Do your employees know what to do in the event of a disaster? Who do they call if they open in the morning and your business is flooded? What if the break room microwave starts a fire?
SERVPRO of Columbus is here to help. We offer a free service called an Emergency Ready Profile. This is a file that we create for your business to keep in a central location that contains emergency contacts, utility company phone numbers, locations and pictures of the utility shut-offs for your building, and any special instructions that you would like to include. We will also attach tags to the utility shut-offs so that they are immediately visible.
Time is always a factor in these types of situations. Having a plan will help to ensure that the damage to your business is minimized.
After everyone is safe and any necessary emergency responders have been called, be sure to call SERVPRO of Columbus at 706.568.1934 so that we can get you back open for business as quickly as possible!
Pick a Company with the Right Certifications
If you’re looking for a one-stop shop, be sure to go with a company that is certified in all areas. Here’s a quick guide to help you familiarize yourself with the various commercial restoration certifications and industry organizations:
- CCT - Carpet Cleaning Technician
- IICRC - Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification
- WRT - Water Damage Restoration Technician
- AMRT - Applied Microbial Remediation Technician
- OSHA - Occupational Safety and Health Administration
- ASD - Applied Structural Drying Technician
- RRT - Carpet Repair & Reinstallation Technician
- SRT - Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration Technician
- OCT - Odor Control Technician
- UFT - Upholstery & Fabric Cleaning Technician
If you just need a company to help with something specific, it’s not always necessary for your provider to be qualified in all areas, but if they are, it only increases the trust factor. It shows that they are as invested in the safety of your property as you are, and you won’t be as likely to have to hire multiple companies for the job to be completed correctly.
SERVPRO of Columbus/ S. Muscogee/Chattahoochee Counties holds these certifications. Give us a call today to work with your next household project.
Plan of Action
As many as 50% of businesses never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. SERVPRO of Columbus/S. Muscogee/Chattahoochee Counties can help you plan ahead for a disaster to minimize business interruption by developing an Emergency Ready Profile (ERP) for your business before one strikes. An ERP provides important contact and building information needed to begin a timely mitigation to help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business. Benefits of an ERP include:
- A no cost assessment of your facility which means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
- A concise profile document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency. It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
- A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster. This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
- Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin. This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
- Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information. Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.”
Board-up services are designed to safeguard your property and belongings from other forces at work, whether human or environmental, and there are many benefits to acquiring these services for your commercial property.
* They help prevent vandals or thieves from entering your building. Unfortunately, there are many people who try to profit off of a disaster, and seeing an easy opening into a building through broken windows or doors is simply an invitation for these individuals. Boarding up any entrances to the property while you’re gone can keep looters at bay until you have time to get repairs completed.
* They guard against other environmental factors. If any open areas of your building are hit by a rainstorm or intense winds, you’ll be forced to contend with more than just fire damage. Filling in these areas with protective plywood helps to eliminate any chance of flooding, leaks or other mishaps that can end up saving you money for added cleanup.
* They could help you receive more coverage from your insurance company. Insurance companies often require property owners to utilize board-up services, and following their advice can help you get greater coverage if the damage is proven to be solely from the fire. Your provider is unlikely to pay for any extended damage from outside forces, and they could consider giving you less coverage overall for not following procedure.
Call SERVPRO of Columbus for your next board up services. 706-568-1934
'Tis the Season for Holiday Cleaning
It would be an understatement to say that the holiday season is a busy time for retail. The ten busiest shopping days of the year occur between Thanksgiving and the new year, and according to the National Retail Federation (NRF), the holidays represent up to 30% of annual business for some retailers. And the action isn’t limited to retail stores; that surge of shoppers also takes its appetite into local restaurants, and its tired feet into movie theaters.
With all of those potential customers trekking about, you probably have at least two goals for your business this holiday season: for your facility to be in tip-top shape, and for your staff to bring their A-game in customer service. Forbes suggests that “if a customer has a good experience [in your store], they’re more likely to make additional impulse purchases.” In other words, you want your staff’s full attention on providing excellent customer service, so those customers leave (and return) happy, and you want your commercial space to be not just festive, but also clean; those boughs of holly won’t be too alluring if they’re decked to dirty, grimy halls.
With 2020 being such a high risk year, we want to ensure that your building has also been sanitized for COVID-19.
Give our office a call today for your next services.
Are you thinking about having your chimney cleaned prior to the upcoming holidays?
Fireplaces need to be cleaned on a regular basis for the safety of you and your home. Chimney build up can cause smoke or fire related damages. SERVPRO of Columbus can assist with the services of cleaning or rebuilding your home after these losses take place. However, in order to help prevent these, then below are some steps that you can follow.
If you have never cleaned a chimney or a fireplace before, it might be a good idea to hire a professional for an inspection.
Check out the following link on helpful tips on how to properly clean your chimney prior to this holiday season.
What Not to do when you have Soot Damage
A fire can leave behind soot, smoke damage and a host of other problems. Ceilings, walls, woodwork, carpeting and floors will often need a thorough professional cleaning. If your home or business suffers a fire, first contact SERVPRO of Columbus/S. Muscogee/Chattahoochee Counties before attempting to clean yourself. It is important NOT to do the following even though you think it might help the situation:
- Do not attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces.
- Do not attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture.
