Recent Fire Damage Posts

How to Select a Fire Extinguisher

11/24/2020 (Permalink)

Fire Extinguisher how to use directions - image of burning pan in kitchen Tips to remember when using a fire extinguisher

One of the surest safeguards against a residential or commercial fire is a well-placed fire extinguisher. However, different types are required to put out different kinds of fire. Keep in mind the following facts when purchasing a fire extinguisher.

A-Type

The first type of extinguisher rating is the “A” classification, which means that it is an effective fire suppressant against ordinary combustibles. A typical home fire in a garbage can or wood pile is of this type. A water-based extinguisher will usually only be rated for this type of fire.

 B-Type

Oil-based fires comprise the “B” classification. It is important not to use a water-filled fire extinguisher on an oil fire, as this can cause it to spread laterally while the flaming oil floats on top of the water. 

C-Type

The “C” classification involves combustible fumes, such as those from gasoline or aerosols. Carbon dioxide, foam and power-based extinguishers are the most common types rated to deal with these fires. 


An extinguisher rated to put out an electrical fire is also C Rated and is essential for fire suppression. Most of the above powder and foam types of extinguishers can put out an electrical fire, since these materials coat the surface of the appliance and prevent oxygen from reaching the burning components. Any electrical fire that gets out of hand should be abandoned. 

Remember that many smaller and more affordable fire extinguisher models are only designed for a single use. Larger ones with a capacity indicator on the handle can be used multiple times, but they must be refilled. Many extinguishers are rated to handle multiple fire types, so choose one with the versatility necessary for your home or business.

SERVPRO of Denver West is a full fire restoration company and we can bring the affected area back to its original condition.

"Like it never even happened."

How Much Does It Cost to Repair Fire Damage?

11/5/2020 (Permalink)

When your home suffers a fire, there are all sorts of ways damage can occur. In addition to the actual flames, you have to worry about damage related to smoke, soot and the water and chemicals used to extinguish the blaze. 

In many instances, your homeowner’s policy will cover much of your costs. That said, you may have to pay for some of the cleanup yourself. Whatever the case, it’s important to know the costs associated with restoring a home after a fire, so you can make smart decisions as you approach what can often seem like an overwhelming project.

Water Damage

While extinguishing a fire is far superior to allowing its spread, the process comes with some serious drawbacks. Extinguishing a fire requires water and/or chemicals that can result in additional destruction. For instance, floors and carpeting are especially susceptible to mold growth if not dried shortly after being soaked. A heavy-duty fire hose can ruin all sorts of materials in your home and, in certain instances, even destroy some of its walls. 

Depending on the extent and nature of the fire extinguishing process, you can expect to pay from $1,000 and $4,000 to repair water damage. To repair any chemical contamination, you will typically have to pay from 1,000 to $2,500. After a fire has been extinguished, you will need professional dehumidification as soon as possible. For chemical damages, you may require chemical sealers to prevent further contamination from residues down the line.

Whatever the case, it’s important to work with a licensed professional who can determine the exact category and class of the damage, and provide the correct mitigating solution.

Soot Cleanup

Once you deal with the water, you will need to turn your attention toward any soot leftover from the fire. Soot is a black flaky substance largely composed of amorphous carbon, which results after the incomplete burning of organic matter such as wood.

Unfortunately, it can penetrate and damage all sorts of interior items, including carpets, draperies and walls. 

There are two basic types of soot, and each requires a different cleanup method. 

  • Dry soot: Cleaned with dry sponges and low-alkali detergent
  • Oily soot - Cleaned with high-alkali detergents and an extensive rinse.

The longer soot is left in place, the harder it will be to restore your home. It’s important to know that improper cleaning techniques can spread soot around a home and make it even harder to clean. What’s more, you will need to have your air ducts and furnace/air conditioning filters cleaned to prevent them from spreading soot throughout your home. 

Professional soot removal and cleaning will generally cost from $2,000 and $6,000. It’s generally best to consult a professional to find out if it might be cheaper to simply discard and replace some affected items. While textiles and certain other items may be salvageable; others may need to be replaced entirely.

Smoke Damage Restoration

Restoring smoke damage shouldn’t begin until water and soot destruction has been addressed. This vital step will include eliminating any harmful or unpleasant odors. Similar to soot, smoke damage worsens the longer it is left untreated. Smoke can penetrate furniture, clothing, carpets and many other items in a home, resulting in a foul smell that seems almost impossible to remove. Eliminating it requires deodorizing furniture, performing ozone smoke removal and cleaning your HVAC system.

Smoke damage restoration will typically range from $200 to $1,000, depending on the extent of the damage and the affected materials.

Textile and Furniture Deodorizing 

Only professional deodorizing can eliminate the smoke smell from carpets, furniture, clothing and other home textiles. Thermal fogging is one effective method used to eradicate odors. Using the same physical properties the smoke used to permeate the fabric, this technique relies on chemicals to reliably remove foul odors for good. 

The size of your home and the number of affected items will determine the cost, which typically ranges from $200 to $600.

Working with a Professional

When it comes to restoring your home after a fire, there are a lot of nuances that go into the process. Improper, delayed or inadequate cleaning can worsen the problem and turn an affordable process into a major operation requiring tens of thousands of dollars. This is why it’s so important to quickly contact a professional service who has the knowledge and agility to respond to your needs in a timely, efficient manner. 

SERVPRO of Denver East specializes in flawless fire and water damage restoration. Empowered by extensive training, modern equipment and expert personnel, we can quickly restore your home to pre-fire condition. Contact our team to learn more.

Does Liability Insurance Cover Fire Damage?

7/28/2020 (Permalink)

Structure fires can lay waste to homes or commercial buildings in mere minutes, and the resulting damage can be astronomical. 

Regardless of how a fire starts—be it a result of neglect, natural disasters, arson, or a ‘perfect storm’ scenario—recovering from a fire is often a long and arduous process. Considering this, it’s no surprise so many home and business owners look to insurance coverage that specifically includes protection against losses due to fires. 

With all of the different kinds of insurance you could buy to protect your property from fire damage losses, you might find yourself wondering, “If I buy basic liability insurance, will fire damage be covered?”

