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Personal Protective Equipment for Safe Mold Remediation

7/22/2021 (Permalink)

specialist in PPE combating mold Mold remediation in Portage Des Sioux, MO.

Mold Remediation Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Whether professionals are handling a mold outbreak in Portage Des Sioux, MO, or you hope to tackle the problem yourself, it is crucial that personal protective equipment is used. Cleaning up mold often involves the handling of potentially hazardous substances. Additionally, mold spores are microscopic and could become airborne or transported from one area to another during clean-up. The right equipment could prevent this and protect other areas of the property.

Items of personal protective equipment include:

  • Disposable hair covers
  • Safety goggles
  • Air-purifying respirator
  • Tyvek suits or clothing that can be immediately and appropriately laundered
  • Disposable gloves
  • Disposable shoe covers

Full Containment

While your property is in the process of remediation, containment is necessary to protect unaffected areas from new mold growth. There are several containment methods approved by the EPA, both full and limited. Full containment may occur when contamination of an entire building requires that layers of the wall are removed. Appropriate containment prevents the transfer of mold colonies into areas of the building that have already been treated.

Limited Containment

Limited containment could simply require a sheet of 6-mil fire-retardant polyethylene with a slit entry and flap. This sheeting may be held in place by duct tape. In many cases, containment also involves sealing off doors, pipe chases, and air vents to keep mold away from other areas of the property. Remediation experts have access to these materials and others used for containment.

Air Purification

Some air purifiers can be used to remove mold spores or at least remove odors that are caused by mold. If this method of controlling mold contamination is used to protect your Portage Des Sioux, MO, building, it's best to choose a filter that uses approved technology and is in compliance with established standards. Remember that these purifiers don't provide mold remediation; instead, they are a tool for prevention.

Top 5 Causes of House Fires

7/21/2021 (Permalink)

Burned room, walls covered with soot. The best way to protect your own safety and reduce fire damage at your home is to know the common causes of home fire and how to prevent them.

The Top 5 Reasons for House Fires

Every 86 seconds, fire departments across the United States respond to residential fires. As a homeowner in St. Peters, MO the prospect of a home fire is terrifying. Help prevent fires in your home by knowing the top five fire causes:

1. Cooking

Leaving cooking unattended is the leading fire cause in homes. The risk is increased with frying and attempting to extinguish the blaze without assistance from firefighters. Never leave your home with food cooking in the kitchen. If a fire starts, call 911 before attempting to put out the flames.

2. Smoking

The majority of house fires instigated by smoking involve bedding and upholstery. If you smoke, go outside if possible. Never smoke in bed or near flammable fabrics, especially when tired.

3. Heating

When heating is the reason for a home fire, it is commonly due to space heaters or wood stoves. Reduce your risk by turning off these devices when you are asleep or not at home. Furnace maintenance can help prevent fires due to central heating.

4. Electrical

Failures with electrical equipment or lighting cause 9-13% of residential fires. Check your cords, plugs, outlets and light fixtures for damage and repair or replace as needed.

5. Arson

There is little you can do to prevent a fire that is set intentionally. About half of this type of fire is set by children and adolescents.

The best way to protect your own safety and reduce fire damage at your home in St. Peters,MO is to know the common causes of home fire and how to prevent them. In addition to the above information, keep at least one functioning smoke detector at each level of your home. If possible, install a home sprinkler system. Have and practice an escape plan with your family in case of a fire. After a fire, contact your insurance agent and a fire restoration specialist to begin the process of smoke and fire cleaning.

How To Identify Category 3 Water Damage

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

stair of a House fully flooded during the flooding of the river Flooding caused by rain in O' Fallon, MO

Learn How To Identify Black Water and Clean Up This Type of Damage

 Category 3 water is highly contaminated. Insurance companies and restoration experts use this categorization to describe water that may contain chemicals, pathogens, and solid waste. This category of water calls for sewage cleanup.  Identify the Source

The third category of water damage differs from the first two categories in terms of its origin. Category 1 water is clean, treated, and comes from a supply pipe. Category 2 water is contaminated, but does not contain solid waste. Category 3 water is a result of:

  • Flooding caused by rain or rising bodies of water
  • Sewer backups
  • Water left standing for long periods of time

If water in a residence comes from any of these sources, it is very likely contaminated. Cleanup methods will depend on the amount of solids present.

