Recent Fire Damage Posts

Summer Safety!

7/22/2019 (Permalink)

Each summer, family and friends across the country enjoy the summer months with barbecues, camping trips, or by cooling off in a pool or lake. In order to enjoy these occasions, it is important to keep safety top of mind to help ensure you have fun in the sun.

According to the United States Fire Administration, nearly 8,600 Americans are injured by fireworks and almost 5,000 are injured by grill fires, annually. A grill should always be supervised when in use. Keep children and pets a safe distance from the grilling area to prevent accidental burns or tipping of the grill.

If you enjoy lounging by the pool or going for a boat ride to cool off from the summer sun, make sure you exercise caution, especially when children are present. Only swim in approved areas and always supervise children when near the water.

Summer is a time to make memories and enjoy the great outdoors. The following tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), will help keep you safe all summer long.

  • When using a charcoal grill, only use starter fluids designed for grills; do not add fluid after coals have been lit.
  • When using a gas grill, ensure the hose connection is tight; check hoses for leaks.
  • Always wear a U.S. Coast Guard approved PFD (personal flotation device) when boating, jet-skiing, tubing or water-skiing. Air-filled swimming aids, like water wings or inner tubes, are not substitutes for approved PFDs. An adult should always supervise children using these devices.
  • When camping, always use a flame-retardant tent and set up camp far away from the campfire. Only use flashlights or battery-powered lanterns inside the tent, not liquid-filled heaters or lanterns.
  • Always build a campfire down wind from the tent area. Clear vegetation and dig a pit before building your campfire. Always extinguish the fire before going to sleep or leaving the campsite. To extinguish, cover the dirt or pour water over the fire.

SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West wishes you a safe and happy summer!

Grilling Safety 2019!

7/15/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know that 10,200 home fires are started by grills each year, on average? Did you know that July is the peak month for grill fires followed by June, May and August? 

We all love barbecuing. It's a summertime staple! Follow the following tips to prevent you and your family from being one of the statistics above:

<<SAFETY TIPS>>

  • Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors. 
  • The grill should be places well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area. 
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and trays below the grill.
  • NEVER leave your grill unattended. 
  • Always make sure your gas grill lid is open before lighting it. 

<<CHARCOAL GRILLS>>

  • There are several ways to get the charcoal ready to use. Charcoal chimney starters allow you to start the charcoal using newspaper as fuel.
  • If you use a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire. 
  • Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources. 
  • There are also electric charcoal starters, which do not use fire. Be sure to an extension cord for outdoor use. 
  • When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container. 

<<PROPANE GRILLS>>

Check the gas tank hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year. Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose. A propane leak will release bubbles. If your grill has a gas leak, by smell or the soapy bubble test, and there is no flame, turn off both the gas tank and the grill serviced by a professional before using it again. If the leak does not stop, call the fire department. If you smell gas while cooking, immediately get away from the grill and call the fire department. Do not move the grill. If the flame goes out, turn the grill and gas off and wait at least 5 minutes before re-lighting it. 

Source: nfpa.org/education

Summertime Safety Tips

6/12/2019 (Permalink)

SUMMER IS HERE! Keep these tips in mind as you and your family enjoy summer vacations, camping, family reunions, picnics and the Fourth of July.

  1. Build campfires at least 25 feet away from tents, shrubs and anything that can burn.
  2. If you want to see fireworks, go to a public show put on by experts. Sparklers can reach 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit and cause third-degree burns.
  3. Use chimineas, outdoor fireplaces, and fire pits outdoors only and at least 10 feet away from your home or anything that can burn.
  4. Use propane, charcoal and wood pellet barbecue grills outdoors only. Indoor use can cause a fire or carbon monoxide poisoning. Place your grill well away from siding and deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches. Do not store or use a grill on a porch or balcony.

When fire damage takes control of your life, SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West will help you take it back. Call us at 253-896-3000 for your fire damage needs.

Fire and Smoke Damage DOs and DON’Ts

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

A home or business fire is stressful and inconvenient for all who are involved. As a homeowner or business owner, knowing what to do in the case of a fire may be foreign to you. These emergency tips will assist you in taking proper actions until SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West arrives. Please follow these DOs and DON'Ts to help reduce damage and increase the chance of a successful restoration.

