxide combined.
  • Today’s smoke alarms will be more technologically advanced to respond to a multitude of fire conditions, yet mitigate false alarms.
  • A smoke alarm should be on the ceiling or high on a wall. Keep smoke alarms away from the kitchen to reduce false alarms. They should be at least 10 feet (3 meters) from the stove.
  • People who are hard-of-hearing or deaf can use special alarms. These alarms have strobe lights and bed shakers.
  • Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old. 

If you do have fire damage at your home or place of business, call SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast at 94.729.2401.

How to Prevent Mold Problems in Jacksonville and North Florida

10/14/2021 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a wall in Fernandina Beach. If you have mold issues, call SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville NE at 904.729.2401.

When you live in a subtropical area, like Florida, the high humidity can cause mold damage, even without leaky pipes or a damaged roof. Here are some tips to follow to control humidity to prevent mold problems:

The level suggested for the interior relative humidity of your home is 60 percent or less to discourage mold growth. Do not guess to maintain this level. Invest in a good quality hygrometer to be certain your humidity levels are within the parameters that will discourage mold growth. 

To reduce the moisture content of the air within your home, make sure all exhaust fans are working properly in high moisture generating rooms like the kitchen, bathroom, and laundry areas. Be sure all family members are using them regularly when cooking, showering, and washing clothes.

Dryers should vent to the outdoors. Remember to run air conditioners regularly as they remove moisture from the air. Do not use vaporizers or humidifiers in the house. If all of these measures do not reduce the humidity to proper levels, invest a dehumidifier to reach and then maintain that 60 percent standard. Be sure all equipment used to reduce humidity is checked for proper drainage of the water removed from the air. Empty the water condensed as needed or set up the machine to discharge into a sink or drain.

Following these steps will help to prevent mold issues.

If you do experience mold problems, SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast is a Florida-Licensed Mold Remediator. Our license number is MRSR450. A licensed contractor has the training, expertise and experience required to do the job well, safely and to code.

If you have mold issues call, us at 904.729.2401. We’ll make it "Like it never even happened.”

What is Mitigation and Why Is It So Important?

10/6/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO technician extracting water at an assisted living facility in Jacksonville  Mitigation lessens the impact of water damage.

The definition of mitigation, according to FEMA it is, “the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters.” Specifically, water mitigation is a process that reduces or prevents the amount of damage that can be caused by water after a leak, storm, burst pipe, or flood.

These efforts are most effective when mitigation is performed as soon as possible! Why? When water sits in a damaged area for extended lengths of time, the risk for more damage increases drastically. Sitting water can lead to microbial growth, cracks in foundation, irreversible content damage, carpet/flooring damage, etc.

Unfortunately, water-related disasters can occur at any time. The costs and effects of water damage are unpredictable, which is why it is important to begin the mitigation process in a timely manner.

There are several steps you can take while you wait for our highly-trained crews to arrive;

  1. Try to close the main water source or shut off any water sources that may be causing the flooding
  2. Please stay away from any electrical devices. Shut down your electric breaker to prevent any injuries
  3. If you can safely gain access, take any curtains or draperies away from water or any wet carpet
  4. If you can safely gain access, remove items that may cause stain to your wet carpet such as, fabrics, books, papers, plants and shoes. DO NOT place newspaper on wet carpet to walk on as ink transfers very easily to wet carpet fibers. Avoid walking on carpet as much as possible                                                                                

Step 1: Emergency Contact to our office staff will guide you through several important questions that will allow our crews to respond more quickly and efficiently to avoid spreading the affected area                                         

Step 2: SERVPRO arrival , our crews will begin SERVPRO's unique water mitigation process. SERVPRO’s process contains a specialized set of steps to ensure property value is restored to normal

Step 3 : Inspection and Damage Assessment-Once on scene, our crews scrupulously inspect your property’s water damage, which will help them determine the type of water damage and the areas that are affected

Step 4 : Water Extraction-Hundreds of gallons of water are removed using our powerful pumps and vacuums.

Step 5 : Drying and Dehumidification-After the bulk of the water has been removed, our crews use specialized equipment to target any water that is harder to access. Our crews implement a scientific drying method to extract any remaining water and moisture using air movers and dehumidifiers.

Step 6 : Cleaning and Sanitizing-Since water damage also affects belongings, furniture, clothes and many other personal items, our crews will clean restorable items through a process of specialized techniques. Our crews will also sanitize with antimicrobial treatments and remove any odors using air scrubbers and fogging equipment

Step 7 : Restoration-This is our last step to ensuring your home or business returns to its pre-water damage condition. This step can be as minor as replacing some drywall panels or as major as reconstruction.

SERVPRO’s primary job is to keep the damage caused by the water at a minimum and restore the value of the property to make it, “Like it never even happened.”

If you have water damage, call SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast at  (904) 729-2401 immediately. We’re available 24/7.

How To Make a Fire Escape Plan

10/1/2021 (Permalink)

firefighters on a roof with flames billowing out of it Having a home fire escape plan will reduce the chance of fire-related injuries.

