Earthquakes can happen anytime, without warning. The shaking usually lasts less than 1 minute, but that minute can cause great disaster as most of us saw in Mexico 2017. Aftershocks follow but are typically less severe then the initial shock. Are you prepared for when an earthquake happens?
What to do During an Earthquake:
If you're in a building or home, Drop, Cover, & Hold On. Best place to be is under a table sturdy desk. Stay away from windows, glass, or any objects that might fall or break.
If you're outside, move away from any buildings, streetlights, or electrical wires. And don't forget to Drop, Cover, & Hold until the shaking stops.
If you're driving, stop the car as soon and as safely as possible. Operating the car may be difficult with the shaking.
What to do After an Earthquake:
Assess the damage of your location. Clean up any glass or fallen items that may have broke during the earthquake.
If you're trapped somewhere, stay calm. Use your phone to get help. Knock on a pipe or wall so authorities can locate you.
Have your Go-Bag ready and prepare yourself for aftershocks.
Are Lead Contaminates in Your Home?
Lead is scary word for allot of people, much like Mold has become. But like Mold, Lead is everywhere. So how do we keep ourselves free from harm?
What Is Lead?
According to EPA, Lead is a naturally occurring element. While it has some beneficial uses, it can be toxic to humans and animals causing of health effects.
Lead has been found in a variety of products found in and around our homes, most notably is Paint. Lead in paint has many benefits. It drys faster, shines better, blocks sound & radiation, and prevents the growth of mildew. Along with paint, ceramics, plumbing materials, solders, gasoline, batteries, ammunition, cosmetics, and toys have been found to contain lead.
When Lead Becomes Toxic:
Lead enters the body through inhalation or consumption, those are the only ways. Lead becomes toxic when disrupted.
Ex. Lead paint in a home is not harmful, unless the paint is peeling or chipping. If the paint is disrupted, lead dust can spread in the air and into your lungs. Children may be tempted to eat paint chips or rub their hands on the walls where disrupted lead paint is present. This presents a serious health hazard to the child.
Both Adults and Children absorb lead at different rates. After the limit is reached, effects may be more harmful.
Identify Effects of Lead:
Lead attacks almost every part of your body, making you feel sick. It can also do damage to your brain, lower your IQ, cause stomach problems, hearing problems, birth/pregnancy defects, and kidney failure.
Lead effects can also be unnoticeable too. A BLL (Blood Lead Level) test will give an approximation of how much lead is in your blood.
Lead in Your Home:
Yes lead is probably in your home now, whether in the form of paint or household products.
Visit the EPA & CPSC websites for more information on Lead and certain items that can affect you and your family.
SERVPRO® Technology: Hydroxyl & Ozone Generators
What are Hydroxyl & Ozone Generators: These generators work hard at removing odors. Both use Ultra Violet light to break down odor molecules. Ozone generators though have to be set up in unoccupied areas, whereas Hydroxyl generators have more leisure. Because of this standard, Ozone usually is quicker and more effective. Hydroxyl may just take longer to work around everything in the occupied space.
Why are they important: Both of these machines do their job well at removing odors in the air as well as materials where odor is present. That's what makes them so effective and useful. Do you have a musty smell from a water damage or the smell of smoke from a fire? No worries, these machines can make your house smell like home again.
3 Things Every Customer Should Know About Mitigation Companies
This is interesting data from our SIU department we thought you readers would appreciate.
Unlike most mitigation companies, we have a Special Investigation Unit (SIU). From over 1500 investigations performed for Insurance Carriers, Property Managers, Cities, etc, we have aggregated & analyzed the data from the last couple years.
Here are 3 Things All Customers Should Know:
1. OVER 90% of the time the customer was OVERCHARGED an average of 40-60%.
2. Industry standard for drying is 3-5 days (per IICRC). In most cases mitigation companies are charging for 10 days or longer. Have you ever asked them “Why”?
3. 99% of the time mitigation companies cut the drywall, have you ever asked "Why"? In many instances, IICRC guidelines recommend “in-place drying” since it is safe and reduces cost.
We fully understand that mitigation and/or restoration companies stand to make a lot less money on each project. However, the benefits to you are reduced: Cost(s), Business Interruption, and Overall Collateral Spend.
Accidents happen, but that doesn’t mean you have to be a victim! - If you feel you have been overcharged, send us an old estimate and we’ll do a ‘quick review’ for free. Maybe you are one of the lucky 10%.
We hope one day we can work together…SERVPRO® of Downey puts its partners before its pocketbook.
National Preparedness Month; Why it Matters to You.
Scar from Lion King said it best,"Be preeeepaaaared!"It's September, National Preparedness Month. A month where all are reminded that we and our families must be ready to take action when a disaster strikes and be prepared.