DO

  • Limit movement in the home or business to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpet
  • Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork
  • Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery, and carpet traffic areas
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open to help prevent odor
  • Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim, and appliances, then protect these surfaces with a light coating of lubricant
  • If heat is off during winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and  turbs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures
  • Wash both sides of leaves on house plants
  • Chance HVAC filter, but leave system off until a trained professional can check the system
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to sstop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system

DON'T

  • Attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting SERVPRO of Tacoma
  • Attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting SERVPRO of Tacoma
  • Attempt to clean any electrical appliances (TV sets, radios, etc.) that may have been close to fire, heat or water without first consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Consume any food or beverage that may have been stored close to fire, heat or water (they may be contaminated)
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock and air movement may create secondary damage.
  • Send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set in smoke odor.

When fire damage takes control of your life, SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West will help you take it back. Call us at 253-896-3000 for your fire damage needs.

Smoke Alarm Safety

4/30/2019 (Permalink)

The National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) reports nearly two-thirds of these fire-related deaths occurred in homes with no working smoke alarm or no smoke alarms present at all. Smoke alarms play a vital role in saving lives, and when they are properly installed, can reduce the risk of fire injury in half.

The NFPA recommends smoke alarms be installed in every bedroom, outside all sleeping quarters and on every level of the house.

Business owners should consult the local Fire Marshall to ensure specific building fire codes and smoke detector requirements are met.

Once smoke alarms are in place, it is important to maintain and regularly test the alarms to ensure they are in the proper working order. Review the tips provided here regarding smoke detector installation and maintenance.

Smoke alarms work best when paired with a fire escape plan. A preparedness plan allows your family, employees, or clients to escape quickly and safely in an emergency situation. For tips or information on emergency preparedness, contact SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West at 253-896-3000.

Smoke Alarm Tips:

  • Install smoke alarms inside every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement.
  • Smoke alarms should be installed away from the kitchen to prevent false alarms. Generally, they should be at least 10 feet from a cooking appliance.
  • Test smoke detectors at least once a month using the test button
  • Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps,” warning the battery is low, replace the battery right away
  • Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old

Smoke and Soot Cleanup

6/14/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your University Place / Lakewood Home.

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 253-896-3000

Smoke Alarm Safety

6/7/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke Alarm

We all know that annoying beep that the smoke alarm makes when its battery is about to die. This helpful sign may be annoying but what if you needed your alarm and it was dead. The National Fire Protection Association says that dead batteries caused 24% of smoke alarm failures. Keeping a routine of inspection of such devices is so important.

Here’s what you should know about smoke alarms:

  • Larger homes may need extra smoke alarms
  • Test your smoke alarms at least once per month
  • Smoke alarms should be interconnected so when one sounds they all sound
  • Replace all smoke alarms in your home every 10 years

Smoke alarms save lives, the only way they can do their job is if you do yours by making sure they are working properly. In unfortunate event you do have a fire in your home SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West is always available to help with fire and smoke damage call us at 253-896-3000.

Protect your kids from fires and burns

6/6/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Safety Tips

From a hot cup of coffee to boiling water on the stove, burns are a huge hazard in every home.  Burns are the most (especially hot water and liquids) are the most common accidents related to kids.  Here are a few ways to help avoid burn related accidents.

  • Always use the back burner on your stove when possible.
  • Keep an emergency aid kit close at hand in your home.
  • Install a fire extinguisher in your kitchen.
  • Keep matches, lighters, candles and chemicals put away out of reach.
  • Put child safety plugs in your outlets.

For more information on childproofing your home check out these sites:

www.kidshealth.org (Burn Safety)

www.nsc.org (Emergency Fire Preparedness)

Your child's safety is important to us here at SERVPRO.  In the event of a fire or smoke damage keep in mind SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West is here to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. (253) 896-3000

BBQ Safety

6/4/2018 (Permalink)

BBQ fire was caused by a propane leak.

That time is here school is out, the sun is bright, and we are ready to be outside! After a long winter cooped up in your house, your ready to bust out the BBQ and have your friends and family over! Some don’t realize when hosting these events your increasing your chances of a housefire.

Here is a list of helpful hints to keep you and your guests safe this summer:

  • Make sure your grill is at least 3 feet away from other objects including your house, trees, fences, and outdoor furniture.
  • Remember starter fluid should only be used in charcoal grills not gas grills.
  • If you think your gas grill could have a leak, turn it off and fix it before use again.
  • Keep children and pets at least 3 feet away from the grill.

