Recent Fire Damage Posts

TOP FIREWORK SAFETY TIPS

6/7/2019 (Permalink)

Summer is often associated with grilling, fireworks, and festive parades, but careless activities can lead to irreversible fire and smoke damage in your Long Beach neighborhood.

For instance, there are plenty of visits to the emergency room in the midst of celebrating our independence. In 2017, at least eight people died and about 12,900 were injured badly enough to require medical treatment after fireworks-related incidents, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. While most of these incidents resulted from untrained individuals using homemade, illegal, or professional-grade fireworks, thousands were from “safe” devices such as small firecrackers and sparklers.

Remember, legal fireworks can be just as dangerous as illegal ones. We encourage you to remain mindful of the following tips from the National Safety Council to stay safe this summer:

  • Never use fireworks while impaired by drugs or alcohol
  • Never allow young children to handle fireworks
  • Older children should use them only under close adult supervision
  • Never light them indoors
  • Only use them away from people, houses and flammable material
  • Only light one device at a time and maintain a safe distance after lighting
  • Never ignite devices in a container
  • Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks
  • Soak unused fireworks in water for a few hours before discarding

If you find yourself requiring emergency fire damage or smoke clean-up, SERVPRO of Northeast Long Beach / Lakewood is here to repair and restore your home or business. We’re available 24/7, even holidays, to reduce your stress and get you back on your feet.

TOP 4 TIPS FOR SAFE BARBECUING THIS SUMMER

5/7/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage TOP 4 TIPS FOR SAFE BARBECUING THIS SUMMER Beware of fire hazards when barbecuing this summer.

If you plan to enjoy barbecuing this summer, it’s important to be mindful of potential fire hazards which can lead to irreversible fire damage and lingering smoke damage in your Long Beach residence. Follow these simple fire safety guidelines to prevent a fire from occurring near your home this summer. 

  1. Keep the grill outside, and avoid using your grill in garages, covered decks, screened in patios, or any area where there is a roof located above. They should also be kept at a safe distance from the house to prevent flare ups from reaching the exterior of your home.
  2. Keep your eye on the barbecue. If you abandon your grill, it can be knocked over or flare up, causing the surrounding area to catch fire. Make sure the grill is always supervised whenever it’s in use to avoid unnecessary fire damage.
  3. Regularly clean it. If you are pulling your grill out of storage, it’s important to clean off any sticky grease or hardened fat since they can cause an unexpected flare up. These pieces can easily be scraped off using a proper grill cleaner.
  4. Inspect it closely. If you are using a propane or gas grill, it’s important to inspect it before using it. Look for any signs of holes and potential problems in the hose. This could signal that there’s a leak. A gas leak next to a flame can cause serious problems and start a fire. 

Make sure to follow these guidelines every time you fire up your grill to ensure the safety of your home and loved ones. If you experience fire damage, smoke damage, or require board up and tarping services this summer, SERVPRO of Northeast Long Beach / Lakewood is available to take your call anytime, day or night at 562-420-0030.

FIRE EXTINGUISHERS - NEED TO KNOW FACTS

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

Whether you are a home owner or renter, knowing the basic tenants of fire safety can mean the difference between minor damage or total loss. Having a fire extinguisher on the premises and knowing how to access it can keep you and your loved ones safe. Here we will review the different types of fire extinguishers and how to use one in the event of an emergency.

Fire Extinguisher Classifications

Household fire extinguishers are labeled with a specific class to fight a specific type of fire. Since using the wrong extinguisher could make the situation worse, consider one that is rated for multiple classes.

Class A: For trash, wood, and/or paper fires.
Class B: For liquids and/or grease fires.
Class C: For electrical fires.
Class D: For flammable metals (usually only needed in labs or industrial plants).
Class K: Specifically for kitchen fires when grease and oil are involved.

Fire Extinguisher Effectiveness and Size

When choosing an extinguisher, determine its effectiveness by considering the numbers on the label. Every number before the A means it is as effective as 1.25 gallons of water. For example, 2A means the fire extinguisher is as effective as 2.5 gallons of water. The numbers before B and C are a measure of the amount of square feet the fire extinguisher can put out. For example, a 20: BC fire extinguisher can extinguish a fire over 20 square feet.

