Recent Posts

BECAUSE HOARDING IS A SERIOUS SITUATION

3/18/2019 (Permalink)

According to The Mayo Clinic, “Hoarding disorder
is a persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions because of a perceived need to save
them. A person with hoarding disorder experiences distress at the thought of getting rid of the items. Excessive accumulation of items, regardless of actual value, occurs.” Many people with hoarding disorder do not find their habits to be a problem.

Hoarded items are often things others would throw away or look at as junk or garbage such as old newspapers, junk mail or packaging.

Hoarding can lead to homes filled with extreme clutter to full capacity from years of accumulation, making living conditions unsanitary and crowded. Bugs, fleas, rats and other vermin may be present, at which point an exterminator would need to be called. At times, hoarding may spread to outside the home as well, to storage facilities, or even the garage or yard.

SERVPRO® Franchises encounter hoarding situations several different ways. Often, a SERVPRO® Franchise is called for a fire or water loss and find the hoarding situation when they arrive on-site. A SERVPRO® Franchise Professional will communicate with the insurance company regarding their contents coverage, and after approval, contents can be packed out and possibly cleaned, dried, and stored by the SERVPRO® Franchise, or relocated to a storage facility so work on the fire or water loss can begin.

Another way SERVPRO® Franchises encounter hoarding jobs is through calls from landlords, case workers, real estate agents, or family members, often after the death of a loved one. In these situations, the crew will see if they should look for any items of importance while they clean the job. Sometimes, family members will come and try to help the hoarder sort through their contents as well.

Each case is very different, and hoarding jobs are often sensitive situations, but SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals are here to help make it “Like it never even happened.” If you encounter a
hoarding situation at one of your properties, or with your insureds, call your local SERVPRO® today.

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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Outdoor entertaining

3/11/2019 (Permalink)

Source: https://www.nfpa.org

Summer outdoor parties are some of the best events of the year.

The warm balmy nights, food cooking on the grill, and friends and family spending quality time together in the backyard or around the pool create wonderful memories that last a lifetime. But, hosting outdoor events also means there’s an increased risk of home fires.

Fortunately, following some simple safety tips and guidelines can help ensure you and your guests stay safe. Consider the following when you host your next outdoor event: 

  • Have an adult present at all times when a portable fireplace is burning
  • Use sturdy candle holders that won’t tip over easily
  • Keep anything that can burn, as well as children and pets, at least three feet away from open flames
  • Use battery-operated flameless candles and solar-powered patio (tiki) torches in place of an open flame. Flameless candles come in all colors, shapes and sizes, and many are scented. Flameless candles look and feel like the real ones, and add a beautiful soft glow to any outdoor event.

Outdoor entertaining by the numbers

  • Outside fireplaces or fire pits caused nearly 3,700 grass and brush fires
  • Total outdoor patio heater or fire pit injuries has nearly tripled in six years (1,330 to 3,608) from 2006 – 2012
  • More than half of all candle fires start when things that can burn are too close to the candle
  • An average of 8,800 home fires involved grills, hibachis, or barbecues each year
  • In 2012, sparklers, fountains and novelties accounted for 25% of emergency room fireworks-related injuries.

More outdoor entertaining information

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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Ready for whatever happens

3/6/2019 (Permalink)

When a storm or disaster strikes, SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team® is poised and “Ready for whatever happens.” With a network of more than 1,700 Franchises, the SERVPRO® System strives to be faster to any size disaster. Strategically located throughout the United States, SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team® is trained and equipped to handle the largest storms
and highest flood waters. Providing experience, manpower, equipment, and other resources, the Disaster Recovery Team® assists your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals. SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team® has responded to hundreds of disaster events. In the aftermath of a disaster, there is only one objective, to help you make it “Like it never even happened.”