SERVPRO of West Denver specializes in fire damage restoration. We know how catastrophic a fire can be, and we understand the disruption they can cause to the normal operation of business or home life. We also know how insurance policies often operate when the time comes to make a claim for fire damage losses. So, in this blog post, we’re going to be answering the question as to whether or not basic liability insurance covers fire damage. 

Liability Insurance, Defined

According to Investopedia, liability insurance:

“...provides the insured party with protection against claims resulting from injuries and damage to people or property.”

Here’s an example of how liability insurance might work in the case of a fire: 

  1. A kitchen fire breaks out in a restaurant. The fire causes damage to the physical structure, and there are no injuries.

  2. The property adjacent to the restaurant incurs fire-related damages. This could be due to smoke exposure or fire propagation.

  3. The restaurant owner had an existing liability insurance policy. The liability policy included specific provisions for liability coverage in the event of a fire.

  4. The restaurant owner did not have insurance coverage against fire-related losses for themselves. Whether this insurance wasn’t purchased because of budgetary reasons or some other reason, the restaurant owner has no recourse to recoup the losses to their own property as a result of the fire. 

However, because the liability insurance carried by the restaurant protected the business owner from third-party legal action resulting from fire damage, the fire’s impact on the adjacent building would be covered by the liability insurance policy. 

When You Think Liability, Think ‘Third-Party’

It’s important to note the distinction between property insurance and liability insurance. When a homeowner buys insurance coverage for their home, that coverage typically includes fire damage that impacts the property in question. However, without liability insurance that specifically protects the homeowner from claims made by a third party, a fire that spreads to a neighboring property might not be covered. 

It’s important to dive deep into the terms and conditions of any insurance policy you may be considering for your home or business. Because fire damages can be so costly, it’s worth the extra time to make sure you have a full understanding of what is and what isn’t covered by the policy. 

Arson

In some cases, fires are intentionally started by those engaging in a criminal activity. As long as the arsonist was not listed as a beneficiary of the policy that protected the home or business, the fire damage would be covered by the property insurance policy. 

Motor Vehicles

Just about every US state has a law that requires drivers to carry Public Liability and Property Damage (PLPD) insurance. This insurance kicks in whenever damage is done to persons or property as a result of an accident caused by the driver. 

However, this kind of coverage is restricted to third parties, not to the driver him/herself or the vehicle itself.

So, if a motor vehicle operator who was only covered by basic PLPD insurance strikes a utility pole and starts a fire that totals her car, the PLPD insurance would cover the damage done to the utility pole and any damage to any person or property aside from the insured and her vehicle.

Comprehensive insurance would be required in order for damage done to the vehicle itself to be covered. 

Have Fire Remediation Questions? Contact Us

Fire damage doesn’t have to mean ‘the end’ for a home or commercial building. In many cases, smaller fires can leave things looking worse than they may actually be. SERVPRO of West Denver has the tools, techniques, and trained staff needed to restore fire-damaged interiors safely, effectively, and quickly.

If your home or business has been damaged by a fire, contact us to schedule an on-site visit with one of our fire damage experts.

Cleaning Up After a Fire: 5 Things to Throw Away

7/28/2020 (Permalink)

We all have a place we call home, where we retire at the end of a hard day's work. Having our home taken away from us devastates us beyond measure. However, the dangers of fires, natural catastrophes and theft remain closer than we may think. When a fire breaks out, the cleaning up process forms a key factor to recovery and healing from the traumatic experience. A hard pill to swallow comes when we realize that certain cherished items may have to go away! 

Medication

When a fire razes your home, any medicine present may absorb the high temperature and change the chemical components. The medicine also absorbs the soot and the contents of the fire extinguisher. Ingesting smoke and the contents of the fire extinguisher may expose you and your family to health complications. There are no buts on medications when it comes to choosing what to throw away after a fire. 

Food and Other Consumables

The smoke from the fire and fire extinguisher chemicals contaminate any food products. Food products include perishable and non-perishable food products.

Exposure to heat also alters the chemical elements of the food items, including the containers used for storing the food. Cloth packaging, metal tins, cardboard and plastics all change their chemical composition after exposure to high heat levels. Therefore, do not compromise on health at any standard.

Food stored in the freezer may have a slight chance of non-contamination, but it is better to be safe, discard the food. The trauma after a fire coupled with health complications from ingesting contaminated food may weigh down on your recovery process. 

Cosmetic Products

The standard while deciding what to throw away after a fire should focus on any products of a chemical nature. Cosmetic products such as make-up, oil products, perfumes and hair extensions have a chemical component. The high-temperature exposure during the fire may alter their chemical composition. Warped casings show that the fire contaminated the products. Fire extinguisher chemicals and soot add another chemical component into the products. Applying any of these contaminated products to your skin may result in an allergic reaction that may add to your woes. 

Clothing Material

Any clothes and bedding in the house catch fire. Thus, sort out all the burnt garments and throw them away. Some clothes may have escaped the wrath of the fire but may have soot and fire extinguisher chemicals on their surface. If the clothes belong to children, precaution dictates that you discard them too. However, the use of the appropriate detergents may help to rehabilitate burnt clothes and bedding. 

Burnt Electrical Equipment

Electrical equipment within the house has power cords and wiring that may burn during a fire. Electrical equipment that show signs of damage qualifies in the things to throw away after a fire. Compromised electrical equipment could result in another fire due to short circuits. Equipment includes computers, coffee makers, laundry machine, iron box and television sets. 

Recovering from the trauma after a fire occurs over some time. The healing process may take time and patience from your side. We at SERVPRO of West Denver understand your pain at this trying time and wish to walk you through the healing process. Let us help you rebuild your new home. We help in the clean-up process and follow up on the tiring process of the insurance claim. To get started, contact us today!

Grilling Fires Peak in July

6/26/2020 (Permalink)

Fire damage from grilling Grilling Safety Tips from SERVPRO

SERVPRO® Alerts Local Grill Masters: Grilling Fires Peak in July

Fire clean-up professionals offer Denver area homeowners tips for safe outdoor cooking.

The summer grilling season is here, and outdoor cooking and socially-distanced picnic gatherings are a welcome change for families eager to get out and enjoy the warm weather. As families and friends prepare their next outdoor feast, Travis Ellerbroek of SERVPRO of Denver West, a local fire and disaster remediation specialist, urges Denver-area property owners to keep some sobering “grilling fire facts” from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) in mind.