Determine the Consistency

The fastest way to eliminate standing water is to use a pump. Some pumps can extract solid waste in addition to water. Homeowners will probably need to rent a pump or hire a water damage cleanup company. Solids in this category of water may include:

  • Mud
  • Sediment
  • Sewage

It is necessary to remove all standing water and solids. Homeowners or cleanup professionals should wear personal protective equipment when dealing with contaminated water.

Clean and Disinfect

In addition to cleaning, it is also necessary to disinfect areas exposed to black water. Mitigation professionals often perform several phases of cleanup, including:

  • A disinfecting pre-treatment
  • Tearing out
  • Cleaning
  • Disinfecting

Carpet and drywall should be torn out and replaced, as it is difficult to completely disinfect porous materials. Professionals can recommend the best approach to clean and restoration.

Homeowners should hire a sewage cleanup company to remove black water from a residence in O'Fallon, MO. Quickly completing the mitigation process may limit primary damage and reduce the risk of mold.

Preparing Your Business for a Flood

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

Business Continuity Plan Concept Have a continuity plan

The Following Steps Can Help You During an Emergency

You never want to deal with a flood in the workplace, but it's something you should be ready for just in case. Making a plan now can spare you and your business a great deal of grief and heartache in the future. There are effective methods of both reducing the risk of flooding and of keeping your company going if water does make its way into the building.

Prevention

If your office is located in an area of Weldon Spring, MO, where floods are more common, you should take steps to minimize flood damage. You can't stop heavy rains from coming down and overflowing nearby waterways. However, you can do some of the following:

  • Make sure all pipes are free of cracks and leaks.
  • Make sure rain gutters and downspouts send water away from the building.
  • Install backflow valves in the sewage system.

What To Do About Data

Your business has sensitive information on servers, external drives, and computers. Flooding can cause irreversible damage to electronics. If you have not backed up financial data, important files, personnel records, databases, and other critical information, now is the time to do so. Use cloud-based sites to store all your digital information. For paper records, scan in files and secure them on online storage sites.

Have a Continuity Plan

If flood issues such as black water make it difficult or impossible to conduct business from your building, you need to have something in place where you can continue running your operations. Ceasing your business until professional cleanup crews make your building safe could cost your customers and production. Make it possible for people to work remotely during the restoration process. Have a satellite office where you can manage the affairs of the company.
Implement these strategies today so if flooding does occur in your building, you'll know how to act. These steps can help you during an emergency.

4 Ways To Keep Your Pet Safe During and After a Home Fire

7/6/2021 (Permalink)

Map of a house and escape routes Remember to include your pet in your evacuation plan.

Four Ways to Protect Your Pet During a Fire Emergency

No homeowner wants to go through a home fire. While you can likely replace or repair damaged belongings, you can’t bring pets back to life. 

1. Develop a Pet-Evacuation Plan

Like most pet owners, you consider your cats and dogs to be part of the family. As such, you need to include your pets in your evacuation plan. First, find out where your pets prefer to hide. Often, pets seek refuge in these places during emergency situations. Also, if you can do so safely, try to carry pets with you when you evacuate. Don’t forget to collar and leash them, though, as you may be away from the safety of indoor space for hours.

2. Keep Pet Records in an Accessible Place

Fires can be unbelievably destructive. While you may primarily worry about vital and financial documents, you can’t forget about pet records. When you are planning for a fire emergency, store veterinary and other information in a fire-safe box. Then, locate the box in a place where you or a fire-restoration specialist can easily find it.

3. Locate a Safe Spot

As you may know, not all emergency shelters welcome pets. Therefore, your pet preparation must identify a safe spot where your furry friends can stay temporarily after a fire. If your strategy includes staying with family members or friends, confirm that no one has pet allergies.

4. Prevent Pets From Starting Fires

Pets are often responsible for starting fires in St. Peters, MO. While you must have a plan for keeping your pets safe during a fire, you can decrease your chances of having a home fire by keeping open flames away from wagging tails. Additionally, hide wires to discourage your pets from chewing through them.

Ensuring pet safety during a fire requires a bit of preparation. With some effort, though, you can be certain your pets will survive a fire emergency.

How To Keep Your Washing Machine Smelling Fresh and Clean

6/15/2021 (Permalink)

Low angle view of baking soda with vinegar, natural mix for effective house cleaning The mixture of baking soda and vinegar should eliminate the smell from your machine.

