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How To Keep Your Business Prepared in Case of a Fire

7/8/2020 (Permalink)

Smoking building with a fireman. Have inspections done regularly to catch potential hazards before they become a problem.

It may not be second nature to think about a fire happening in your business, but fire preparation is necessary to keep you and your employees safe and to protect your Banning, CA building. Be sure to take the following steps before you find yourself in an emergency situation.

1. Make Sure You Have Insurance

Paying for fire damage repairs out of pocket can be pricey and can potentially have a negative impact on your business. If you don’t already have insurance that covers this type of damage, consider adding it. Ensure that it covers the following:

-Business building
-Office equipment
-Attached/detached structures

2. Maintain Your Fire Alarms

Making sure your fire alarms are working properly is an essential part of fire preparation and should never be overlooked. You should have at least one alarm on each floor, and they should be tested at least once a month.

3. Reduce Fire Hazards

There are many things that can create an increased risk of fire in your building. They can range from overloaded outlets and blocked windows and doors to faulty wiring in the electrical system. Have inspections done regularly to catch potential hazards before they become a problem.

4. Create an Escape Plan

Another important part of disaster preparation is creating an escape plan. Locate all potential exits, including windows on lower floors, and determine multiple exit paths from each area of the building. You should practice the plan at least twice a year. Posting maps in each room of the building can be helpful as well.

5. Make Copies of Important Documents

You probably have many documents, both physical and digital, that are important to your business. Making sure that you have copies of paperwork can help limit the damage if a fire does occur. Make physical copies of paper items, and back up files to external or cloud storage.

Taking the right steps toward fire preparation can help minimize its effects on your business. However, you may still end up dealing with fire or smoke damage. A cleanup and restoration company can perform mitigation and repairs so you can get back to work more quickly.

What Does Business Interruption Insurance Cover?

7/2/2020 (Permalink)

Financial concept meaning Business Interruption Insurance with sign on the piece of paper. There are many incidents that could lead to business interruption

A fire in your commercial building in Beaumont, CA, can cause extensive damage. You may not even be able to continue business as usual until the damage is repaired. When this happens, it's useful to have business interruption insurance to cover the costs to keep you on your feet.

Operating Expenses

Entrepreneurs know how to be flexible and adapt to new circumstances. No matter how seamlessly you change your business model to accommodate for the temporary loss of your facilities after a business fire, however, it is likely that you won't see as much cash flow as you're used to. Unfortunately, the costs associated with operation don't go away:

  • Payroll
  • Taxes
  • Loan payments
  • Monthly bills
  • Temporary location

Your interruption policy can help cover these costs. Talk to your provider about the specific exemptions for your particular policy.

Lost Income
Business interruption insurance may also cover the income you lose while fire cleaning experts are working on your building. The amount your policy covers depends on a combination of previous and projected earnings. Using recent profit and loss statements, your provider estimates how much you would have earned if you were able to operate your business as usual during the down time. The policy is designed to protect that income so that you don't get behind or have to shut down completely.

Government Shutdown
If a pandemic or some other widespread disaster happens, the government may decide that all non-essential businesses must close for a certain period of time. During these events, your interruption policy should cover the same things it would cover if your building was damaged or destroyed. A shutdown that is out of your control doesn't have to put your business in jeopardy if you have the right insurance coverage.
There are many incidents that could lead to business interruption. It just makes sense to have a policy in place to cover the money you lose because of it.

How To Keep Your Pets Safe During a House Fire

6/9/2020 (Permalink)

Take The Steps Below To Keep Your Pet Safe

You have probably prepared your family for a fire emergency. Your children likely know how to escape a burning home. Pets, however, usually do not understand what to do during a blaze. You should thus take the below steps to keep them safe.

1. Include Pets in Your Fire Escape Plan
When you make your escape strategy, do not forget about your furry friends. Practice bringing your dog or cat with you as you leave the burning home. As part of your pet preparation plan, you should also keep a separate supply kit that includes the animal's food and other essentials.