Keep in mind that the extinguisher size also varies based on the weight. Typically, there are 4, 5, 10, and 20-pound extinguishers. Bigger isn’t always better; it depends how much you can physically hold and the size of your residence.

How to Use a Fire Extinguisher

A good way to remember what to do in a moment of panic is the acronym P.A.S.S.

Step 1: Pull the pin.
Step 2: Aim the extinguisher at the fire low with the nozzle at the base of the fire.
Step 3: Squeeze the handle to begin extinguishing the fire.
Step 4: Sweep the extinguisher side to side at the fire’s base until it’s out.

With these helpful tips, we hope that you remain prepared in the event of a fire. Don’t hesitate to call 9-11 if the fire spreads or if you are in need of assistance. We are here to help during the aftermath to repair damage caused by smoke, soot, and fire; call us 24/7 for all your restoration needs.

STORING PROPANE TANKS SAFELY

3/4/2019 (Permalink)

As a clean and natural energy source, propane is an easy to use and affordable product to warm homes, provide heating, and allow barbeque and cooking. It comes in both gas and liquid forms and is also highly flammable. When misused, propane poses a strong fire hazard. Following these 3 tips to store propane tanks properly will keep your home safe and reduce the chance of fire damage.

First, always store propane tanks upright and outdoors on a hard surface. Should it catch on fire, the potential for loss is much less severe. The hard surface can help prevent the container from accidentally tipping over and causing unneeded damage or harm to the tank itself. Additionally, never leave a cylinder tank inside a car or vehicle.

If you smell gas or an odor like rotten eggs, shut off the propane tank and leave immediately if there are no visible sparks or flames. Avoid using a cell phone, lights, or appliances. Notify the fire department of a potential gas leak and do not return to the building until it has been declared safe for re-entry.

Always turn off the gas line or valve to an unused tank. Leaving it open could cause a leak, leading to dangerous situations where fire or explosion may occur. Remember to treat an empty tank as if it were full, just in case there was an error.

We hope these tips keep you safe when handling propane tanks. In the case of property damage, call SERVPRO of Northeast Long Beach / Lakewood 24/7 for restoration services.

SPACE HEATER DANGERS

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

During the cold months, space heaters are a great way to warm a room in the absence of central heating. Portable heaters, however, can pose certain threats to your home. If left unattended, a space heater can easily cause a house fire or electrical overload. Remain safe and warm by remembering the following safety tips.

  • Leave three feet of space around your heater to avoid igniting flammable material. Keep pets and children from disturbing the heater to avoid burns and injuries. Make sure to also remove any objects blocking air flow or covering cables or components.
  • Avoid leaving a heater running throughout the day, especially unmonitored. It may overload a circuit, causing power failure or a fire. Any unusual sounds or malfunctions should be fixed right away.
  • Don't use extension cords or power strips with a space heater. Plugging them directly into an outlet will help avoid a power overload.
  • Avoid using a space heater in a humid environment such as a bathroom. Water in the air may cause complications with the machine, causing it to malfunction.

As you shop for a portable heater, look for a safety certification label from an independent testing organization and the following safety features to keep your home safe from fire damage.

  • Shut-off features: A smart sensor will automatically shut off the machine when it overheats, and a tip-over switch does the same if the heater is knocked over.
  • Ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) plug: This plug helps prevent electric shock. If your heater does not come equipped with one, avoid using it around moist areas.
  • Sturdy cord: Many heaters come with a cord around 6 feet long. Make sure it has a sturdy design and reaches the desired areas. Remember, extension cords or power strips can cause electrical issues.

Educating yourself about the safety hazards that come with the improper use of portable heaters will help you achieve better peace of mind as you keep your home warm and comfortable during this winter season.

CAN YOU GUESS THE MOST COMMON CAUSES OF HOUSE FIRES?