How To Keep Your Washing Machine Smelling Fresh and Clean

Have you ever unloaded your washing machine, only to be overwhelmed by a moldy, mildewy odor originating from your appliance? If so, you are not alone. Front-loading washers, while water-efficient and highly effective, are perfect breeding grounds for mold and mildew. This problem is related to the fact that the drum fills only halfway with water, typically not enough to rinse away the remaining detergent. Therefore, the residual soap scum traps dirt and lint under the gasket, producing an unpleasant and offensive odor. If you're looking for ways to keep your front-loader clean and smelling fresh, read on to learn some handy and helpful tricks.

Eliminate the Smell
While bleach is a powerful agent that can potentially disinfect your washer, natural, healthier solutions exist as well. To ban a mold smell in your front-loader, gather a few household items:

  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Nylon brush

In St. Charles, MO, place one-fourth cup of baking soda and an equal amount of water in your washer's detergent container. Add two cups of white vinegar to the drum, and run an empty washer on a high-heat cycle. The mixture of these two ingredients should eliminate any foul smells coming from your machine.
If pesky spots remain following the cleaning cycle, attack them with a nylon brush and an extra squirt of vinegar. In extreme cases, professional mold remediation specialists can assist in stubborn mold and mildew removals.

Maintain Freshness
Once your front-loader is clean, make sure to maintain its freshness so that it can efficiently and dutifully clean your dirty laundry in the future.
First, make sure to use appropriate laundry detergent for your high-efficiency washing machine. If you attempt to use conventional detergent, it will produce too many suds, resulting in a stinky washer. Further, liquid detergent is a no-no for high-efficiency washers, so ditch it in favor of dryer sheets or fabric softener balls.
Finally, thoroughly dry the drum following each cleaning cycle. With no moisture or humidity present, mold and mildew will have nowhere to breed and multiply.
Keep your washing machine clean and mildew-free by following these helpful tips, and enjoy fresh-smelling laundry for years to come.

4 Things You Should Know About Cleaning Smoke Damage

5/24/2021 (Permalink)

Furniture of a home burned, walls covered with smoke Fire and smoke damage in a St. Peters, MO home.

Four Things To Keep In Mind After A Fire Strikes

A home fire is one of the most common troubles to befall homeowners and renters. The extent of the fire determines the plan for recovery and restoration. Even a small fire, though, often results in a significant amount of damage to the home and to your belongings. The good news is that a qualified fire mitigation team has the resources to help no matter the situation. The technicians might recommend dry-cleaning of some items, particularly clothes, to get out smoke odors. Here are four things to keep in mind after a fire strikes your home in St. Peters, MO.

1. Content Cleaning Is Important. Many of your belongings will get damaged in a fire. This includes clothes, paintings, furniture, and even computers. A professional company has the equipment and skills needed to restore many items to good shape again, thus saving you money. In general, the technicians will use dry-cleaning for clothes and ultrasonic methods for non-porous items such as televisions and wooden desks and bookcases.

2. Content Storage May Be Needed. If the fire damage to your home is extensive, it is possible items will need to be moved to another area for protection. An orderly move-out and move-in process protect your valuable belongings from additional damage.

3. An Odor Control Technician Will Be Used. Smoke damage is often pervasive and persistent. To get your home clean, a highly-trained technician will use state-of-the-art equipment to remove smoke odors from walls, furniture, and belongings.

4. The Process Is Complex. A number of methods may be employed to get your home back in order again after a fire. The following cleaning methods are available from a professional team: dry-cleaning, immersive cleaning, foam cleaning, abrasive cleaning and spray and wipe options. All of these options allow for a better cleaning of your items as well as the option to restore many items instead of throwing them away.

What To Put in Your Commercial Building's First Aid Kit

5/18/2021 (Permalink)

Kit supplies First aid kit supplies.

Items You Should Purchase For Your Kit

Every commercial building owner needs a first aid kit. In fact, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires businesses to keep one of these kits on the premises at all times. The items in the kit can be used to treat a variety of injuries, such as:

  • Cuts
  • Sprains
  • Scrapes
  • Burns

While these types of ailments can occur at any time, they are particularly common during storms and other emergencies. Making sure your kit is fully stocked is thus a key part of disaster preparation. Below are some important items you should purchase for your kit.

Basic Essentials
No matter what type of business you own, OSHA-compliant kits must include a box of Band-Aids, a splint, latex gloves, a pair of tweezers, scissors, adhesive tape, disinfecting pads and two triangular bandages.
OSHA also requires other items that may not immediately come to mind. For instance, you need to put a blanket in your first aid kit. This could keep a hypothermic employee warm during a winter storm before first responders and emergency restoration professionals arrive at the scene.
In addition, you may not know that the gauze in your emergency kit needs to be a certain size. To meet OSHA regulations, the tape must be at least 2 inches wide, and the pads must include 4-by-4 inch and 8-by-10 inch varieties.