Source: National Fire Protection Association

Since October is Fire Prevention Month, we thought it would be a good time to discuss fire escape plans.

On average, there are 358,000 home fires each year in the U.S. with 12,300 injuries. Having a home fire escape plan will reduce the chance of fire-related injuries. Follow these steps to create yours. 

  • Draw a map of your home. Show all doors and windows.
  • Mark all of the smoke alarms with “SA”. Smoke alarms should be in each sleeping room, outside each sleeping area, and on every level of the home.
  • Visit each room. Find two ways out.
  • All windows and doors should open easily. You should be able to use them to get outside.
  • Make sure your home has smoke alarms. Push the test button to make sure each alarm is working.
  • Pick a meeting place outside. It should be in front of your home. Everyone will meet at the meeting place.
  • Make sure your house or building number can be seen from the street.
  • Talk about your plan with everyone in your home.
  • Learn the emergency phone number for your fire department.
  • Practice your home fire drill!

If you suffer smoke or fire damage to your home, SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast can help. Call us at 904.729.2401.

Flood Tips: What you can do until help arrives

9/21/2021 (Permalink)

flooded basement with water at foot of stairs with open door If your home is flooded your first consideration is whether it is safe to be inside the home

After any water damage situation, your primary focus should be safety first:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
  • Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!

What To Do After Flooding

  • Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
  • Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
  • Gather loose items from floors.

What NOT To Do After Flooding

  • Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
  • Don't leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
  • Don't use your household vacuum to remove water.
  • Don't use television or other household appliances.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.

Have A  Water Damage Emergency? Call SERVPRO Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast at 904.729.2401.

Managing Mold in Northeast Florida

9/15/2021 (Permalink)

mold containment area with technician in background Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property.

When there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business. Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property. Fortunately, SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast staff has the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem. Although every mold damage scenario is different requiring a unique solution, the general mold remediation process stays the same. Here are steps illustrating the “typical” mold removal process.

Call Us

The mold cleanup and restoration process begins when you call us. Our customer service representative will ask a series of questions to help determine the necessary equipment resources, and personnel needed.

Inspection & Damage Assessment

Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold using technology designed to detent mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view.

Mold Containment

Various containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold and isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process.

Air Filtration

Specialized filtration equipment captures microscopic mold spores out of the air. Our technicians use powerful air scrubbers and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in progress.

Removing Mold

The mold remediation process depends on the amount of mold growth and the types of surfaces on which the mold appears. Antifungal and antimicrobial treatments are used to eliminate mold colonies and help prevent new colonies from forming. Removing and disposing of mold-infested porous materials, like drywall and flooring, may be necessary to remediate heavy mold growth.

Contents & Belongings

We clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, and other restorable items affected by mold. We use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. We also remove odors and deodorize using fogging equipment.

Restoration

Depending on the level of mold damage, drywall, subfloors, and other building materials may be removed. Restoration may involve minor repairs such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home.

You can be confident that our professionals understand mold growth and have the training and equipment to remediate mold in your home. Call SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast at 904.729.2401.

Precautions for Fire Safety

9/9/2021 (Permalink)

graphic with SERVPRO logo over fire and water If you have fire damage, call SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast at 904.729.2401. We're Here to Help!

According to the National Fire Protection Association, in the U.S., we have an average of 353,100 house fires a year. A house fire can be one of the most damaging, and difficult situations to recover from. It not only carries the physical implications of a damaged building structure but also the emotional strain of losing cherished belongings. For us at SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast, restoring hope is just as important as restoring your property. If we can help it, we would rather that you don’t experience these losses altogether. Here are some tips to prevent the top causes of a house fire.

Smoking

Smoking is the number one cause of home fire deaths in the U.S. If you smoke, it is best to do so outside. A cigarette should be completely put out before going to bed, and never smoke in bed. And always keep smoking materials away from kids.

Electrical fire

The leading causes of electrical fires in a home are old appliances and faulty electrical outlets. Regularly inspect the electrical cords from your appliances, and never alter the prongs on a plug. Avoid having electrical cords ran underneath a carpet and when you are unplugging a cord, be sure to hold the plug securely and not the cord. Unplugging a cord from a wall by pulling the cord can cause it to fray and possibly lead to a fire.

Cooking

Cooking fires are the leading types of home fires in the U.S.. Most often these fires are caused by unattended cooking. Be sure to never leave food while the source of heat is still active. Be aware of combustible material, and keep it away from anything cooking. Double-check ovens and stovetops once cooking is done to ensure they are turned off.

If you have experienced fire damage, please don’t hesitate to contact us at 904.729.2401. We have the experience and expertise to restore your property and belongings.

September is National Preparedness Month. Are You Ready?

8/31/2021 (Permalink)

graphic with cloud background and the text "Be Smart. Prepare." Here are some tips to help you in getting ready for the most active month in our Atlantic hurricane season.

As we enter the most active month of hurricane season, this week we are sharing some very helpful information on National Preparedness Month from FEMA. National Preparedness Month is an observance every September to raise awareness about the importance of preparing for disasters and emergencies that could happen at any time. The 2021 theme is: “Prepare to Protect. Preparing for disasters is protecting everyone you love.”

