Recent Fire Damage Posts

Fire Preparedness

9/20/2021 (Permalink)

Water shooting out of a firefighters hose at a large, uncontrolled fire. You hope to never experience a fire in your Saratoga Springs, NY, workplace, but the knowledge and preparation can give you peace of mind.

You probably remember being in school and going through periodic drills to get ready for the possibility of a fire. The information and practice are valuable. As a business leader, holding fire drills is a good idea. You hope to never experience a fire in your Saratoga Springs, NY, workplace, but the knowledge and preparation can give you peace of mind.

Map Out The Building

Regardless of the size of your office, you and everyone at work need to be aware of the layout and design. Study the map and determine the most effective and the safest exit routes from every floor and from every portion of the facility during an emergency.

Assign Roles

A fire drill should definitely not be a free-for-all where everyone rushes out of the building without order. There are critical responsibilities that people should play in this scenario. These include the following:

  1. Team lead or floor warden, who is responsible for making sure everyone gets out safely
  2. Communication specialist, who can teach employees about the drill steps and what to do in an emergency
  3. Design specialist, who can come up with the physical or digital representation of the escape route and meeting place.

Talk About It

Before having a drill, it is essential that all employees in the organization understand what will take place and what they will do once it begins. In groups meetings or in a company gathering, discuss the critical components of your drill, including where to meet and the importance of leaving promptly but calmly.

Practice

Have a drill at least once a year. This will benefit newer employees and refresh the memories of more seasoned workers. Afterward, discuss with the group what went well and what improvements are necessary.

Practice makes perfect, but even after doing all of these things, a fire can still happen. If it does, call the experts at SERVPRO of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort at (518) 508-1111.  We will make it, "Like it never even happened."

Fire Alarms

8/31/2021 (Permalink)

A white smoke detector on the ceiling. Your property should be outfitted with multiple alarms so that you are made immediately aware if there is a fire.

When a fire starts in your commercial or residential property time is not on your side. You only have so much time to leave the premises and call for help. Every second counts. If you encounter a fire, you will be thankful to have a fire alarm that gives you a head start. Your property should be outfitted with multiple alarms so that you are made immediately aware of the situation, no matter where the fire begins.

How Many Alarms Do You Need

There is no exact number of alarms to have on hand, as everything depends on the size and layout of your property. In general, it is recommended that you have at least one alarm on each floor. You are also advised to place alarms inside or nearby the following rooms:

Residential

  1. Bedrooms
  2. Basements
  3. Garages
  4. Attics

Commercial

  1. Inside office rooms
  2. In hallways
  3. On every floor

It is not possible to have too many alarms, and it is far better to ensure that your property is highly protected in order to avoid the devastating effects of fire. The sooner you know about a fire, the more quickly you can get assistance and avoid severe fire damage. 

What Should I Do After a Fire

Though alarms are an important source of protection, they cannot always keep your property free of fire or smoke damage. If your commercial or residential property is severely damaged after a fire, then a professional fire restoration team can make repairs and even remove smoke smells from your carpet. 

Having smoke and fire alarms is necessary, but the reality is, even after doing all of these things, a fire can still happen. If it does, call the experts at SERVPRO of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort at (518) 508-1111.  We will make it, "Like it never even happened." 

How To Safely Put Out A Grease Fire

8/13/2021 (Permalink)

A fire in a pan on the stove with an arm attempting to put a lid on it. A grease fire is one of the most concerning types of fires you could encounter at home.

While it's true that a fire can start anywhere in your home, the kitchen is one of the most common places. There are a lot of hazards in this room, so you need to be cautious when you're cooking on the stove or using the oven. A grease fire is one of the most concerning types of fires you could encounter at home. Extinguishing these fires is not the same as most kinds.

What Causes Grease Fires?

If you're like most people, you probably use your fair share of cooking oil on the stove. Whether it's frying up bacon or sausage for breakfast or grilling up something else delicious on the stove or griddle, you may frequently contend with grease. The common reasons a grease fire may start include:

  • Putting too much oil in the pan
  • Leaving the room while something is frying or grilling on the stove
  • Leaving panhandles away from the stove where other people can bump into them

Smother It Quickly

If a grease fire starts in the kitchen, don't panic. Your first job is to smother the flames and remove the fire's oxygen source. You can do this by grabbing a metal lid and covering the pan or burner.

Remove The Heat

You need to next kill the heat source. Turn off the stove or unplug the electric griddle.

Try Some Baking Soda

If the fire is still going, dump a liberal amount of baking soda on the flames. This should do enough to smother the flames and control the fire. It may require some fire cleanup, but you can control the damage.

What NOT To Do

Your first reaction to putting out a fire may be to dump water on the source. With grease, this won't work; it will only spread the flames. Never put water on these types of fires.

By following these pointers, you can stay away from these disasters. 

We Are Here For You

The Disaster Remediation Teams at SERVPRO of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort have specialized training and experience in fire restoration services. Call SERVPRO of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort at (518) 580-1111 if fire damage strikes your property. We will make it "Like it never even happened."

After A Fire Fix Your Roof First

7/25/2021 (Permalink)

A roof that has been badly damaged by a fire, with hole in it. Next to the chimeny. Calling a fire damage and restoration expert that is Faster to Any Size Disaster is the first step in ensuring speedy and professional repairs!

The aftermath of even a small or partial-loss fire at your residential or commercial property can have lingering effects. While the first concern may be the fire cleanup, the potential for further issues to occur should also be a top priority if the roof was damaged. As you wait for the roof repair to take place, leaving it exposed means opening the building up to potential problems.