  • Gas grills, hibachis, and barbecues are involved in an average of 8,900 home fires each year, including 3,900 structure fires and 4,900 outdoor fires. Charcoal or other solid-fueled grills contribute to another 1,300 home fires per year.
  • An average of 19,700 patients each year visit emergency rooms because of injuries involving grills. Nearly half (9,500 or 48%) of the injuries are thermal burns from fire (about 4,300) and from contact with hot objects (about 5,200). Children under five account for an average of 2,000 of those contact-type burns.
  • July is the peak month for grill fires (18%), including both structure, outdoor or unclassified fires, followed by June (15%), May (13%) and August (12%).

According to the NFPA, three out of five households own a gas grill – and gas grills are the chief culprit in home grilling fires, and while grill-related fires peak between May and

August, nearly half of home grillers use their grill year-round. 

All grills

  • Use your propane or charcoal grill outdoors only. Place your grill away from your home or deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area, and never leave your grill unattended.
  • Keep your grill clean. Remove grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill. Always make sure your gas grill lid is open before lighting it.

Propane Grills

  • Check the gas tank hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year.
  • 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 five minutes before re-lighting it.

Charcoal Grills

  • A charcoal chimney starter uses newspaper as a fuel to start the charcoal. If you use a starter fluid instead, use only charcoal starter fluid. If you choose an electric charcoal starter, make sure to use an extension cord for outdoor use.
  • Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire.
  • When you are finished grilling, let the coals cool completely before transferring them to a metal container for disposal.

Even if no one is injured, a home fire can be devastating. It can destroy not just property but priceless memories and create chaos in the aftermath. Cleaning-up after a fire can feel

overwhelming because it often involves smoke and water damage beyond the damage from the flames. While we hope that these guidelines will help Denver-area homeowners have a safe, fire-free grilling season, accidents can happen. If you do experience a structure fire, our SERVPRO-trained professionals can help get you on the road to normal, managing clean-up efforts and helping with insurance and recovery. When disaster strikes, our goal, always, is to make it seem "Like it never even happened."

SERVPRO specializes in fire and water cleanup and restoration services and repair services, helping to remediate damage for both commercial and residential customers. For more information on SERVPRO of Denver West, please contact our office at 303-576-6868.

SERVPRO Smoke & Soot Removal

12/17/2019 (Permalink)

Raging Fire in home Smoke and soot damage can cause an odor throughout the building

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 Denver 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 – (303) 576-6868

What To Do After a House Fire

11/21/2019 (Permalink)

soot and charred kitchen fire Fire Damage-what to do

A house fire is an unpredictable disaster. The US fire departments report that approximately 354,400 residential structures are destroyed by fire every year. Unfortunately when it happens, it can be a terrifying experience, and can change your life entirely.

More importantly, moving on with your life after a house fire can be devastating since you have no idea on who to call, what to do next, or even where to start. But it doesn't have to. Below is what to do after a house fire to help you and your family get started during this difficult time.

1. MAKE IMPORTANT CALLS

After a house fire, call your family members who may have been away and let them know what occurred and if everyone is safe. 

2. FIND A SAFE PLACE TO STAY

House fires are overwhelming especially if there are children and pets involved. You need to relocate to a comfortable and safe place even for one night to help you figure out what to do next and for your family to rest.

If your friends and family aren't available, you can reach out to a disaster relief agency such as the Red Cross. They can provide a temporary shelter for free.

3. CALL YOUR INSURANCE AGENT

After relocating to a safe place, you should file your claim immediately. The sooner you contact your insurance agent, the sooner the documentation and reimbursement process begins. Most insurers can also cater for daily expenses also referred to as loss of use fund especially if you lost your debit and credit cards in the fire. Your agents can also help find abatement or cleaning services.

4. IS YOUR HOME SAFE TO RE-ENTER?

House fires tend to weaken your home structures as well as leave toxic fumes from the burned stuffs. If you want to get back to the house to salvage some items, wait for a fire marshal to declare it safe. Also, you need to speak with your insurance agent or adjuster before you re-enter your home to avoid problems during reimbursement.

5. SALVAGE UNDAMAGED POSSESSIONS

If your house was partly damaged by fire and deemed safe to enter, you can remove undamaged items. It is recommended to clean the salvaged possessions preferably by fires restoration professionals like SERVPRO. SERVPRO of Denver West  have the tools and experience designed to restore items affected by fire. Our Franchise has vaults available to store your salvaged items, during the restoration process.

You can also rent a storage unit to store the salvaged items. This way, your possessions will not be damaged further or make it difficult for the repairs. The cost of the storage units depends on the size among other factors, and may be covered by your insurance policy. Always ask your agent or adjuster for clarification.

6. MAKE A LIST OF ALL DAMAGED ITEMS

Make sure you list all items that were damaged or lost whether big or small in the fire to ensure you are reimbursed. This is because most insurance companies need detailed information such as serial numbers, models and receipts. You can also search online for bank statements for proof of purchase. However, it can be difficult if everything was completely destroyed.

If crucial documents such as driver's licenses, passports, birth certificates, and tax information among others were destroyed too, you should list them too. Your insurance agent will inform you on the documents you need for reimbursement so you can replace them first.

When disaster strikes, it can be a stressful and traumatizing experience especially when trying to figure out what to do after a house fire. But don't fret, you can count on SERVPRO of Denver West. We have the tools, expertise and experience to help you clean, repair and restore your damaged property "Like it never even happened." Moreover, we work hand in hand with your insurance company to quicken the claim process.

For more information on what to do after a house fire, including steps to repair damage, please contact us.

SERVPRO of Denver West 303-576-6868

Fire Alarms at Home

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

fire alarm Make Sure Your Fire Alarms are Operating Properly.

Smoke alarms are a key part of a home fire escape plan. When there is a fire, smoke spreads fast. Working smoke alarms give you early warning so you can get outside quickly.

SAFETY TIPS

• Install smoke alarms in every bedroom. They should also be outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home. Install alarms in the basement.

• Large homes may need extra smoke alarms.

• It is best to use interconnected smoke alarms. When one smoke alarm sounds, they all sound.

• Test all smoke alarms at least once a month. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.

• Current alarms on the market employ different types of technology including multi-sensing, which could include smoke and carbon monoxide combined.

• Today’s smoke alarms will be more technologically advanced to respond to a multitude of fire conditions, yet mitigate false alarms.