Business-Specific Items
You may also want to put items in your kit that your specific business could need. For instance, if you own a childcare center, you can pack kid-friendly bandages and adhesive tape for dressing infant cuts.
Meanwhile, if an earthquake or windstorm hits a restaurant, hot food could go flying and cause severe burns. If you own an establishment that serves food, you should thus keep plenty of burn dressings in your kit.
A storm can cause lots of damage to your Portage Des Sioux, MO, property. The shattered glass and broken desks could injure your employees, as well. With a full first aid kit, you can provide immediate medical assistance to hurt workers until help arrives.

How To Clean Electronics After Smoke Damage

5/6/2021 (Permalink)

empty room burned, walls damaged by fire Smoke damage in Weldon Spring, MO.

When you have an electrical fire at your business, you might think that cleaning up burned items is the end of it. Unfortunately, this is not true. Smoke can be worse than fire when it comes to your electronics.

Types of Smoke Damage

There are three basic types of smoke damage. These are:

Soot - This acidic substance coats the outside and inside of most electronics. It can shorten the life of your wiring considerably.
Magnetics - Smoke carries a mild electrical charge. This charge can short any electronics that are on during the fire.
Film - Smoke leaves behind a black film on everything that it gets near. This can cause your electronics to overheat if you turn them on before cleaning them.

Each of these types can cost you thousands of dollars if you do not properly clean your electronics after a fire, even if they look undamaged at first.

When To Call In Professionals
Cleaning electronics often requires taking them apart and cleaning individual wires and components. If you are not comfortable doing this, call in a professional cleanup company in Weldon Spring, MO. They might even perform this service as part of an overall electrical fire cleaning.

What You Can Do
Although it is not recommended that you clean major appliances, television sets or electrical panels, there are some things that you can do to make it easier for the professionals. The first thing you do unplug everything. This will allow any residual charge inside the item to dissipate. Small items can be taken apart and wiped down but larger more expensive items require a bit more.
For computer cleanup, take off the case and inspect the inside. If you are comfortable, remove the hard drive and take the data off it by hooking it to an undamaged system. If you are not, a computer expert can help you with this. Be sure to tell them the computer was damaged in a fire.
An electrical fire, like any fire, can be dealt with. All you need to do is make sure that your electronics are properly cleaned and serviced to get them back in working order.

How to Develop a Business Continuity Plan After a Storm

4/7/2021 (Permalink)

office flooded, desk, computer, files, documents floating on floodwaters Flooded office in O'Fallon, MO.

Prepare Your Business For A Storm

Storms and flooding can strike very suddenly in O'Fallon, MO. While some predictions can be made about widescale storms, others come without warning, and the results can be a disaster for a community – and spell bankruptcy for a business.
Fortunately, you can act proactively and prepare for problems. There are three critical steps to build resiliency in your business:

  • Get a commercial insurance policy.
  • Develop a continuity plan.
  • Keep key personnel informed.

Know Your Insurance Coverage – and Its Exemptions
Insurance policies can be confusing. Make sure you ask your agent about what is and isn’t covered. If you want flood coverage, you’ll need a separate flood policy https://www.fema.gov/flood-insurance .

Establish a Business Continuity Plan
The U.S. Government maintains a website to help citizens and businesses prepare for disasters. They have a detailed description of how to develop your plan, beginning with the business impact analysis.
This starts with a risk assessment to determine what’s high risk for your location and type of business. Are you in a high-risk flood zone? Do you rely on digital information or is everything local? Which natural disasters are most likely?

Which Disaster Is Most Likely – or Most Harmful?
Aim for the most probable disasters based on your BIA. For disasters unlikely in O'Fallon, MO, it may not be worth detailed planning, but general disaster planning can have wide-reaching benefits, even in unforeseen situations.

Key Personnel Should Be in the Loop
The key to resiliency after getting storm damage is to get reopened as soon as possible. Most small businesses will fail within two years if they’ve been closed for more than a couple of days after a disaster. Immediately after the storm, every essential person should be contacted and information shared.
You need to discuss what resources you need to reopen as fast as possible after the storm passes. Calling a commercial restoration specialist immediately after a storm can also be the difference between surviving the disaster and never reopening. Speed is essential, so your restoration company will work with you to get reopened as soon as possible.
With an established continuity plan and good insurance, you can survive the storm and get back to business quickly. Every day you’re closed increases your risk of staying that way.