2. Keep Your Pets in Easily Accessible Areas
Of course, a fire emergency can also occur when your pet is home alone. If this happens, rescuers will try to save any trapped animals in your Downtown Riverside, CA, house. To make the firefighters' job easier, keep your pets near an entrance when they are home by themselves. You may want to keep their leashes in an easily accessible location, as well.

3. Ensure Firefighters Know How Many Pets You Have
Firefighters also need to know exactly how many pets may be inside. You may not have time to tell the firefighters this key information when they arrive at the house.
You should thus put up a piece of static cling in your front window that states how many pets you have. Update the list every time you get a new pet.

4. Make Sure Your Pets Have a Place To Stay
You and your family may have to temporarily move into a hotel while fire restoration professionals clean up your damaged home. Call in advance to find out which hotels in your area allow pets.
You should consider pet safety when making your fire preparation strategy. While you should not risk your life to rescue your dog or cat during a fire emergency, you can increase the pet's chances of survival by planning ahead.

3 Sewage Damage Types You Might See At Your Business

6/9/2020 (Permalink)

Bathroom floor with sewage water. Sewage backup Sewage backup in a Calimesa, CA bathroom

Three Possible Causes For A Sewer Overflow

After an overflow or storm back up at your Calimesa, CA, business, it may be best to contact a local water damage restoration service to help with a sewage cleaning. Sewage damage can occur a few ways and for the cleaning to be successful it’s important to know the source of the problem. Here are three possible causes for a sewer overflow at your business.

1. Storm Flooding Overflow

A storm can cause problems where the weather puts out more water than the sewer system can handle. In cases like this water is pushed into the only areas where it can go. This means there's a possibility it may come back through the drains and into your business. A restoration service can help with clean up and repairs, and a professional can look over the plumbing to see if there are any preventative fittings than could be installed.

2. Toilet Back Up

There are a couple of reasons toilet overflow could result in the need for a sewage cleaning. These can include a lack of water in the flush tank, an object stuck in the trap, a clog in the draining line, or a clog in one of the house lines. In any of these cases, a professional should be contacted.

3. Drain Back Up

Another possible source for sewer damage is a drain back up. These can occur either as a result of a clogged pipe or a blockage in the sewer line itself. Because it can be difficult to know which it is, it’s highly recommended to contact a professional rather than trying to clear the problem yourself.

A restoration service can help with any sewage cleaning that may bee needed after an overflow, but it’s important to know the source of the problem. This can include a storm sewer overfilling, a toilet clogging and backing up, or a similar clog occurring in a drainage area. If you experience and overflow problem it’s highly recommended to contact a professional for help.

Pipe Issues and Insurance Coverage

5/22/2020 (Permalink)

Drywall removed Water damage in a Yucaipa, CA home

You may not spend much time thinking about the plumbing and water supply in your house. However, if you experience a problem such as a flood, your attention will quickly turn to fix the issue. The damage from water spilling out of pipes onto the floor can be severe, so you'll depend on your homeowner's insurance to help cover the repair costs. In some cases, your plan will take effect. There may be other instances where you'll be responsible for the repairs.

When Your Insurance Would Deny Your Claim

Insurance coverage does not include flooding from sewer backups and overflowing waterways. It will cover pipe issues in some cases. However, you will have to pay a professional water cleanup company for costs and repairs when the following occurs:

  • A pipe breaks because of your failure to maintain and repair it.
  • A pipe breaks because you installed it incorrectly.
  • A pipe breaks because you deliberately damaged it.

Sudden, Unexpected Issues
In your home, you could experience disasters due to no fault of your own. If you need to fix a broken pipe because it suddenly burst or sprung a leak, your insurance company should approve your claim. Despite your best efforts of upkeep, accidents happen. Water damage can cause problems in your home from supply lines, sewage pipes, or appliances.

Defective Materials
If there is a flood in your house because of substandard equipment and materials, you shouldn't have to pay for cleanup or repairs. Technicians in Yucaipa, CA, could have improperly put in the pipes, or the pipes themselves could have had defects. In either case, you can depend on your insurance company to cover any losses you suffer. If you have any questions, you can speak to your agent.
Broken pipes are a common cause of a flood in your home. You should understand when you can file a claim and when you will have to handle this maintenance by yourself.