• A smoke alarm should be on the ceiling or high on a wall. Keep smoke alarms away from the kitchen to reduce false alarms. They should be at least 10 feet (3 meters) from the stove.

• People who are hard-of-hearing or deaf can use special alarms. These alarms have strobe lights and bed shakers.

• Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

Facts 

  • A closed-door may slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire.
  • Smoke alarms should be installed inside every sleeping room, outside each separate sleeping area, and on every level. Smoke alarms should be connected so when one sounds, they all sound. Most homes do not have this level of protection.
  • Roughly 3 out of 5 fire deaths happen in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.

Click here National Fire Protection Organization for more about fire safety education and tips.

Fire Safety

6/13/2019 (Permalink)

Educate your children about fire safety.

According to an NFPA® report on youth and wildfire preparedness, only 21% of students interviewed in wildfire-prone regions have a family preparedness plan for when they are home alone. Even more amazing is that only 10% had evacuation bags prepared for themselves at home. However, 65% of these young people were aware that a fire could happen at any time and anywhere.

Discuss with your family what to do before and when a wildfire happens. Take a moment to discuss what the plan is when your young family members are home alone or if they are home, caring for younger children. Some ideas for developing your family plan include:

Connecting with a trusted neighbor close by who your children know who can evacuate them.
Or, setting up a schedule with other working parents in the neighborhood, so that one is always at home and can make sure the children are safe.
Packing a Go Bag with treasured items, water, food, prescriptions, etc. That they can grab and leave quickly with.
Practice together with their pets if time allows to be able to crate them and go.
Have a designated contact, such as an out of town family member’s number programmed into their cell phone so that you can find each other quickly.
The most important thing that you can do as a family is to make sure your home and the landscape immediately surrounding your home is well maintained for wildfire safety. You want to make sure that those you care about are safe and secure. For more information about wildfire safety tips check out NFPA’s Firewise USA® webpage.

Please visit the link below for more information: https://community.nfpa.org

Commercial Fires Prevention

2/25/2019 (Permalink)

Leading Causes of Structure Fires

Commercial Fires Prevention

During the five-year period of 2007-2011, NFPA estimates that U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 3,340 fires in office properties per year which include general business offices, banks, veterinary clinics, research offices, engineering facilities, mailing firms and post offices. $112 million in property damages were reported.

When Are Commercial Fires Likely to Occur?

The chance of a commercial fire occurring during operating hours is extremely high. One-third of commercial office fires occur between business hours. The more populated a business is, the higher the chance of a fire occurring. Businesses occupying these commercial properties should inform their staff of fire dangers and how to prevent one.

Prevention Tips

  • Turn off Coffee Makers, toaster ovens and kitchen appliances
  • Have a designated staff member ensure kitchen appliances are turned off at the end of the day
  • Always plug major appliances, like refrigerators, stoves, washers and dryers, directly into a wall outlet
  • Never use an extension cord with a major appliance — it can easily overheat and start a fire.
  • Always plug small appliances directly into a wall outlet.
  • Unplug small appliances when you are not using them.
  • Don’t allow space heaters in an office setting.
  • Keep lamps, light fixtures and light bulbs away from anything that can burn.
  • Use light bulbs that match the recommended wattage on the lamp or fixture.
  • Check electrical cords on appliances often. Replace cracked, damaged and loose electrical cords. Do not try to repair them
  • Do not overload wall outlets.
  • Insert plugs fully into sockets.
  • Never force a three prong cord into a two-slot outlet.
  • Replace worn, old or damaged extension cords right away.
  • Use extension cords for temporary purposes only.
  • Avoid putting cords where they can be damaged or pinched, like under a carpet or rug.
  • Do not overload power strips.
  • Use power strips that have internal overload protection.

Information provided by FEMA and the National Fire Protection Association.

The Camp Fire Devastates Paradise

2/7/2019 (Permalink)

We Care.


SERVPRO of Aurora Cares

The Camp fire of Northern California was one of the most deadly wildfires since the 1918 Cloquet fire. Local restoration companies were swamped with fire restoration projects, and only able to schedule restoration appointments weeks out. The Disaster Recovery Team at SERVPRO of Aurora was invited to Paradise California in order to provide fire damage repair & restoration services for home and business owners. The Disaster Recovery Team eagerly accepted the invitation, prepared their vehicles and set out on the road to Paradise.

The residents of Paradise left a lasting impression on one of our Disaster Recovery Team representatives; Sarah C. shared her account of the time she spent in Paradise.

“I arrived in Paradise on December 16th, and the devastation was insurmountable! It was foggy and rainy that day with the eerie feeling of a town stuck in time from the evacuation over a month prior. Buildings and neighborhoods were completely burnt to the ground with only a few structures still standing, practically untouched from the flames. These would be the residents and business owners I would spend the rest of my time getting to know during my time in Paradise. Some folks lost their home and neighborhood, but their business was spared, or just the opposite, losing their business or place of employment and finding their house to be the only one standing. Getting to know the kind hearted people of this community was reassuring because I know they will bring it back to the beautiful town it once was. I was truly inspired by the stories and brave acts of the residents in Paradise who helped neighbors, animals, and strangers through this difficult time. I wish all the best to them in a time of stress, reflection, and rebuilding.”

The SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team send out their thoughts and prayers to the residents of Paradise. We know that the months to come may be difficult. Fire restoration, mitigation and rebuild is not always a quick and easy process, but we will do everything we can to make it “Like it never even happened.”

“Our hearts go out to the residents of Paradise and those affected by the Campfire. Words cannot express what the residents of Paradise have experienced, and are still experiencing; we offer our deepest condolences.”

Prevent a Deep Fried Turkey Fire

11/21/2018 (Permalink)

Flames from a fire  in a turkey fryer Prevent a Turkey Fire!