For more information check out these websites:

http://www.mbhinsurance.com/grilling-safety-reminders-for-your-summer-bbq/

https://www.nfpa.org/Public-Education/By-topic/Seasonal-fires/Outdoor-entertaining

If your summer event doesn’t turn out as planned, SERVPRO of Tacoma is here to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We pride ourselves in being on site within 4 hours of our first notice of the loss. For your fire restoration needs, contact us at 253-896-3000.

Fire Damage in Your Home

5/12/2017 (Permalink)

Fire damage in your home can be a stressful event. Damage to your personal belongings and home are just some of the concerns you may experience. Timely response and thorough mitigation can alleviate these concerns. The first 24 hours can make the difference between restoring versus replacing your property and personal belongings. Our 1-4-8 Service Response Guidelines can help prevent fire damage from creating long-term problems. 


We provide timely response with mitigation services ranging from fire, smoke and soot removal to contents claim inventory and document restoration. These services help ensure your property, belongings and memories are restored to preloss condition when possible.


What you can do until help arrives:


Do



  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from spreading and additional damage from occurring

  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs and high traffic areas and upholstery

  • Coat chrome faucets, trim and appliances with petroleum jelly or oil

  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpet


Don't



  • Wash any walls or painted surfaces

  • Shampoo carpets or upholstery

  • Clean any electrical equipment

  • Send clothing to dry cleaner since improper cleaning may set smoke odor


SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West understands your home is more than four walls. Your home includes your memories and personal belongings. We are trained in caring for both you and your home. By responding quickly with a full line of fire cleanup and restoration services, SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West can help you restore your home and personal belongings.


Before you risk doing further damage by attempting to clean up the damage yourself, call SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West, the fire damage cleanup and restoration professionals at 253-896-3000.

Safety Tips for Using a Turkey Fryer

11/14/2016 (Permalink)

Follow these tips when using a turkey fryer, if you so choose!

As delicious as a fried turkey may be, the method of cooking can be very dangerous. Using a turkey fryer should be avoided at all costs. There are many concerns surrounding a turkey fryer including burns and fire hazard. If you choose to use a turkey fryer during the holidays, Allstate Insurance has compiled a list of cooking tips when using a fryer. 

  • Keep fryer in full view while burner is on.
  • Place fryer in an open area away from all walls, fences, or other structures.
  • Never use in, on, or under a garage, breezeway, carport, porch, or any structure that can catch fire.
  • Raise and lower food slowly to reduce splatter and avoid burns.
  • Cover bare skin when adding or removing food.
  • Check the oil temperature frequently.
  • If oil begins to smoke, immediately turn gas supply off.
  • If a fire occurs, immediately call 911. Do not attempt to extinguish fire with water.

In the event of a fire, call SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West for your fire restoration needs. We are available 24/7, 7 days a week. 253-896-3000.

https://www.allstate.com/resources/allstate/attachments/tools-and-resources/pz-holiday-cooking-safety-tips-nov-2013.pdf

Holiday Fire Safety

11/14/2016 (Permalink)

This holiday season, SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West is making safety our first priority. Make it yours too!

During the holiday season, it's easy to get distracted while in the kitchen. It's important to keep safety your first priority. Allstate Insurance and Liberty Mutual Insurance has compiled a list of safety tips to follow during this holiday season.

