Recent Fire Damage Posts

Fire Safety in Socal

5/3/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire Safety in Socal Make it your aim each Spring to ensure your safety along with your loved ones’ by regularly reviewing a few key reminders on fire safety.

Once a fire starts, you may have only minutes to escape. So in addition to tackling our spring cleaning chores, another good habit to get into is reviewing a fire safety checklist for both your home and office. One of the most important yet so simple steps is the testing and maintenance of detectors. The monthly testing, periodic cleaning, annual replacing of batteries, (unless you have the ten-year lasting kind) and full replacement every ten years of each smoke detector could save your lives. Another great recommendation is to install carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers on each floor. 

Bring family members up to date on evacuation and meeting locations. Keep lighters and matches out of reach of children and remember to discuss repeatedly with children about the dangers of playing with them. Never ever leave candles unattended indoors, even religious candles as we have seen the extensive damages caused by them. Be sure to clean the lint trap on your clothes dryer after each use and teach all family members to do the same. Always remain in the kitchen when any sort of cooking or heating is being done because if you forget, fall asleep or leave the home while doing so may lead to the highest of regrets… be fire safe.

After a Fire – What To Do

4/30/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage After a Fire – What To Do Here to help with any disaster any time day or night. The BEST at Fire Damage Cleanup, Board Ups, Smoke and Soot Cleaning or Charred Odor Removal.

A home or business fire can be absolutely devastating. SERVPRO of West Covina is here any time of day or night to help. No doubt with many mixed emotions you will have to make some important decisions, some sooner than later. Here are the very first few things you will want to know and prioritize after everyone is safely evacuated and the fire is extinguished.

  1. Get to a safe zone and call 911

Safety of you and your family is of prime concern. Get everyone to a safe area away from the fire before calling 911. If you do not have a cell phone consider going to a neighbor to make the call.  Remaining outside of fire damaged areas until the authorities give clearance for re-entry is important in preventing injury.

  1. Call your insurance agent ASAP

Notify your insurance agent of the damage as soon as possible. Your insurance agent has your best interest in mind. He values your patronage and will work hard to assist during this difficult time.

  1. Ask about reputable restoration companies

SERVPRO of West Covina works with all major insurance companies and has built solid relationships within the community to be of help when disasters arise. We care about each customer and work hard to earn your trust. SERVPRO will help to secure and stabilize the premises by boarding up doors and windows to keep the elements including possible looters out. SERVPRO will next start the cleanup process by removing the smoke, soot and the charred smell. No need to tackle this loss alone, let the professionals help, that’s exactly what we are here for.

FEMA has an after fire checklist pdf that has useful information such as reminding you to start saving all receipts for all money spent related to the fire.

Now is the Time to Think of Fire Prevention

4/23/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Now is the Time to Think of Fire Prevention Cooking even in the MICROWAVE can be the source of damages. A simple potato cooked way too long caused an awful odor throughout the entire home!

Sadly, several years of drought had a part in last year’s worst fire season with over 1.8 billion acres burned in California. Families were devastated as more than one hundred lives were lost, homes and structures were charred and entire neighborhoods leveled.

Unfortunately, older homes are at high risk of catching fire quicker. If you have an older home, switching to fire-resistant materials when inspecting for damages, replacing or remodeling will help with improvements. Re-roofing? Perhaps consider bringing projects up to code as it will prove to be a worthwhile investment. Do your part to keep the community safe as wildfires are primarily started by people. Trim down dried trees, weeds and grass. Lawnmowers and other power tools used outdoors can spark a fire so during the hottest and driest months, proceed with extreme caution. Remove rocks in your path and mow in the early morning hours on non-windy days as they can spark when hit by a metal blade.

Is your building of newer construction with an automatic fire sprinkler system? This is important because it can act as your first line of defense against a potential fire. When properly maintained, they can truly make a difference by reducing heat, smoke, and flames. National Fire Association gives several fire causes such as cooking, candles, heating, smoking etc. and ways of prevention of each. They even state the odds of surviving a home fire increases eighty percent when a sprinkler system has been installed. Lives are invaluable so certainly well worth the approximately $1.35 per square foot cost of a sprinkler system home upgrade. And never underestimate the value of installing and annually testing both smoke and carbon monoxide alarms throughout each property and on every level of the home. Important to note as well is to ensure all halls and doorways are clear of tripping hazards and electrical outlets are never overloaded. We have seen fires start this way and it is always sad when with a little extra safety and precaution, a fire could have been avoided.

Cooking even in the MICROWAVE can be the source of damages. A simple potato cooked way too long caused an awful odor throughout the entire home!