Tips to help prevent deep fried turkey accidents

  • Keep outdoor fryers off decks, out of garages and a safe distance away from trees and other structures.
  • Make sure the turkey is thawed and dry before cooking. Ice or water that mixes into the hot oil can cause flare-ups.
  • Watch the weather. Never operate a fryer outdoors in the rain or snow.
  • Place the fryer on a level surface, and avoid moving it once it's in use.
  • Leave 2 feet between the tank and the burner when using a propane-powered fryer.
  • Follow the manufacturer's instructions to avoid overfilling. Oil can ignite when it makes contact with the burner.
  • Choose a smaller turkey for frying. A bird that's 8 to 10 pounds is best; pass on turkeys over 12 pounds.
  • Never leave fryers unattended.
  • Purchase a fryer with temperature controls, and watch the oil temperature carefully. Cooking oil that is heated beyond its smoke point can catch fire. If you notice the oil is smoking, turn the fryer off.
  • Turn off the burner before lowering the turkey into the oil. Once the turkey is submerged, turn the burner on.
  • Wear protective eye wear to shield your eyes, use oven mitts to protect your hands and arms and keep an "ABC" or grease-rated fire extinguisher close by. Do not to use water or a garden hose on a fire related to Turkey Fryers.
  • Skip the stuffing when frying turkey, and avoid water-based marinades.
  • Keep children and pets away from the fryer at all times.
  • Once finished, carefully remove the pot from the burner, place it on a level surface and cover to let the oil cool overnight before disposing.
  • Choose an oil-less fryer. This uses infrared heat, rather than oil, to cook the turkey.

After your turkey is prepared, remember these Thanksgiving food safety tips to help ensure your family has a safe, enjoyable holiday. 

If you do face a fire please call  SERVPRO of Denver West 303-576-6868

We are the professional  restoration company ready to make it "Like it never even happened."

What To Do After A Fire

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth or coffee filters over air registers.

What NOT To Do After A Fire

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting us.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

Prepare Your Home or Business For a Wildfire

8/16/2018 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO at 303-576-6868

Prepare your home or business for a wildfire. If possible, use Class A roofing material. This includes tile, slate, or asphalt. You can also use Class B pressure-treated shingles or shakes. Make sure that you have smoke alarms near every bedroom or office and in each zone of your house or business. Test smoke alarms monthly and change their batteries annually. Also, consider installing fire sprinklers.  Outside your home, make sure you have enough garden hose available to reach any part of your property. Designate water sources and make sure that the fire department can access them if they need to. Water sources are areas such as swimming pools, ponds, lakes, wells and fire hydrants. Create an emergency escape plan. Speak to town officials to learn what the evacuation route is for your area. Discuss this evacuation route with everyone in your family and your employees. Ensure family members who live nearby know the route and have means of transportation. Also, stay informed by signing up for emergency text or alert messages from your town. Finally, don’t forget to create an emergency kit. 

During a Wildfire

Prepare to evacuate. Listen to emergency channels and know the status of the fire. Put emergency supplies and must-have items in the car so you can evacuate quickly. Evacuate immediately if told to do so. If you have time, there are steps you can take to help protect your property when you evacuate. These steps include:
 
  • Moving furniture to the center of rooms and taking down drapes and curtains to prevent combustion.
  • Closing all windows and doors to prevent drafts and reduce heat.
  • Shutting off natural gas from its source.
  • Turning on all lights in your property so that firefighters can more easily see it through smoke.
Evacuate Safely. Remain calm while evacuating. If you’re driving, roll up your windows and close the air vents. The smoke from the fire can get into your car, irritate your eyes and cause breathing problems. Also, turn your headlights on and keep your doors unlocked. In the event that something happens to you while driving, locked doors can slow your rescue. 

After a Wildfire

Return only when it is safe. Do not go back to your property until officials declare it safe to do so. Watch out for ash pits and hot spots. Even after a fire is extinguished, small fires can flare up without warning. Check your house and surrounding property for hot spots and extinguish them immediately. Also, be on the lookout for ash pits. These are holes filled with hot ashes left by burned trees. Mark ash pits to help prevent others from falling into them and injuring themselves. Document the damage. Take photos and video and make a written list documenting your damaged property. Contact your insurance company immediately to report the damage. Wildfires are some of the most destructive forces of nature. There isn’t much that can be done to deter a wildfire’s path. Fortunately, there are ways to help mitigate property damage and keep your employees and loved ones safe. By following the information in this article, you can help increase your chances of prevailing through a wildfire.  Please visit the following website for further information: https://www.thehartford.com/claims/wildfire-safety 

Prepare Your Home or Business For a Wildfire

8/16/2018 (Permalink)

Prepare your home or business for a wildfire. If possible, use Class A roofing material. This includes tile, slate, or asphalt. You can also use Class B pressure-treated shingles or shakes. Make sure that you have smoke alarms near every bedroom or office and in each zone of your house or business. Test smoke alarms monthly and change their batteries annually. Also, consider installing fire sprinklers.  Outside your home, make sure you have enough garden hose available to reach any part of your property. Designate water sources and make sure that the fire department can access them if they need to. Water sources are areas such as swimming pools, ponds, lakes, wells and fire hydrants. Create an emergency escape plan. Speak to town officials to learn what the evacuation route is for your area. Discuss this evacuation route with everyone in your family and your employees. Ensure family members who live nearby know the route and have means of transportation. Also, stay informed by signing up for emergency text or alert messages from your town. Finally, don’t forget to create an emergency kit. 

During a Wildfire

Prepare to evacuate. Listen to emergency channels and know the status of the fire. Put emergency supplies and must-have items in the car so you can evacuate quickly. Evacuate immediately if told to do so. If you have time, there are steps you can take to help protect your property when you evacuate. These steps include:
 

  • Moving furniture to the center of rooms and taking down drapes and curtains to prevent combustion.
  • Closing all windows and doors to prevent drafts and reduce heat.
  • Shutting off natural gas from its source.
  • Turning on all lights in your property so that firefighters can more easily see it through smoke.

Evacuate Safely. Remain calm while evacuating. If you’re driving, roll up your windows and close the air vents. The smoke from the fire can get into your car, irritate your eyes and cause breathing problems. Also, turn your headlights on and keep your doors unlocked. In the event that something happens to you while driving, locked doors can slow your rescue. 

After a Wildfire

Return only when it is safe. Do not go back to your property until officials declare it safe to do so. Watch out for ash pits and hot spots. Even after a fire is extinguished, small fires can flare up without warning. Check your house and surrounding property for hot spots and extinguish them immediately. Also, be on the lookout for ash pits. These are holes filled with hot ashes left by burned trees. Mark ash pits to help prevent others from falling into them and injuring themselves. Document the damage. Take photos and video and make a written list documenting your damaged property. Contact your insurance company immediately to report the damage. Wildfires are some of the most destructive forces of nature. There isn’t much that can be done to deter a wildfire’s path. Fortunately, there are ways to help mitigate property damage and keep your employees and loved ones safe. By following the information in this article, you can help increase your chances of prevailing through a wildfire.