9/12/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage CAN YOU GUESS THE MOST COMMON CAUSES OF HOUSE FIRES? Fire damage to a home's contents in Santa Barbara

There are many situations that may cause a fire, but can you guess the most common causes of house fires? It may happen in ways you least expect. Take precautionary measures now to protect your home from the following fire instigators. If an accident occurs, SERVPRO of NE Long Beach / Lakewood has you covered.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking equipment is the number one cause for house fires. Pots and pans can quickly overheat when left unattended or mishandled. Be sure to turn handles towards the middle of the stove to avoid children from accidentally grabbing it from the burner. When leaving the house, remember to turn off stove-top burners and ovens.

Moreover, smoking in bedrooms should be avoided at all costs. A cigarette butt can stay lit for hours and cause a flame after coming into contact with clothes or furniture. Open flames such as candles also pose a danger for many residents. While they may have an attractive look and smell, candles should always be blown out before you leave a room.

Furthermore, older lampshades and light fittings may build up heat, and weak bases could pose a tipping hazard. Electrical equipment such as these should be checked for faulty cords, and the power point must not be overloaded with double adapter plugs. Also be mindful of flammable liquids such as petrol, kerosene, or methylated spirits around the house. These should be kept away from heat sources and stored properly according to their label.

If you experience a fire, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Examine you and your family for injuries and seek medical help
  • If you can’t find a place to stay, your local Red Cross can help provide food and provisions
  • Notify your insurance company about the fire
  • Do not re-enter your home until instructed to do so. Talk to firefighters about what can be salvaged instead
  • Once you are cleared to enter the building, check for important documents and keepsakes
  • Make a list of your possessions and note damaged goods
  • Keep track of receipts for expenses as a result of the fire

Nobody wants to come home to a irreparable damage. By knowing these common causes of house fires, you and your neighborhood can live a little bit safer. When accidents happen, SERVPRO of NE Long Beach / Lakewood is here to clean fire damage and restore your home quickly and professionally.

KID FIRE SAFETY-BE PREPARED!

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage KID FIRE SAFETY-BE PREPARED! Fire damage to a Signal Hill home

You may know what to do during a fire, but do your children? SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood has faced countless losses in homes and businesses due to fire damage so we want families to be prepared. With school coming back in session soon, it's important to make sure that your kids are educated on fire safety. You never want to leave your kids home alone without the proper fire safety education and since you can't predict a fire emergency, fire safety education is key. Here are some important items to remember: 

Make sure that you educate your children on what a smoke alarm looks and sounds like. Make sure they can recognize when a fire alarm has gone off and what to do when an alarm has sound. Know two or more routes to exit your home/school during a fire as well as a meeting point away from the location a safe distance from the fire. The American Red Cross suggests "Practice your fire escape plan at least twice a year and at different times of the day. Practice waking up to smoke alarms, low crawling, and meeting outside." It is crucial your children also know how to dial 9-1-1. 

When making sure your home is up to fire safety standards, make sure to have escape ladders on the upper levels so that you can escape from windows to safety. The American Red Cross also suggests "use quick-release devices on barred windows and doors. Security bars without release devices can trap you in a deadly fire. If you have security bars on your windows, be sure one window in each sleeping room has a release device." It is important to make your children aware of which windows have quick releases on them and how to use them properly. Also have fire extinguishers readily available, and up-to-date and, at minimum, in the kitchen, garage and on the upper levels. 

It's never too soon to start teaching your kids how to be prepared during an emergency, including fires, as they often occur in the home. SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood is open 24/7 in case an emergency strikes. We are dedicated to helping restore your residence to pre-disaster conditions, making it “Like it never even happened”. 

FIRE SEASON IS CAUSING WIDE SPREAD DAMAGE

7/13/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage FIRE SEASON IS CAUSING WIDE SPREAD DAMAGE Fire damage to a home in Long Beach

There have been recent Fires throughout the State, causing fire damage and smoke damage to residential and commercial properties. Here at SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood, we’ve already responded to a number of fire losses in the last month. The overall incidents across the region cause worry among officials and scientists that fire season may come earlier to California this year, amid drought conditions, raising worries of a destructive season ahead. Last year was the deadliest and costliest fire season in the state’s history. No one wants to see another year of deadly fires.