- Do not attempt to clean any electrical appliances (TVs, radios, etc.) that may have been close to fire, heat or water.
- Do not consume any foods or beverages that may have been stored close to fire, heat or water as they may be contaminated.
- If ceiling is wet, do not turn on ceiling fans. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock, and air movement may create secondary damage.
- Do not send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set in smoke odor
Call Us Today at 706-568-1934.
We specialize in fire and water damage restoration, the cornerstone of our business. We’re dedicated to responding immediately when you need help. A fast response helps lessen the damage, limits secondary damage, and reduces cost.
In the photo you will see that there is hail damage to the shingles. We are able to chalk the roof in order to show damages to the insurance company.
Why SERVPRO? Now Georgia is known for its random weather here in Muscogee County. This insured had a rook leak. It appears that not only did he have missing shingles but there was hail damage.
Most insurance companies require proof of damages to the roof prior to approval of replacement. As you can see in the before photo SERVPRO of Columbus chalked or marked the roof showing the areas of damages.
In the after photo you can see that SERVPRO of Columbus/S. Muscogee/ Chattahoochee Counties was able to assist the insured with the replacement of his roof and the installation of a new roof.
Call SERVPRO of Columbus/S. Muscogee/ Chattahoochee Counties on your next loss. We look forward to working with you or your insurance company.
Securing Your Property After a Fire
Protect Your Property From Further Damage
After a fire at your Columbus, GA property, you may feel overwhelmed with getting the insurance straightened out, repairing the property and handling everything else you have to do. Safety measures may be the last thing on your mind. However, it is important to protect your property from further damage, which can take many forms.
- Prevention of a Second Fire
If the fire department was called to the scene, the firefighters will make sure the fire is completely out. If you put the fire out yourself, it is up to you to ensure the fire is fully extinguished. Make sure to check for any lingering flames or still-smoldering embers, as these could quickly turn into a full-blown blaze. If an appliance is to blame for the fire, make sure to turn it off. In the case of an electrical fire, be sure to turn off the electricity until an electrician does an inspection and repairs any faulty wiring.
- Protection From Unwanted Visitors
Unfortunately, some people consider fire-damaged buildings to be ideal targets for burglary. Your security system may have been damaged in the fire, and vandals are likely able to cut through tarps and plywood. Luckily, a security fence can add an additional layer of protection. Not only can a fence help prevent burglaries; it also keeps out curious people who may injure themselves on your property and hold you liable.
- Protection Against Mother Nature
Make sure to board up or tarp over any holes in the structure, including windows that the fire department may have broken in order to release smoke. Doing so prevents rainwater and wildlife from further harming your building and its contents.
The first step of the fire restoration process is preventing further damage. A certified restoration team can determine if you need tarps, plywood, a security fence or some combination of these and other protective measures to keep your building safe from after-fire dangers.
After a Flood
After a Storm
No one wants to have to clean up after a flood, but here's how to start.
What should you do after a storm floods your home? After a significant weather event, you may find yourself dealing with conflicting impulses. On one hand, you'll be eager to start the cleanup process right away. On the other hand, you'll probably feel overwhelmed and unsure where to start. While it’s best to have a restoration professional working through the process on your behalf, there are certain steps you can begin while you wait for help to arrive.
The first and most important thing to know is how to re-enter a building safely. Never begin damage mitigation until a building has been cleared as safe.
- Do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet yourself or standing in water.
- Don’t walk through floodwaters. Water can be contaminated by oil, gasoline, or raw sewage or possibly even be electrically charged.
- Turn off electricity to any rooms that are affected by flooding.
- Don’t operate any electrical equipment while standing in wet or damp locations.
- Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet or enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water.
- Wear protective clothing such as boots, long pants, and gloves when entering your home or dealing with flooded areas. I realize this is going to be uncomfortable in Austin since storm season is generally in the late summer heat, but it’s not worth the risk of injury to wear shorts in a flood clean-up.
Once you get into your building, notify your insurance agent. Your policy guidelines will influence your next steps and your agent should be able to recommend a trusted water restoration team in your area. To make sure that your agent has an accurate assessment of the damage, take photos or video to record the condition of your building and possessions. Don’t move any objects or collections without documenting their condition.
At SERVPRO of Columbus, we’re ready to answer your call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but there are still some steps you can take the moment you get back home while you’re waiting for our team to arrive.
The faster you act, the more effective the restoration process will be and the better your chances are of saving water damaged possessions.
- Remove any paintings, art objects, documents and other sensitive materials to a safe, dry place.
- Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
- Raise wooden furniture out of standing waters and place on blocks if possible.
- Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
- Move large furniture away from walls for better air circulation.
- Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions for even drying.
Tips for Carpet Care
If the affected room is carpeted, there are a few things you can do to prevent further damage to your carpet that might not be obvious if you’ve never been through a flood before.
- Place aluminum foil between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
- Remove books, newspapers, magazines, or other colored items from wet carpets.
- Do not leave colored area rugs on wet carpets (or white rugs on wet colored carpets). Color transfer from one can stain the other.
Let Us Help You
Most people only ever have to recover from a flooded home once in their lifetime. When it does happen, it’s good to have a partner who has been through this before. At SERVPRO of Columbus, we have years of experience and the backing of the SERVPRO system to draw on and help make your home "Like it never even happened."
If you are dealing with flood damage, call us for help at (706) 568-1934 or request help online today.