WildFLOWERS to WildFIRES

4/16/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage WildFLOWERS to WildFIRES This Spring has brought tons of color and joy. As the seasons' change, so do our views and concerns. #wildflowers2019 #wildfiresprevention2019

Just a few weeks ago Southern California residents were enjoying bright Kelly green grass blanketing hills and roadsides thanks to the unusually high amount of rainfall we’ve experienced compared to the last few years. All across the southland the incredible ‘super bloom’ of wildflowers including bright orange poppies drew crowds of spectators and became a huge topic on Instagram and Facebook. Our team members passing through the Lake Elsinore fields even posted a weekday picture of the view while in route to San Diego. Many of us will agree, the wildflowers in bloom this Spring was the best we’ve probably seen yet. So colorful in fact, these colorful fields captured the attention of both tourists and residents simply due to the sheer beauty. The Washington Post’s headline included its vibrancy could even be seen from space!

Now weeks later and we’ve had merely a few days of heat and the temporarily green fields rapidly have turned yellow and brown, drying out. Rumors of windy days to come seem to be a topic of discussion for some. If you’ve lived in Southern California long, you are all too familiar with the Santa Ana warm gusty winds. In some cities and areas, those winds seem to never really die down and while most dangerous in the dry fall months, our summers can become harsh and quickly vulnerable to wildfires. Fire season is much longer due to climate change. The past several years of California’s recent wildfires have totaled BILLIONS of dollars in damages. In efforts to keep in business insurance companies have had to restructure and evaluated high-risk areas and policyholders. So what can we do as home policyholders?

Help preserve California’s beauty by preparing ahead of time. Prepare your home for a potential wildfire now. Remember safety is always first, so have evacuation plans and exits. Important also to note is strive to never miss an insurance premium payment to prevent coverage from lapsing. To be caught without insurance for your home or business property could be devastating. Next, take the time to do a thorough inspection and clear a safety zone all around your structure. Ensure all dried out and dead vegetation is removed along with any rubble or debris and flammable propane tanks or gasoline. Use extreme caution when cooking outdoors and keep firewood piles at a good distance away. If a pop-up fire nears your neighborhood, shut off the gas and extinguish pilot lights. Be fire wise and ready to evacuate prior to the danger of a fire even getting too close. We each can do our part in preventing unintentional fires from forming so that generations to come will continue to take in the picturesque scenery that surrounds us year after year. 

Fire in West Covina leaves behind a thick blanket of soot

5/16/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire in West Covina leaves behind a thick blanket of soot A lot of work went in to restoring this home after a thick blanket of soot covered absolutely everything in it. #gratefultohelp

This sweet little lady’s home caught fire in the family room. Thankfully the West Covina Fire Department quickly extinguished the flames and saved her home from burning to the ground. Since smoke and soot filled every room our SERVPRO Team we was invited to inspect the extent of the damages. Structurally the house was determined to be sound so our job was to removed the particles of soot and the burnt smell. Our work began by cleaning every item and surface top to bottom. A lot of hard work and a detailed cleaning of every piece of furniture, and precious belonging restored the home. The rich reward and satisfaction of helping one of our community members in their time of need, means the world to us! We love our job!!

How to Prevent Fire in your SOCAL Home

4/19/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage How to Prevent Fire in your SOCAL Home Damage happens so quickly! Flames from the oven began to melt this microwave, spreading the awful smell of burnt plastic throughout the home.

Each year fires occurring during the fall and winter seasons injure more than 2500 people and cause more than $390 million in damages.  Please keep your family safe by reviewing with them a few of the ways that we have seen home fires begin:

  • Do not overload electrical outlets, this is SUPER DANGEROUS!
  • Do not leave empty plastic home fragrance plug in cartridges in outlets
  • Avoid burning candles, but if used, keep under close watch
  • Keep candles and lights away from combustible materials like paper and fabric
  • Before leaving for the day, going to bed at night or leaving a room, turn off and unplug all lamps, chargers and electrical appliances
  • Do not charge phones, tablets or laptops on soft surfaces like carpet, beds or sofas, etc.
  • When operating a microwave nevert use paper goods, fabric or metal inside it
  • If cooking food on the stove top or in the oven, do not leave unattended

 Through utilizing Fire & Safety Tips aim to prevent a fire from ever starting in your home. However, accidents do at times occur so please take the time to test your smoke alarms and remember to test annually and replace them every 10 years. If smoke damage does affect your property, please call out the professionals with the expertise & experience to provide complete fire restoration services and odor removal.