Please visit the following website for further information: https://www.thehartford.com/claims/wildfire-safety

What Should You Do After a Fire

5/21/2018 (Permalink)

Call The Professionals!

What to Expect After a Fire

Fire and smoke damage is destructive and finding a restoration/mitigation company can be daunting. When it comes to fire and smoke damage restoration, SERVPRO professionals are trained and follow an extensive and thorough restoration process in order to get your home or business back to normal.

Each fire/smoke damage case is unique and is treated as such by SERVPRO professionals. SERVPRO professionals will compose a detailed plan to rid your property of smoke and soot damage. Smoke odor latches onto and penetrates the surfaces of walls, ceilings, clothes, upholstered furniture, books, electronics and more. It is crucial that all affected contents and surfaces are properly sanitized by professionals. Oftentimes it can be difficult to determine the source of the smoke odor. Experienced professionals know where to look for smoke and soot damage and how to best approach the restoration process.

If smoke damage is not taken care of by a professional, your property and its inhabitants may face greater damage. Smoke and soot can destroy the integrity of your home or business, damaging the ventilation system, air ducts, insulation, wall studs and even the framing/structure.

Different Smoke Odors

Cleaning smoke and soot damage yourself or using a basic cleaning service runs the risk of recurring smoke odor which can cause respiratory problems. Smoke odor can be harmful depending on what type of material was burned. Smoke that comes from wood framing causes a “campfire” smell which lets off acetic acid, benzene, carbon monoxide (CO), formaldehyde, formic acid, heavy metals, nitrogen-oxides (NO2), phenols, sulfur dioxide (SO2).

Cooking fire smoke is very difficult to remove and has a lingering smell of burnt animal fat/protein. Grease splatter from a cooking fire requires specific cleaning techniques that only a professional can provide.

When plastic is burned, it releases dangerous chemicals such as hydrochloric acid, sulfur dioxide, dioxins, furans and heavy metals, as well as particulates and are known to cause respiratory ailments which are potentially carcinogenic.

Fireplace wood fires also emits hazardous emissions, such as particulates, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and other emissions that can be dangerous for health.




Who Are The Professionals?

SERVPRO provides 24/7 Emergency response. After the initial emergency call a crew of certified SERVPRO professionals will promptly respond to your fire damage and arrive onsite prepared to assess, plan and arrange resources to restore your home or business back to what it once was.

What Will SERVPRO Do?

Board Up and Security

Fires can destroy doors, walls and windows, leaving your property vulnerable to additional loss from weather or theft. SERVPRO professionals have the equipment and capabilities to provide board up for your home or business. Your home or business may need additional security. SERVPRO can also provide fencing or even security to oversee your property.

Demolition

All damaged structural material is removed from the structure in order for the mitigation and restoration to take place. Demolition is a planned procedure, completed with the utmost care and strategy.

Cleanup

The local fire department will use fire retardants and water to extinguish the flames. SERVPRO will assess and examine the extent of damage to the structure, walls, ceilings, floors, ventilation/HVAC system and contents while composing a thorough plan for mitigation and restoration.

Contents

Clothes, upholstered furniture, books, electronics and more that are affected by smoke may be salvaged and sanitized. All affected items deemed salvageable are sanitized and deodorized using specialized solutions and equipment. Contents go through an extensive inventory process ensuring all items are accounted for and stored in a secure location.

Smoke Odor Damage

4/12/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage

Areas of a Home Commonly Affected by Fire Damage

The level of damage varies depending on where a fire originated. An enclosed space typically will not have as much smoke damage as a large, open room with multiple appliances and a lot of wiring in the walls. Additionally, certain parts of a room may experience more damage than others.

Ceilings
 
Hot air rises, the highest concentration of smoke residue is commonly found directly above where a fire started - usually on the ceiling above the point of origin. Nail heads in the ceiling (and walls) can also attract smoke particles, which appear as an outline of a ring around them.

Corners
 
When smoke particles are ionized - or have an electrical charge - they are attracted to certain surfaces. Smoke produced by burning plastic carries a stronger charge than smoke from wood, paper or cotton. This causes smoke residue to form in clusters that look like cobwebs in the corners of rooms where walls and ceilings meet.

Walls & Windows 
 
Windows and exterior walls are normally cooler than the center of a room and because smoke  travels to areas with a lower temperature, it's common to find smoke residue on outside walls and in spaces behind drapes and blinds, even more so than surrounding surfaces.

If you notice a lingering smoke smell in your home or business call SERVPRO at 303-576-6868

SERVPRO Tips

What To Do After A Fire

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

What NOT To Do After A Fire

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting us.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

When a Fire Breaks Out!

1/19/2018 (Permalink)

House Fire A Home Affected by Fire
If a Fire Starts:
  • Know how to safely operate a fire extinguisher
  • Remember to GET OUT, STAY OUT and CALL 9-1-1 or your local emergency phone number.
  • Yell "Fire!" several times and go outside right away. If you live in a building with elevators, use the stairs. Leave all your things where they are and save yourself.
  • If closed doors or handles are warm or smoke blocks your primary escape route, use your second way out. Never open doors that are warm to the touch.
  • If you must escape through smoke, get low and go under the smoke to your exit. Close doors behind you.
  • If smoke, heat or flames block your exit routes, stay in the room with doors closed. Place a wet towel under the door and call the fire department or 9-1-1. Open a window and wave a brightly colored cloth or flashlight to signal for help.
  • Once you are outside, go to your meeting place and then send one person to call the fire department. If you cannot get to your meeting place, follow your family emergency communication plan.

If your clothes catch on fire:

  • Stop what you’re doing.
  • Drop to the ground and cover your face if you can.
  • Roll over and over or back and forth until the flames go out. Running will only make the fire burn faster.

 THEN:

Once the flames are out, cool the burned skin with water for three to five minutes. Call for medical attention.

http://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/types-of-emergencies/fire/if-a-fire-starts

If your home or business has been affected by fire call SERVPRO of Denver West at 303-576-6868.