Why Materials Matter in Your Plumbing System

5/7/2020 (Permalink)

Heating System of the building. Efficient Water Treatment The plumbing system in a Banning, CA building

Why Materials Matter in Your Plumbing System

If your business is housed in an older building, you know that sometimes in the past the best materials were not always used. Sometimes it was a matter of economics, and other times it was because the flaws in a particular material were not fully appreciated. For polybutylene piping, the culprit was a mix of both. The inexpensive material was commonly used throughout commercial properties in the 1970s through the 1990s. Over time, this piping material was found to have the following defects:

  • It was susceptible to cracking and breakage
  • It became brittle when water treatments such as chlorine were used
  • It affected water quality caused by pipe degradation and breakdown

The Solution for Outdated Plumbing
If your property in Banning, CA, has polybutylene piping, it must be replaced. Building codes in the U.S. and Canada no longer recognize this material for plumbing systems. Just as importantly, if it is present it will eventually fail and cause water damage to your facility. Therefore, new plumbing will be needed to replace any sections with this outdated material. Though this retrofit of your plumbing system is likely to be expensive, the good news is that new materials will last for decades and won't degrade water quality.

The Answer for Plumbing Leaks
A professional water remediation franchise will be able to handle the full array of plumbing leaks that can plague a business. This goes for small amounts of water from a leaky pipe, to big jobs like a failure of polybutylene piping. Technicians have the advanced training and specialized equipment to quickly and safely remove water from your company. They can handle the contaminated water from sewage backups and flood waters and they are Here to Help in any situation. They know that you are eager to get back to work again, so they work with purpose to restore your building to good shape.

Why You may not See the Mold You are Smelling in Your Building

5/7/2020 (Permalink)

You may not always know if you have mice running around until you see the evidence they leave behind. But of the many things you may not know about your company building, the one you cannot afford to be oblivious to is the presence of black mold. Unlike mice, it initially leaves no visible traces, but that unmistakable mold smell is a heavy warning to a business owner in Yucaipa, CA.

Determine Where the Odor is Coming From

The smell of mold is damp, pungent, and unpleasantly musty – often described as dank. The mold smell is usually one of the first signs that spores have come out of dormancy and are alive and well somewhere in your building. They can reproduce enough to produce the odor within as few as 24 to 48 hours. You will need to call a trained mold cleanup and mitigation technician in Yucaipa, CA to find and remove the problem. The technician will do a thorough inspection, in the following areas:

  • Around and beneath water heaters, toilets, sinks
  • The plumbing system including any valves, faucets, and connections
  • Air conditioning duct systems
  • Attic spaces and crawlspaces
  • A moisture meter may be needed to check room air for high humidity

Mold and Mildew Act Differently
Both mold and mildew are types of fungi. Each produces a type of fungus smell. Mildew smell is a bit milder. Mildew is a cottony looking growth that is easier to clean because it stays on the surface of items and in many cases, is more easily cleaned from surfaces. Mold smell, however, is significantly stronger and more offensive. Mold penetrates any non-porous surfaces it colonizes on and can work so deeply into wood or sheetrock, for instance, that those materials must be removed and replaced.
Remediation can catch the problem early and prevent excessive damage. If you are noticing a distinct musty mold smell in your commercial building, follow your nose and find the problem.

Precautionary Steps

4/29/2020 (Permalink)

a graphic that says flatten the curve We have taken every possible measure to protect customers and team members alike.

It is important to us that our customers know the steps SERVPRO of North Riverside City is taking to reduce the risk of team member exposure to the virus.  These precautionary steps we have taken as a company include:

  • All tools and equipment coming into your property have been cleaned and disinfected.
  • All workers wear personal protective equipment to protect themselves while performing work.
  • We’ve all been provided with training to safely work in contaminated environments.
  • We’ve all been provided with training to identify coronavirus symptoms and carefully monitor ourselves and our co-workers.
  • We have stringent safety and health policies and procedures; and we continually strive to follow and improve our safe work practices.