On a personal level, it’s important to be prepared. Stay tuned in to your favorite tv or radio station to keep informed about current fire locations and their status. An informative website is www.fire.ca.gov for up-to-the-minute reports. They not only tell you if there is a fire close to you, but also the level of containment of the fire and how many acres have been impacted. Be sure to have an emergency bag packed and kept up to date in case an evacuation is announced or your property is affected.

Should your property suffer from fire or smoke damage, SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood is available, 24/7 to help. We’ll work closely with your insurance company, providing the needed documentation and photos to assist in getting the needed approvals to move forward in cleanup, restoration and, reconstruction of your home or business. We can pack up your belongings and keep them safely stored in our warehouse until they can be returned to your property. We have worked with numerous customers affected by loss caused from fire damage, assisting them through this overwhelming process. Look to the certified, trained professionals at SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood to help you through this difficult time. We’ll make it “Like it never even happened”.

EMERGENCY EVACUATION KIT: BE PREPARED FOR FIRE SEASON

7/6/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage EMERGENCY EVACUATION KIT: BE PREPARED FOR FIRE SEASON Fire damage to a building in Anaheim.

What if I Need to Evacuate My home?

Fire season is in full effect and multiple fires have started across the state of California causing fire damage to residences and businesses. Here at SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood we work on fire restorations and repair when a disaster strikes. We also know it's extremely important to get together an Emergency Evacuation Kit. We've compiled some helpful tips for putting together an evacuation kit. It is important to update your emergency kits every year to adjust to new needs and replace anything that has expired. Ready.gov suggests you have kits ready in your home, car, and at work because you never know when a fire will cause an evacuation.

What to Pack inside the Kit:

  • Scan and save all important documents on a flash drive

These include:

  • Driver’s license
  • The deed to your house
  • Your will and/or trust
  • Proof of insurance
  • Medical records
  • Passport
  • Social security cards
  • Birth certificates
  • Pet paperwork
  • Daily Essentials
    • Flashlights
    • Batteries
    • Clothes
    • Pet supplies
    • Diapers (if needed)
    • Nonperishable foods
    • Hand crank/battery powered radio
    • Medications (as applicable)
  • First Aid Kit
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Sleeping Bag/Blankets

To look up more on how to pack the perfect evacuation kit check out Ready.gov for additional tips. If your home or business experiences fire damage, call SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood. We’re here 24/7 to help make it “Like it never even happened”.

FIRE SAFETY TIPS TO AVOID FIRE DAMAGE

7/6/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage FIRE SAFETY TIPS TO AVOID FIRE DAMAGE Home Fire in Tustin

How to Avoid Fire Damage and Keep Your Home Safe

Fires can happen anytime/anywhere and the impact of fire damage is overwhelming. That’s why SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood is open 24 hours a day, every day, just in case an emergency, such as a fire, strikes your home. We are always looking out for the safety of our customers and ways to assist in keeping emergencies, such as fire damage, at a minimum. With fire season in California upon us it is important to always be updated on fire safety measures in your home. Here are some recommended steps:

Smoke Detectors

-Install at least one smoke detector on every level of the home, near the bedrooms, and one in the garage.

-Test all the batteries monthly

-Clean your smoke detectors from dust and dirt to keep them working properly

Fire Escape Plan

-Establish a planned escape route for every room in the house

-Determine an outside meeting place for all family members

-Review your plans and practice a fire drill with household members twice a year

Electricity

-Use fire-safe electric outlets

-replace fraying cords

-Do not overuse one plug

Outdoor Tips

-Fire Resistant Plants

-BBQ grill away from the house

The safety and security of our customers is important to all of us at SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood. By taking these preventative measures, you take steps toward avoiding fire damage and the loss and suffering it can cause. If you do find yourself affected by smoke damage, fire damage or other emergencies, we’re here to help. Call us 24/7 at 562-420-0030.

SMOKE AND SOOT CAUSE EXTENSIVE DAMAGE

7/2/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage SMOKE AND SOOT CAUSE EXTENSIVE DAMAGE Ceiling affected by smoke damage in Long Beach residence.

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor.  SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood has smoke damage expertise and experience, allowing 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 NE Long Beach/Lakewood 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 SERVPRO of NE Long Beach/Lakewood today: 562-420-0030