  • Stay in the kitchen while food is cooking. Most fires in the kitchen occur because food is left unattended.
  • Keep the cooking range free of clutter such as oven mitts, food packaging, and decorations. Even though you have myriad dishes to prepare, don't overload a cook top with too many pots and pans. Trying to cook all your dishes at once could cause grease to accidentally spill onto a range top and cause a fire.
  • Grease can ignite quickly, so be sure to wipe the stove top and oven before cooking to remove previous grease spills or splatters.
  • Never throw water on a grease fire, it's best to smother the fire by pl;acing a lid on the pan.
  • Always keep a potholder, oven mitt and lid handy while cooking. If a small fire starts in a pan on the stove, put on a flame-resistant oven mitt and smother the flames by carefully sliding the lid over the pan. Turn off the burner. Don't remove the lid until the food has cooled.
  • When removing lids on hot pans, tilt them away from you to protect your face and hands from steam. If there is an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed to prevent flames from burning you or your clothing.
  • Never wear loose fitting clothing when cooking. Long, open sleeves could ignite and catch fire from a gas flame or a hot burner. Wear short, close fitting or tightly rolled sleeves when cooking. If you have long hair, be sure to tie it back.
  • Keep smoke alarms connected while cooking. Smoke alarms can save lives. Make sure smoke alarms are installed and working.
  • Unplug small appliances that aren't in use. Not only will you save the energy, but you will also avoid the potential dangers if they were to be turned on accidentally.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen in case of emergency and know how to use it. Make sure the fire extinguisher is UL listed and rated for grease and electrical fires.
  • Never put a glass casserole dish or lid on the stove burner; if it gets too hot it could crack or shatter.
  • Establish a "kid free" zone of 3 feet around the stove and use the back burner first.
  • Never hold a child on your hip while cooking as it greatly increases the likelihood for burns.
  • Turkey fryers should be avoided, as they can be extremely dangerous.

If you have fire damage, call SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West for your fire restoration needs. 253-896-3000

https://www.allstate.com/resources/allstate/attachments/tools-and-resources/pz-holiday-cooking-safety-tips-nov-2013.pdf

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/342203271656096941/

 

Fire and Smoke Damage DOs and DON'Ts

11/4/2016 (Permalink)

Fire damage to your property? Follow these DOs and DON'Ts until help arrives!

A home or business fire is stressful and inconvenient for all who are involved. As a homeowner or business owner, knowing what to do in the case of a fire may be foreign to you. These emergency tips will assist you in taking proper actions until SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West arrives. Please follow these DOs and DON'Ts to help reduce damage and increase the chance of a successful restoration.

DO

  • Limit movement in the home or business to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpet
  • Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork
  • Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery, and carpet traffic areas
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely and prop doors open to help prevent odor
  • Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim, and appliances, then protect these surfaces with a light coating of lubricant
  • If heat is off during winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and  turbs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures
  • Wash both sides of leaves on house plants
  • Chance HVAC filter, but leave system off until a trained professional can check the system
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to sstop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system

DON'T

  • Attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West
  • Attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstered furniture without first consulting SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West
  • Attempt to clean any electrical appliances (TV sets, radios, etc.) that may have been close to fire, heat or water without first consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Consume any food or beverage that may have been stored close to fire, heat or water (they may be contaminated)
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock and air movement may create secondary damage.
  • Send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set in smoke odor.

When fire damage takes control of your life, SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West will help you take it back. Call us at 253-896-3000 for your fire damage needs.

Prevent Your Home From Fires This Halloween

10/10/2016 (Permalink)

Follow these steps to prevent a fire from occurring in your home this Halloween!

Halloween is a time for tricks and treats, but it's also a time to be cautious about fires. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), decorations are the first thing to ignite in more than 1,000 reported home fires each year. Here are a few things you can do this Halloween to prevent fires in your home from NFPA and the American Red Cross.

  • Dried flowers, cornstalks, and crepe paper are highly flammable. Keep these and other decorations well away from all open flames and heat sources, including light bulbs and heaters. 
  • It is safest to use a flashlight or battery-operated candle in a jack-o-lantern, use long, fireplace-style matches or a utility lighter. Be sure to place lit pumpkins well away from anything that can burn and far enough out of the way of trick-or-treaters, doorsteps, walkways, and yards. 
  • Remember to keep exits clear of decorations so nothing blocks escape routes.
  • Use flashlights as alternatives to candles or torch lights when decorating walkways and yards. They are much safer for trick-or-treaters, whose costumes may brush against the lighting.
  • When using a real candle to light your jack-o-lantern, make sure the candle gets blown out when you can't monitor it, especially when you leave your home.
  • Always remember to turn off any running electric appliances before you leave home, blow out candles, and unplug fire hazards, such as lights, that might get too hot.

https://www.army.mil/e2/c/downloads/328439.pdf

http://redcrosschat.org/2015/11/04/hidden-dangers-halloween-decorations/

In the event of a fire, contact SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West for your fire damage needs. We can be reached 24/7 at 253-896-3000.

University Place/Lakewood Smoke and Soot Cleanup

8/30/2016 (Permalink)

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – 253-896-3000