Roof Damage Woes

Fire cleanup doesn’t happen overnight. Calling a fire damage and restoration expert that is Faster to Any Size Disaster is the first step in ensuring speedy and professional repairs. In the interim, whether the hole was caused by the fire, or firefighters had to create an opening for ventilation, it leaves the structure vulnerable to non-fire losses or worries:

  1. Cost – The longer the roof is exposed, the higher the potential for further environmental damage that can quickly increase repair costs.
  2. Vandalism – While it depends on the extent of the roof destruction, the gap could create an access point for vandals or thieves.
  3. Pests – Animals and insects can easily find their way in through the smallest spaces.
  4. Safety – If the damage isn’t severe, you may be able to continue operating out of the business structure, but that could mean a potential safety hazard for anyone in the building.

Temporary Covering

Although not a permanent fix, using a tarp is an ideal way to minimize secondary damage or other issues. An expert will properly affix boards and tarps to keep debris and precipitation from entering through the ruined areas. Regardless of the type of roof, they will have the know-how to securely seal off entry points and create an insulation barrier to help minimize costly repairs while determining whether the roof needs to be fixed or replaced.

We Are Here For You

The Disaster Remediation Teams at SERVPRO of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort have specialized training and experience in fire restoration services. Call us at (518) 508-1111 if fire damage strikes your property. We will make it "Like it never even happened."

The Behavior of Smoke

7/3/2021 (Permalink)

A smoke detector on the ceiling with smoke and flames rising towards it. The damage to your property following a fire can often be complicated due to the unique behavior of smoke.

The damage to your property following a fire can often be complicated due to the unique behavior 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.

The professionals of SERVPRO® of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort are thoroughly trained in fire cleanup and restoration and know the different types of smoke and their behavior patterns. Knowing this information is vital to proper restoration. Before restoration begins, the professionals of SERVPRO® of Worcester will survey the loss to determine the extent of impact from fire, smoke, heat, and moisture on the building materials and its contents. The soot will then be tested to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. Pretesting determines the proper cleaning method and allows your local SERVPRO® of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort professionals to focus on saving your precious items.

Our professionals know smoke can penetrate various cavities within the structure, causing hidden damage and odor. Their knowledge of building systems helps them investigate how far smoke damage may have spread. The following points are additional facts you may not know about smoke.

  • 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.

Types of Smoke

  • Wet Smoke. (Plastic and Rubber) Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, and 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.
  • Fuel Oil Soot. (Furnace puff backs) While “puff backs” can create havoc for homeowners,
  • Other Types. (Tear gas, fingerprint powder, and fire extinguisher residue) Special loss situations require special care.

The professionals of SERVPRO® of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort are trained to handle even the toughest of losses and can, in most cases, restore the contents and structure quickly. If your home or business suffers fire or smoke damage, contact us to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

5 Common Causes of Fires (and How to Prevent Them)

6/11/2021 (Permalink)

A frying pan on fire sitting on a stovetop. It's important to remember that fires are preventable so long as you know the risks!

Hundreds of thousands of fires each year destroy homes, cause harm and disrupt people's lives. Most of them are preventable.

Cooking Fires

Cooking is the number one cause of preventable home fires! You should not cook when you're tired, if it's the middle of the night, or if you just got home from a late night. If you do cook under any of these circumstances, you need to be extra careful.

You also should not cook while you're drinking, especially if you've been drinking more than one or two glasses of wine, because your full attention won’t be where it needs to be and can lead to something dangerous. 

Oftentimes in the event of a grease fire, the first instinct is going to be to get some water to put the fire out. Do not do this - this may cause the grease to splatter and can cause the fire to spread. Instead of that, cover the fire with a pan. Starved of oxygen, it will go out on its own. You can also use baking soda on some occasions.

However, if the fire becomes too much to handle or out of control and you start to get worried for your own safety, get out as quickly as possible and call 9-1-1! 

Heating Fires

Of course, in the winter, you need to keep your home warm, especially in Saratoga Springs. But heating elements like fireplaces or space heaters can be major causes of residential and commercial fires.

You should keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from that heating source. You should also turn the heater off when you're leaving the room or if you're going to sleep. While it’s always nice to go to bed toasty, it's not safe to do so!

Electrical Fires

Electrical fires are also all too common, but they can be avoided with a bit of common sense.

You should only plug in one heat-producing appliance at a time. For major appliances like refrigerators, plug those directly into outlets - don't use extension cords or power strips. Finally, use light bulbs with the right number of watts. Those watts are listed on the sticker on the side in most cases

Smoking Fires

Smoking is less common than it used to be, but it's still a major cause of preventable fires. In fact, according to the National Fire Protection Association, over 17,000 home fires per year were caused by smoking.

Store cigarettes and lighters high up or in locked cabinets so children cannot access them.

Put out your cigarette in a deep sturdy ash tray when you're done. Make sure it's away from anything that could burn.

Candle Fires

Candles can be a major cause of home fires, causing over 7,000 fires per year, especially over the holidays. You should ensure that candles are at least one foot away from anything that could possibly burn. Finally, blow your candles out before you leave the room or go to bed. Everybody likes a bit of ambiance, but it's not safe.

It's important to remember that fires are preventable so long as you know the risks. Still, it's important to be prepared for the worst case scenario, so take a look at developing an emergency response plan. And remember if you do have a fire, call SERVPRO of Saratoga Springs, Gansevoort at 518-580-1111.