2017 Hurricane Harvey: Category 4 Hurricane Harvey hit Texas on August 26 with winds of 130 mph.The hurricane made a second landfall just hours later and lingered over Southeast Texas for about two days, dropping more than 40 inches of rain. On August 29, Harvey made a third landfall in Louisiana. Following the storm, an estimated 550 storm crews were deployed, representing more than 240 SERVPRO® Franchises. Those numbers, in addition to area Franchises, placed more than 1,000 crews in storm-affected areas. Crews traveled from as far away as California, Washington, Wisconsin, and New York.

2016 Houston, TX, Flooding: In April, a nearly stationary mesoscale convective system developed over Houston, resulting in widespread rainfall rates of 2-4 inches per hour. This was a historic flooding event for Harris County, which saw a total of nearly 18 inches of accumulated rainfall. The Storm Team dispatched 81 crews to over 360 jobs, mitigating over $3 million in damages.

2015 Siberian Express: Record sub-zero temperatures caused major problems for a large portion of the country stretching from Florida to Maine. The Midwest also experienced record-breaking low temperatures, resulting in frozen pipes and ice dams causing major problems for residents. The Storm Team dispatched a total of 257 crews from 108 Franchises to assist local SERVPRO® Franchises, completing nearly 2,000 jobs.

2014 Mid-Atlantic Flooding: Rainfall rates up to 2 inches per hour caused major flash flooding stretching from Northeast Ohio all the way up to Portland, Maine. Eastern Michigan and Baltimore, Maryland, were also impacted, creating over 1,381 jobs for the Storm Team to produce. A total of 82 SERVPRO® Franchises and 173 crews mitigated over $4.3 million in damages while assisting the local Franchises.

2014 Polar Vortex: Record low temperatures caused by a break in the North Pole’s polar vortex resulted in an unprecedented freezing event, spanning from east of the Rocky Mountains to as far south as Central Florida, affecting all or part of
39 states and 70 percent of the SERVPRO® Franchise System.

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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The Science of Water Damage Drying

2/27/2019 (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, SERVPRO® of Northern Sussex County professionals are trained in the science of drying and follow strict industry approved standards to help lower the chances of any secondary damages. If your home or business suffers a water damage, SERVPRO® of Northern Sussex County Professionals 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, indeed, drier. Th e only problem is, nature takes too long and secondary damages may occur while the building is drying out.

SERVPRO® of Northern Sussex County Professionals have the tools and equipment to help Mother Nature along, including equipment to help dryhardwood floors, tough-to-reach spaces inside walls (pictured below), and much more. SERVPRO® of Northern Sussex County Professionals also use state-of-the-art monitoring equipment, and a proven scientific process to help speed the drying of your home or business.

The bottom line?  SERVPRO® of Northern Sussex County Professionals have the training and equipment to help make water damage “Like it never even happened.”

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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FASTER TO ANY SIZE DISASTER

2/22/2019 (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 property.

SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals know how disruptive water damage can be for your business. Your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals are trained and equipped to manage the drying process. By utilizing the proper equipment and moisture measuring devices, your building will be quickly and thoroughly dried to industry standards, which will help prevent secondary water damages. With rapid response time and a full line of water cleanup and restoration services, SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals 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 facility by attempting to clean the mess yourself, call your local water damage cleanup and restoration professionals.

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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Home fire sprinklers

2/15/2019 (Permalink)

Source: https://www.nfpa.org

Home fire sprinklers can dramatically reduce the heat, flames, and smoke produced in a fire. Properly installed and maintained fire sprinklers help save lives.

Fire sprinklers have been around for more than a century, protecting commercial and industrial properties and public buildings. What many people don't realize is that the same life-saving technology is also available for homes, where roughly 80 percent of all civilian fire deaths occur.

NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative and the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition

NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative outlines proven, effective ways that home fire sprinkler advocates can communicate the impact of sprinklers to their decision makers. Visit the initiative's site for free resources for the fire service and other sprinkler advocates, including fact sheets, videos, a free monthly newsletter, research, and our "Faces of Fire"campaign, which features real people demonstrating the need for home fire sprinklers.

The Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition (HFSC) is a leading resource for accurate, noncommercial information and materials about home fire sprinklers for consumers, the fire service, builders, and other professionals.

Free resources

Facts about home fire sprinklers

Automatic sprinklers are highly effective and reliable elements of total system designs for fire protection in buildings. According to NFPA's "U.S. Experience with Sprinklers" report

  • the civilian death rate was 81 percent lower in homes with fire sprinklers than in homes without them.
  • the average firefighter injury rate was nearly 80 percent lower when fire sprinklers were present during fires.
  • when sprinklers were present, fires were kept to the room of origin 97 percent of the time.
  • the home fire death rate was 90 percent lower when fire sprinklers and hardwired smoke alarms were present. By comparison, this death rate is only 18 percent lower when battery-powered smoke alarms are present but automatic extinguishing systems weren't.

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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Real Quotes from Real Customers

2/10/2019 (Permalink)

“Our water heater burst in our home, resulting in tremendous water damage to our condo and many of the surrounding units in our building. What a nightmare for anyone to go through, but in this case the shining star for us was SERVPRO®!

Carlos was called in and immediately, we all were taken by his professionalism and follow through from start to finish! He worked tirelessly and very closely with our building board members and the insurance companies on the details from the early estimates, to reviews, and right on through construction. He and his staff were simply the very best. He and his contractors exceeded our expectations in every way!”
-Jerry

“There are not enough good words to describe SERVPRO’s service and the technician who took care of us after our entire living room flooded after the heavy rains. What a blessing he was! Our insurance denied the claim, since we had no flood ‘coverage.’

Our technician came in, studied the situation, and got right to work! He answered all questions we had and quoted a reasonable cost. He returned yesterday to remove the equipment, and again, he was very punctual, professional, and compassionate!

Yes, compassionate, which is often hard to find in a service industry and in a man so young! “I want y’all to know that our tech was the voice of calm in this crisis (or what felt like a crisis to us)! Thank you so much for your high-quality work, the reasonable pricing, and especially for our technician. We will be more than happy to refer anyone to SERVPRO®!”
-Steve and Susan

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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Document Restoration

2/3/2019 (Permalink)

As a leader in the restoration industry, SERVPRO® knows timely mitigation is the key to reducing severity and recovering damaged items. Water– or smoke–damaged paper can rapidly deteriorate. Without proper handling, valuable files and irreplaceable documents could be lost forever. Let SERVPRO’s Document Restoration Team help you recover your damaged paper goods before it is too late.

SERVPRO’s technicians are trained to use the most advanced technology available for document recovery and drying; in fact, the Document Restoration Team uses the same technique the Library of Congress uses to dry water-damaged books.

Vacuum Freeze Drying?

Vacuum freeze drying is the most efficient and effective way to salvage water-damaged documents. The Document Restoration Team uses
sublimation—turning a solid directly into a vapor, skipping the liquid stage to avoid causing more damage to the documents. This process can recover even the most delicate items—from documents to photographs and x-rays, to entire business archives.

All employees of the Document Restoration Team are HIPAA Master certified and once your items arrive at the SERVPRO® facility, 24/7 video surveillance is guaranteed.

Digitizing

With the new age of technology, digitizing records and documents has become a standard practice in most industries. This eliminates the need to have massive file storage rooms and allows us to access records at the click of a button. If your file room was damaged by water or smoke and needs to be cleaned, dried or decontaminated, digitizing might be a good choice to eliminate the need to have hundreds or even thousands of documents and records in storage.

Gamma Irradiation

Gamma irradiation is a process used for cleaning/disinfecting and decontaminating documents or other consumer goods.

In a CAT 3 situation (sewage or flood water), documents are not only deteriorating but are also infected with all types of bacteria. In most storm situations, you are dealing with CAT 3 water; therefore, most of the affected documents you encounter will be contaminated.

