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How Do I Prepare My Company for a Fire?
Train your employees on how to safely evacuate from the building during an emergency.
Reducing the Impact and Harm Caused by a Fire
Fire can be a devastating event for any business, but it's far less catastrophic if you're prepared. Here's a checklist of steps you can take to:
Designate a person to be responsible for fire safety.
It's important to have a designated person in charge of fire safety. This can be a manager or someone else on staff, but they need to oversee making sure that all required safety measures are being followed and that the building is kept up to date with any new regulations that may be put into place.
The responsibilities for this person include:
- Making sure that all employees are aware of their role in keeping the building safe from fire hazards
- Ensuring that all workers know how to properly extinguish small fires using a fire extinguisher, sand, or other non-combustible materials (if possible)
- Inspecting the premises every month for any signs of fire hazards
Conduct a walk-through of your workplace to identify potential fire hazards.
Conduct a walk-through of your workplace to identify potential fire hazards. Identify where a fire could start and consider where it might spread in your workplace. Think about what would be damaged in a fire, and what steps you'd take if there was one.
If you have an office building, think about the following:
- Electrical outlets (especially near flammable materials like paper)
- Heating systems (like furnaces or vents), which can cause fires if they aren't working properly
- Chemical storage areas (such as cleaning supplies or deodorizers)
Train employees on their responsibilities in the event of a fire.
The first step in preparing your company for a fire is to train employees on their responsibilities in the event of a fire. To help you do this, it's important to first understand that it's not enough to simply tell your employees what they should do if there's a fire; they need to know what their role is and how they can successfully carry out that role. This can be hard if you're not sure exactly what the roles are or where employees might look for them! So, we've outlined some basic steps below:
- Train your employees on how to safely evacuate from the building during an emergency.
- Train them on which exit routes (exit doors) lead directly outside, so that in case of an emergency evacuation every employee knows which exit door they should always use.
- Show all your staff members where the nearest fire extinguisher is located, as well as how best time should be used when using one (e.g., don't waste too much time trying one extinguisher when another one might work better).
Develop an evacuation plan and practice it.
Develop an evacuation plan and practice it. Ideally, your company will have a contingency plan in the event of a fire or other disaster. If you don’t have one, develop one now. Your best bet is to keep it simple: get everyone together and discuss how to leave the building safely, where everyone is going after they evacuate (a local restaurant that has wireless internet), who will contact emergency services, who will call your insurance company. The more organized and accessible this information is—the easier it is for employees to reference during a crisis—the better off you are when something happens.
Know what to do in case of a fire with this checklist.
- Know your exit routes.
- Know where your safe location is.
- Know where your fire extinguishers are located.
- Know the location of your fire alarm and how to use it.
- Be familiar with using a fire extinguisher in case one breaks out before you can get out of the building safely.
- Be able to call 911 in case you need help evacuating from the building.
Hopefully, you’ll never have to use these tips. But if you do, it’s important to have a plan in place. You can prepare your company for a fire by designating a person responsible for fire safety, conducting regular walk-throughs of the workplace to identify potential fire hazards, training employees on their responsibilities in an emergency and developing an evacuation plan with practice drills.
How To Treat a Burn
Treating a skin burn in Dellwood, NC
How to Care for a Burn
If you experience a fire at your business in Dellwood, NC, it is important that you know what to do next. After first aid has been administered, you should call a fire cleanup and restoration service to repaid the fire damage.
Before administering any burn first aid, you will need to know the severity of the injury.
- Small area
- Large area
- Changes in skin texture
Treating Minor Burns
Minor burns will not require emergency care and can be treated with first aid. You will want to cool the area with cool running water or compresses until pain subsides. Next, you will want to remove anything restrictive, such as jewelry, from the area, in case the burn swells. After the area is cool and unobstructed, you may want to apply soothing creams and bandages to reduce pain and protect the injury.
Infections can be avoided by applying antibiotic ointments and leaving blisters in tact. If you notice any signs of infection, you may want to seek medical attention.
Treating Major Burns
If someone experiences a major burn, you should call for emergency assistance immediately. You will then want to remove the source of the burn, if possible, and check their vitals before attending to the injury. If the person is breathing and does not have more severe injuries that must be treated first, you should then remove anything restrictive in case the area swells. Gently cover the burn with a cool cloth to protect it and remove heat. The burn should not be submerged or placed under running water, as that could cause further injury. Try to elevate the injured body part and closely monitor the person until help arrives.
After injuries have been tended to, you should assess the building's fire damage. Photograph the damage and list everything that was lost to make filing an insurance claim easier. You may then call a restoration service to come repair the damage.
Knowing how to administer burn first aid and who to call for restoration assistance will help you minimize injuries and losses due to fire damage.
Protecting Your Business With Income Coverage
Restoring your property after a fire.