Why Choose SERVPRO of Denver West?

12/21/2017 (Permalink)

Fire damages Affected Patio Wall

When your home is affected by fire, smoke or soot damage SERVPRO of Denver West can provide fire damage restoration services. Every loss is unique and needs to be treated as such. SERVPRO of Denver West strives to provide excellent service by employing skilled and experienced Crew Chiefs and Project Coordinators to ensure that each home suffering a loss is treated uniquely and professionally.

SERVPRO of Denver West was prepared to arrive equipped and ready to serve those affected by the Tubbs Fire in Northern California. Countless homes were significantly affected by smoke and soot damage as the fire had nearly reached the front lawn of homeowners and business owners properties. 

After providing fire restoration services for numerous homes in Northern California, SERVPRO of Denver West arrived back in Colorado to serve their community. On December 14th, SERVPRO of Denver West received a heart warming testimonial from a pleased customer from Northern California. 

"Your team did an outstanding job of removing the smoke damage from my apartment after the Northern California Fires. I commend Yovan Venegas and his team for their professionalism, expeditious service, thoroughness and kindness in making my home a welcome place to live again. Do know that I will recommend them to all people who need service due to fires, floods and other catastrophic events that happen to their homes and businesses. They are the BEST."

-Allison Lazarus

Fire at Fire Station 15!

12/1/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO trailer parked outside fire house SERVPRO of Denver West at Fire Station 15.

SERVPRO of Denver West responded immediately to  the fire damage facing Fire Station 15. A fast response is the key to help prevent additional damage and reduce the restoration cost.

SERVPRO of Denver West was on site to asses the damage facing Fire Station 15 and to begin the restoration process. 

News Coverage

An Aurora fire station under construction and set to open in a few months burned Wednesday afternoon.

Aurora Fire Rescue firefighters, stationed in a model home in a nearby subdivision, responded to the fire in their soon-to-be new home just before 5 p.m. according to Denver 7 News.

The television station reported flames were shooting from the roof of the Aurora Fire Station No. 15 in the Murphy Creek neighborhood.

No one was inside and no injuries were reported, the television station reported.

News 9 reported the fire station had been under construction since the summer and was set to open in the first part of 2018. It was being built to keep up with growth in the region.

The fire was confined mostly to the attic area and the cause of the blaze is under investigation by Aurora fire authorities. It is not believed that construction equipment started the fire. 

http://www.firehouse.com/news/12384096/fire-station-under-construction-burns-in-aurora-co

Avoid a House Fire When Frying a Turkey!

11/21/2017 (Permalink)

Turkey Grease Fire

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) warns about the dangers that come with gas-fueled turkey fryers, such as burns from hot oil or fire damage. On average, there are three times more turkey fryer claims during the holiday season than any other time of the year. The median cost for turkey fryer-related claims is almost $29,000. Follow this expert advice to know about common hazards of turkey fryers, how to prevent any injuries or damage, manage the risk, and decide if frying a turkey is even worth the risk.

Do's

Keep a fire extinguisher nearby

 Never use water on a grease fire. It will only spread the fire--and fast! Make sure to have an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby, and confirm that it hasn’t yet expired or is up-to-date on any necessary inspections. There’s nothing worse than trying to use a defunct fire extinguisher. Using an extinguisher will allow you to be far enough away while fighting any fires.

Beware of precipitation

 Falling rain and snow can lead to splattering of exposed oil or steam burns from contact with the hot cooker. Just as pouring hot water on a frozen windshield will crack it, having cold liquid hit hot oil will make it splatter or create unexpected steam that can burn.

Keep the fryer on a level surface

 Avoid accidental tipping and spills (which can lead to fire) by operating your turkey fryer on a solid, level surface at all times. These fryers are often tall and top-heavy, so ensure proper stabilization for the fryer on a level surface.

Keep children away

 Never ever let a pet or a child near the fryer. In this case, curiosity can kill. Protect small children and pets by keeping them away from the turkey fryer before, during, and after the turkey is getting fried. Even after cooking, the oil will be boiling hot and the fryer will still be subject to tipping over.

Test the process

 Before Thanksgiving or any other time you may want to fry a large bird, test out the process, and follow all this advice accordingly. When the cook is in a rush and trying something new and dangerous, corners are often cut, necessary precautions are not taken, and accidents happen. Test out the turkey fryer with another bird in order to understand the process and learn how to manage the risks days before everyone is hungry for the Thanksgiving meal.

Don'ts

Don't use a turkey fryer indoors

 Always use a turkey fryer outdoors, away from buildings, decks and anything else that can catch fire. Never use the turkey fryer in the garage either. Spilt oil can easily lead to unmanageable flames, putting your home, family, and friends in serious risk.

Do not leave a turkey fryer unattended

 Frying a turkey is at least a two-man operation. If something does go wrong, you’ll be grateful for that extra person to go and call for assistance. It’s also important that someone is watching the fryer for the duration of the cooking process, and the hot oil is dealt with after the cooking process is complete.

Do not forget to thaw the turkey first

 Never put a partially frozen turkey into hot oil, as ice and water can cause the oil to spill over and catch fire.

Do not use low quality cooking oil

 Because of the high temperatures of the cooking oil, you should use high quality oil that has a high smoke point, such as peanut or safflower oil. Anything less than that may cause severe smoke--not only ruining your turkey--but creating panic, and potentially leading to accident or injury.

Do not have inadequate home insurance coverage

 Aside from having to cook outdoors, you may really want to be as close to the house as you think is safely possible. Make sure that in the event of fire or smoke damage caused by using a turkey fryer, that your home insurance policy will cover the damage in the event of a claim. Making a claim can increase your monthly premiums--especially if the cause of the damage is seen as negligence with a turkey fryer. However, having adequate home insurance doesn’t excuse using a turkey fryer in any other way other than what is recommended.

For more helpful tips please visit:

https://expertbeacon.com

 

Do you have questions about Smoke and Soot Cleanup?

9/19/2017 (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 Aurora 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 – (303) 576-6868

Have Questions About Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?

9/7/2017 (Permalink)

Fire damage at an Aurora home.

https://www.SERVPRO.com/fire-smoke-damage-restoration

Step 1: Emergency Contact

The restoration process begins when you call the SERVPRO National Call Center, which is staffed 24 hours a day. Our representative will ask a series of questions regarding the fire damage event that will help us dispatch the nearest SERVPRO Franchise Professional with the appropriate equipment and resources.