If this is the case, decontamination is always a must. In living cells, these disruptions result in damage to the DNA and other cellular structures. These photoninduced changes at the molecular level cause the death of the organism or render the organism incapable of reproduction. The gamma process does not create residuals or impart radioactivity in processed products.

Certified Destruction

Unfortunately, many businesses and government agencies have to dispose of counterfeit, faulty, expired or contaminated materials. All entities need to be certified that their products and materials are destroyed. The guarantee of certified destruction is to protect one’s liabilities, brand image or proprietary information. We guarantee certified destruction to give you peace of mind that your documents are disposed of properly.

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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Faster To Any Disaster

1/29/2019 (Permalink)

When fire or water damage puts the things that matter most on the line, you need the very best help on the line as well. That’s why knowing the easiest ways to contact SERVPRO® is so important. Just go to SERVPRO.com on your mobile phone or call 1-800-SERVPRO to get the team that’s faster to any size disaster. We’re a leader in giving control back to homeowners, property managers, and even entire communities after the ravaging effects of water or fire. So whether you’re responsible for 1,000 square feet or 100,000 – be ready for the worst with the very best: Your trusted, local SERVPRO ® Franchise Professional.

SERVPRO’s network of more than 1,700 Franchises is ready to help in the event a fire, water, or mold loss occurs. Call on a restoration system serving insurance companies and their insureds, as well as thousands of commercial property owners in North America. You can trust the SERVPRO® Brand, too!

Want to make sure you get your local SERVPRO?

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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12 Protection Tips for Fire Damage Restoration

1/22/2019 (Permalink)

Source: https://www.randrmagonline.com

During a fire, innumerable toxic chemicals, poisonous gases, heavy metals, and other toxins are generated by the materials, household products, and vegetation that burns. These contaminants fill the air, become part of the ash, and are extremely dangerous to your health if inhaled or come in contact with your skin. We often forget about the dangers involved in the various environments we enter, but safety should always be a top priority.

If you are entering an area affected by fire or smoke, consider the following safety tips:

  1. Avoid breathing air contaminated by smoke odor and minimize your exposure to contaminated areas.
  2. If you need to enter a smoke damaged structure, wear proper personal protective equipment, including a proper fitting respirator with a P-100 HEPA filter designed to filter vapor or gasses (not a dust mask).
  3. Persons with heart or lung disease should consult their physician before using a mask during post-fire cleanup.
  4. Avoid handling or coming in direct skin contact with items or materials affected by smoke, soot, or ash. If you need to retrieve items damaged by smoke, wear proper personal protection equipment, such as coveralls, eye protection, gloves, proper foot wear, hardhat, etc.
  5. Avoid getting ash into the air as much as possible. Do not use leaf blowers or take other actions that will put ash into the air.
  6. Avoid using shop vacuums and other common vacuum cleaners. These do not filter out small particles, but blow them out the exhaust into the air where they can be inhaled.
  7. Do not allow children or pets to enter areas that have smoke odor, ash or soot. If children or pets get soot or ash on their skin or hair, wash immediately with mild soap and warm water.
  8. If you anticipate that you will need to be inside a building or area affected by smoke, attempt to ventilate the area by opening windows or doors unless doing so will allow outdoor smoke odor or ash to get in. Minimize your exposure as much as possible.
  9. Have an environmental testing laboratory test for Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s) and particulates to determine what types and concentrations of toxins may be present. 
  10. When sorting through contents, don't take chances. People should not eat or drink anything that has signs of heat or smoke damage. When in doubt, throw it out!
  11. If you experience any adverse health symptoms from exposure to smoke or soot, seek medical attention immediately.
  12. If you need to be in an enclosed space that has smoke odor, such as an office, home, or building, try to set up air scrubbers with HEPA filters or other type of filter designed to remove ultra-fine particulate matter as quickly as possible. In addition, using a hydroxyl generator can help to break down odor causing molecules.

Contact us at 973-383-2024 if you have a service need or click here to visit our website to learn more about SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County's System Services. 

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