Each week in September, the NPM campaign focuses on a different aspect of preparedness for individuals, families, and communities. Follow the links below for detailed information on each week’s topic. 

WEEK ONE (September 1-4): Make A Plan. Talk to your friends and family about how you will communicate before, during, and after a disaster. Make sure to update your plan based on the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations due to COVID and the Delta variant

WEEK TWO (September 5-11): Build An Emergency  Kit. Gather supplies that will last for several days after a disaster for everyone living in your home. Don’t forget to consider the unique needs each person or pet may have in case you have to evacuate quickly. Update your kits and supplies based on recommendations by the CDC.

WEEK THREE (September 12-18): Low-Cost, No-Cost Preparedness. Limit the impacts that disasters have on you and your family. Know the risk of disasters in your area. Learn how to make your home stronger in the face of storms and other common hazards. Check your insurance coverage to make sure it is active and updated.

WEEK FOUR {September 19-25}: Teach Kids About Preparedness. Talk to your kids about preparing for emergencies and what to do in case you are separated. Reassure them by providing information about how they can get involved.

Stay safe this hurricane season, and remember that SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast is Here to Help if you have storm damage. Call us at 904.729.2401.

Employees Complete IICRC-Approved Water Damage Restoration Technician (WRT) Course

8/25/2021 (Permalink)

From left, Josh Hortman and Alyssa Corbitt standing in front of SERVPRO van and displaying IICRC certification.    We congratulate Josh and Alyssa for successfully completing the WRT certification and adding to their skill sets!  

In keeping with the company goal of employing only the most highly trained personnel, two SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast employees successfully completed the WRT (Water Damage Restoration Training) Course recently. The three-day course was held in Jacksonville and is a prerequisite for other approved courses offered by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC).

Josh Hortman and Alyssa Corbitt attended the training courses and passed the exam; The WRT Certification Exam is comprised of 140 multiple choice questions. 

The IICRC-approved Water Damage Restoration Technician (WRT) course is designed to teach restoration personnel that perform remediation work to give them a better understanding of water damage, its effects and techniques for drying of structures. This course gives residential and commercial restoration personnel the background to understand the procedures necessary to deal with water losses, sewer backflows, and contamination such as mold.

When coupled with additional on-the-job training and field experience, students will be prepared to perform and document typical residential or light commercial water-damage restoration projects from start to finish. They also should be adequately prepared to accomplish further training in other areas such as ASD (Applied Structural Drying) and (AMRT) Applied Microbial Remediation Technician, which require WRT (Water Damage Restoration Technician) as a prerequisite.

Covered Topics Include:

  • General Discussion covers Principles of Drying, Categories and Classes.
  • Equipment, Supplies, Chemicals
  • Microorganisms, Health and Safety
  • Drying Science
  • Effect of Water on Materials
  • Inspections
  • Procedures: Sanitary Water Source
  • Procedures: Unsanitary Water

 
Continuing Education:  
The IICRC continuing education program seeks to encourage registrants to actively participate in their industry through conventions, workshops and specialized training with continuing education and by sharing knowledge with others in the industry. IICRC-certified cleaning and restoration technicians face many changes in their field and require two credits every four years.

Fire Extinguisher FAQs

8/18/2021 (Permalink)

 A SERVPRO employee, Josh Hortman, holding a fire extinguisher, demonstrating its proper use. Josh Hortman demonstrates proper use of a fire extinguisher.

Having an in-date fire extinguisher on your property is important to fire safety, but did you know that there are different kinds of fire extinguishers, as well as a proper way in which to use one?  Keeping yourself, your family, and your property protected in the event of a structure fire is paramount, and the following information can help facilitate that process.

Q:  What are the different kinds of fire extinguishers, and what is each used for?

A:  The U.S. Fire Administration defines five primary types of fire extinguishers used to put out different kinds of fires:

  1. A – used for ordinary material fires, such as wood, cloth, or paper.
  2. B – for use with combustible or flammable liquids like grease, gasoline, or oil.
  3. C – for use with electrical equipment like appliances and tools.
  4. D – for use with flammable metals.
  5. K – for use with animal oils, vegetable oils, and fats in cooking appliances.

Many fire extinguishers may also be multipurpose, in that they carry multiple letter definitions and can put out a variety of material fires.

Q:  What is the proper way to use a fire extinguisher?

A: The U.S. Fire Administration suggests the acronym “PASS” as a means of properly discharging a fire extinguisher:

     P - Pull the pin. Hold the extinguisher with the nozzle pointing away from you and release the locking mechanism.

     A - Aim low. Point the extinguisher at the base of the fire.

     S - Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly

     S - Sweep the nozzle from side to side

To keep yourself safe, it is important to use extreme caution within a fire damaged structure.  SERVPRO of Fernandina Beach/Jacksonville Northeast offers a full line of fire clean up and restoration services, and we are Here to Help when you need us.  Give us a call at 904-729-2401 to learn more.