This is not a month for 'doomsday prepping'. For gathering beans, building bomb shelters, or installing ham radios. Rather it's a time to Learn, to Listen, and to Prepare. The recent Wildfires of California remind us of the importance of disasters and how quick things can escalate.
Consider these questions with your family:
- Do we have enough supplies to last us before first responders arrive?
- Do we have skills such as CPR & First Aid?
- Do we know our insurance policies and coverage for disasters such as a flood, earthquake, or fire?
- Do we have emergency savings?
Consider your circumstances. What disaster is most likely to happen where I live? This #NationalPreparednessMonth get involved in the conversation. Follow the hashtag above along with #NatlPrep & #PrepareNow.
Disasters don't plan ahead, but you can. Don't risk the safety and welfare of your family. SERVPRO of Downey urges you, be prepared.
To find out more about #NationalPreparednessMonth visit here.
SERVPRO® Technology: Air Movers
What are Air Movers?: Air Movers are specialized fans, industrial fans. They come in different sizes for different drying system uses. One thing they all have in common is that they move or blow air around a job sight. The result of that moving air allows the wet areas to dry.
Why Are They Important?: Air Movers are crucial to the drying process of any job. More fans doesn't necessarily mean faster drying. These fans are placed strategically for optimal drying time. After 3-5 days of constant use, the wet area will be dry.
Though they don't work alone. Dehumidifiers carry a heavy responsibility on the job sight by removing any moisture in a room. A separate post will be available regarding dehumidifiers and their functions.
Cocktail of the Week: Old Fashioned
The term Cocktail first came into existence in 1806 for a drink that included Spirits, Sugar, Water, Bitters.
Welcome to our first installment of Cocktail of the Week! A new post will occur every Friday breaking down the common and not too common cocktails for your enjoyment.
1) But...Why cocktails? You guys are a SERVPRO?
Hey! Great question, well if there's something that we all here at SERVPRO like to do it's have a nice cocktail. We're guessing you enjoy the same.
The Old Fashioned
It's the OG, the grand-dad, the mecca of all drinks. Not only is it delicious to drink, but it's easy to make and easy to mess up.
Spirit: Whiskey (Rye preferably)
Sweet: Sugar (Simple Syrup preferably)
Bitter: Angostura Bitters
In a Whiskey glass combine:
1 TSP - Simple Syrup
3 Dashes - Bitters
2 oz - Whiskey
Place Big Ice Cube in glass and stir for 25s
Pro Tip: If using Rye, garnish with Lemon Twist. If using Bourbon, use Orange Twist.
For more information on the Old Fashioned check out this link.
Is Your Pet Lost? We'll Help!
We know how it feels when our furry friends run away, that's why SERVPRO of Downey wants to help.
If your pet is lost in the local Downey area:
1) Send us a photo of your pet with all the necessary info you want to include and we'll post it on our social media.
2) Post it on your social media and tag us @SERVPROdowney and we'll repost it.
It can be stressful when the family pet is missing, but it doesn't have to be. We'll help spread the word as best as we can. #HereToHelp
SERVPRO of Downey's Quest for the Holy Bourbon
Baudoinia growing on a whiskey barrel house.
If there's anything you should know about the South, it's that they pride themselves on their hospitality. And they certainly deliver on that. Visiting Tennessee (SERVPRO homeland) and Kentucky (Bourbon homeland) was a great adventure.
We tackled the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, visiting 13 distilleries, getting a booklet stamped at each.
On our quest we learned about Baudoinia.
What is Baudoinia?
Baudoinia is a phenomenon that takes place where ever whiskey is being made. It's a black fungus that occurs on buildings, signs, trees, and other things that might be in the area. Despite its appearance it's totally safe.
Airborne Ethanol + Moisture = Baudoinia.
Fun Fact: Authorities used to track down illegal Moonshine distillers by looking for black trees, a sign of Baudoinia.
Eliminate Excessive Dust
Dust are fine particles of matter, ranging from dirt, hair, pollen, and fibers.
Dust seems to be everywhere, always. At home and work, especially in the most complicated places.
Do you feel no matter how hard you clean, dust still keeps coming back? Here might be the reasons.
1) HVAC Filters
Your HVAC system is the prime suspect to sending dust about your home or business. Do you know the last time your ducts were cleaned? Ducts collect dust, debris, & fungus. This mess can end up wearing out your HVAC filters, which could potentially cause sickness.
Buy the proper HVAC filters with a High Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) rating. The EPA recommends changing those filters every 2 months along with a regular duct cleaning service every 3-5yrs depending on use.
2) Leaking Ducts
Speaking of ducts...yours might be leaking. Leaking ducts are guaranteed to scatter dust. This can also effect your utility efficiency.
Hire a professional duct sealer to seal your ducts and prevent dust from escaping.
Dust doesn't have to take over your home or business. At SERVPRO®, we offer such services mentioned above. From water to fire even dust, we're here to help. (562) 392-3007