Fire Damage Emergency Tips

What you can do until help arrives

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SERVPRO of Northern Sussex County cares about your safety.  A fire damaged structure can be a dangerous place.  Here are some important things to consider BEFORE entering this space:

  • Avoid breathing air contaminated by smoke odor and minimize your exposure to contaminated areas.  If you need to enter a smoke damaged structure, wear proper personal protective equipment. 
  • 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.
  • Avoid getting ash into the air as much as possible. Do not use shop vacuums or leaf blowers or take other actions that will put ash into the air where they can be inhaled.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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!
  • If you experience any adverse health symptoms from exposure to smoke or soot, seek medical attention immediately.

REMEMBER, SAFETY FIRST!

Have Smoke or Fire Damage? Call (973) 383-2024

What To Do After A Fire

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

What NOT To Do After A Fire

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting us.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.