Step 2: Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment

Our Professionals will carefully inspect and test adjoining rooms of your property to determine the extent of the fire, smoke, and soot damage. This step is crucial to developing a plan of action.

Step 3: Immediate Board-Up and Roof-Tarp Service

Fire damage can often compromise windows, walls, and roofs. To maintain security and to protect against further damage, the SERVPRO Franchise Professional can board up missing windows and walls and place tarps on damaged roofs.

Step 4: Water Removal and Drying (if water damage is present)

The water removal process begins almost immediately and removes the majority of the water. They will then use dehumidifiers and air movers to remove the remaining water and complete the drying process.

Step 5: Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces

The SERVPRO Franchise Professionals use specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from ceilings, walls, and other surfaces.

Step 6: Cleaning and Sanitizing

They will clean all of the restorable items and structures that were damaged by the fire. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to restore your belongings to pre-fire condition. They’re also trained to remove odors using industrial air scrubbers and fogging equipment.

Step 7: Restoration

Restoration is the final step—getting your home or business to its pre-fire condition. Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home or business.

Understanding How A Fire Can Start

9/7/2017 (Permalink)

Three Components That Fires Need To Exist

  1. Heat
  2. Oxygen 
  3. Fuel

With these three components a fire cant ignite.

Causes of House Fires 

  • Most fires start in the kitchen from overheated grease and unattended cooking
  • Overheated equipment 
  • Arson
  • Candles caused approximately 9,300 home fires between 2009 and 2013  

Fire Safety

Fires can start suddenly and spread quickly, damaging your home and furniture and putting lives in danger. They are caused in a variety of ways, but there are a few simple hints you can follow to prevent them starting.

  • Keep all fires and heaters well guarded, especially open fires. For fitted or portable heaters with a built in guard, give extra protection by adding a surrounding guard particularly if you have young children or older people in the home. For children, use a nursery guard with side clips that fit into fixed wall brackets
  • Keep portable heaters and candles away from furniture and curtains. Position safely where they cannot be knocked over
  • Don't dry or air clothes over or near the fire, or the cooker
  • Do not smoke in bed
  • Many fires start in the kitchen, especially fat fires. Never leave a pan unattended when deep fat frying and watch for overheating. For safer frying use oven chips or a thermostatically controlled deep fat fryer
  • If there are children around, keep matches and lighters well out of reach
  • Fit approved smoke detectors on each floor. Choose a smoke alarm that is mains operated or one with a long life (ten year) battery
  • Plan your escape route. Remember Get out, stay out and call the fire brigade out!

https://www.rospa.com/home-safety/advice/general/preventing-accidents-in-the-home/

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Wildfires?

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

Typically, the answer is yes. Standard homeowners policies generally help protect against specific perils, or certain causes of loss, such as theft and fire, but coverage may vary by geographic location and by policy. You may also find that some insurers do not sell homeowners policies in areas where wildfires are common.

You'll likely find that homeowners insurance offers several different types of protection if your home is damaged by wildfire.

Dwelling: This type of protection helps cover your home and attached structures, such as a garage or deck. If your home is damaged by fire (or another covered peril), dwelling coverage may help pay for repairs or rebuilding — up to the limits of your policy.

Personal property: Belongings — things like furniture, clothing and electronics — are usually covered in a standard homeowners policy. Keep in mind that limits will apply, so you may want to review your policy and determine whether your personal property coverage limits are sufficient. Your local agent can help you make any changes or answer your questions.

Additional living expenses: Homeowners insurance may help cover the cost of reasonable increased living expenses, such as renting a home while your home is being repaired, if a fire leaves it uninhabitable. Check your policy or contact your agent to learn about any terms and coverage limits.

Landscaping: Homeowners insurance may offer limited coverage for plants, shrubs, trees or lawns damaged by a covered peril, such as fire, according to the American Institute of CPAs. Check your policy to learn what kind of protection it may offer for landscaping on your land.

 

What happens after a Fire?

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

House Fire House Fire

Here are some major or minor fire recovery tips for houses and apartments.

A special thank you to the firemen, policemen, industry professionals, lawyers, insurance agents and people who gave us their time, insight and real-life advice.

  • Be safe, be smart.
  • Depending on the damage, the fire department may allow you to take your personal belongings (clothing, - jewelry, important documents). If you remove anything, you may have to fill out a form with the fire department listing each item. You will not be allowed to take certain items (i.e. couches, TVs, computers, appliances) as they may have caused the fire.
  • If your car is burned or very damaged by debris, do not start it or move it. Fire officials will tell you when you can move your car.
  • Ask an on-site fire official for a fire department contact in case of questions after the fire.
  • Ask for the approximate date and time for the initial walk-through of your property. For safety purposes, you MUST be escorted; this is especially true if there is structural damage.
    • If you are insured, you should call your agent about this walk-through. Have them contact SERVPRO of Denver West.

http://www.whathappensnow.com/getHelp.cfm?cat=2&sub=2

Where do most house fires come from?

1/5/2017 (Permalink)

kitchen pan of grease on fire Kitchen fires are nothing to joke about. Help yourself and your family members stay safe by following these simple steps.

Do you know what the number one cause of house fires is? If you guessed cooking incidents then you'd be correct. These incidents are usually brought on by leaving a pot or pan unattended while you run and do something for "just a minute." According to the NFPA, %40 of all fires, or on average 156,600 per year are started this way. There is a (57%) of a fire starting on a range compared to in the oven (16%) due to frying. 

Wandering if there's anything you can do to prevent becoming one of these 156,00 house fires a year? Well keep reading, SERVPRO of Denver West has your back.

-Make sure you are always alert and never leave your food unattended while it is cooking.

-Make sure you smoke detectors are working and you have a fire extinguisher close by.

-NEVER throw water on a grease fire, it will only spread it faster. Instead put a lid on the pan to smother the fire.

-If the fire starts in your oven, simply turn it off and keep the oven door closed until the fire is out.

-Always keep anything burnable like clothing or towels away from fires. 

Smoke and Soot Cleanup

9/14/2016 (Permalink)

Fireman putting out a large fire Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your Aurora 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 Denver 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 – (303) 576-6868