Overall, we are taking the appropriate measures to ensure we don’t cross contaminate our customers, our co-workers, or our families.  We cannot make any guarantees that the virus could not enter your property, but we can tell you that we have taken every possible measure to protect customers and team members alike.

Whether it is a water loss, fire damage, or a cleaning request, please know that SERVPRO of North Riverside City is still here for the entire Riverside  community 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

FEMA Can Be A Huge Help After a Flood

4/24/2020 (Permalink)

FEMA app in play store. close-up on the laptop screen. FEMA is the primary governmental organization that coordinates a response after a disaster in the United States

FEMA Can Be A Huge Help After a Flood

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is the primary governmental organization that coordinates a response after a disaster in the United States. Among their many activities, they provide both immediate and long-term assistance to individuals who have been impacted by a flood. There are a few services they provide, including

  • Assistance finding shelter
  • Assistance with medical costs
  • Money to cover damage to homes
  • Moving expenses
  • Replacement costs for essential household items

Flooding Is the Leading Cause of Disasters
Floods are the leading cause of natural disasters in the U.S., causing around $2 billion in damages each year. In fact, according to FEMA, you’re over 6 times more likely to experience flood damage to your home than fire damage.

Insurance Policies Don’t Usually Cover Flooding
Most homeowners aren’t aware that floods aren’t covered by their policies. This is where FEMA’s Individual Disaster Assistance can help. First, they set up local disaster assistance centers to find shelter for those who are suddenly homeless. Then they’ll send out a general inspector to note damaged areas. Next, they will send in an adjuster to specifically list the details of the amount of damage and take pictures.
You’ll need to make a list of household and personal items that have been damaged or destroyed by water. Also, they’ll need to know what, if any, insurance you do have so they can coordinate your payments. For major disasters, long-term temporary housing, such as mobile homes, may be brought in, since it can take months – or years in the worst disasters – to get things back to normal.
Also, note that this assistance is not only for homeowners; renters are also qualified for many types of assistance, including payments and help to find new places to live. To qualify, all applicants must be impacted in a declared disaster zone; you can check this FEMA website to see if that zip code has been listed.
A flood in Moreno Valley, CA, can be devastating, but there is help. Once everyone is safe, contact a local restoration company that specializes in water damage to help get your life back on track.

Simple Tips to Filing a Fire Damage Claim

4/14/2020 (Permalink)

A woman is upset about her house which has burned down. Fire damage in North Riverside, CA

When you purchased your commercial property insurance, you probably never expected to be the victim of a fire in the office. This emergency could cause widespread damage in the workplace. Without the right plan, you could face some expensive cleanup. Thankfully, once you make a fire claim, you can expect to have the financial help you need to rebuild.

The Right Response

In the immediate aftermath of an office fire, you need to take appropriate steps to ensure you effectively file a fire claim. After safely getting out of the building, make sure you do the following:

  • Contact the fire department and other first responders.
  • Contact a professional fire remediation company to start the cleanup process.
  • Call your insurance agent to report the incident.

Gather Information
After making an initial call to the insurance company, you should collect vital information to share with your agent in a subsequent conversation. If it's safe to re-enter the building, and if authorities allow it, take pictures of the fire damage. If you cannot go inside, coordinate with cleanup technicians to get these photos. You should also document equipment, materials and items that were damaged or lost in the fire. Make sure you are accurate and honest as you furnish this information to the insurance company.

Coordinate With the Cleanup Company
You will work closely with the fire restoration team and your insurance company during the cleanup and rebuilding phase. Once your insurance company approves your claim, it should pay the restoration crew for its services. Communicate often with your agent. Be prepared to answer questions and provide much information as requested. In the meantime, if you have to pay for any repairs before getting your settlement money, keep the receipts and records so you can give these to the insurance company.
Despite your best preparation, you may not be able to prevent a fire in your North Riverside, CA, building. If you have to file a fire claim, follow these guidelines.