Why You Need Interruption Insurance
Responsible property owners carry property insurance. If you ever experience a fire in your building in Clyde, NC, your policy generally covers your expenses associated with repair, replacement, and reconstruction. With an insurance plan that covers physical damage to your property and its contents, you might think you’ve covered all your bases. How about the temporary loss of income? Here’s why you need interruption insurance as part of a comprehensive plan.
Understanding Business Interruption Coverage
Also known as business income insurance, this policy covers the loss of income you may experience following a fire or other disaster. This income loss may be due to the closing of your facility as a direct result of the fire or reconstruction during the fire restoration process. Interruption insurance is designed to cover the profits that you would’ve earned if you hadn’t incurred the loss that interrupted your business. A typical policy covers the following:
Profits: Usually based on previous monthly financial statements
Fixed costs: Operating expenses and costs that are still incurred
Temporary relocation: Covers costs of temporarily relocating to, and operating at another location
Commission and training: Costs associated with training workers to operate equipment replacements
Additional expenses: Other reasonable costs necessary for a business to continue operations during restoration
Civil authority ingress and egress: Government-mandated closures that result in loss of revenue, such as curfews
Your insurer determines the time period covered, usually from the date of disaster to the date that your property is restored to pre-disaster conditions.
Considering Your Options
Interruption insurance policies can be purchased either as standalone plans or part of a comprehensive package of a business owner’s policy. Some companies purchase a contingent policy that provides coverage if suppliers and customers experience damage that interferes with doing business. Think carefully about your specific needs as a commercial property owner.
Having a fire disaster plan is more than just property insurance and knowing which professional restoration services company to call. It’s also about having coverage that includes the loss of revenue or income after a disaster. This coverage protects your business, including customers, workers, and partners.
What To Do When Floodwater Gets in the Furnace
One area of damage that can be easily overlooked is a furnace flood.
When Floodwater Infiltrates the Furnace, What Should You Do?
When floodwater gets into the furnace of your Cherokee, NC, property, everything the water touched must be cleaned and restored, so you can avoid further damage. One area of damage that can be easily overlooked is a furnace flood. When the flooded furnace and any affected HVAC ducts aren't professionally restored, the secondary damage could be even more of a problem than the original flooding.
Act Quickly To Avoid Further Damage
There are several steps you should take as soon as you notice water, whether it's a furnace flood or a burst pipe:
Shut off the water to your building from the main stopcock. This prevents more water from spreading throughout your building. It also reduces the risk of water and electricity combining.
Turn off the electricity. Even if a small amount of water can cause serious electrical trouble.
Move items away from the water. You may have large pieces of furniture that you can safely move to a dry location. Don't move electrical appliances; leave these items to the professionals.
Remove as much water as possible. The longer the water sits, the more damage you could experience.
When water damage and cleanup professionals arrive, they will use powerful water extraction tools and chemical cleaners that have been developed specifically to protect your flooded furnace and other appliances from further harm.
Contact Professionals for Necessary Repairs
These professionals can also complete air duct cleaning, address soggy carpets, and repair other parts of your property. If the services of a plumber are required, the cleanup technicians or your insurance provider may suggest a reputable professional in your area.
A furnace flood can cause a lot of upset and inconvenience, but with quick action and the help of professionals, you won't have to wait long for a solution. As you have the furnace and ductwork cleaned and maintained, you'll breathe much more easily in the days to follow.
3 Reasons Why Mold Keep Growing In the Same Spot
A water leak can quickly progress into a full-blown mold infestation in your business.
Three Reasons Mold Continues to Grow in the Same Place
At your office in Maggie Valley, NC, you receive a maintenance request to address some mold growth under the sink in one of the staff bathrooms. Diligently, you shut off the water to inspect the pipes, tighten a few things, test for drips, and clean up the small moldy spot. A couple of weeks later, another request comes through about the same issue. Rinse and repeat a couple more times. Finally, you overhear some employees speculating that you've probably never dealt with the problem at all because the mold is still there. What gives? Here's why mold might be growing in the same place again and again.
1. You Still Have a Leak.
Likely the main reason that the mold keeps returning isn't your lack of attention to the problem. You still have a leak. Even if you can't see it right below the sink, there is likely a problem with a pipe inside of the wall. If that's the case, water damage and moisture are spreading which create ideal conditions for mold. Contact a local mold remediation specialist to help identify the source of the leak.
2. You Are Using the Wrong Products.
People commonly believe that you can kill mold with bleach or vinegar. The reality is that while it may solve the mold growth problem at the moment, it doesn't prevent its return. That can only be solved by addressing the source of the moisture that is encouraging mold to grow in the first place.
3. You Haven't Ventilated Well.
It's important to keep high humidity areas properly ventilated. Because mold spores love a moist, warm environment, running a dehumidifier or fan to dry the area out completely helps to prevent the return of mold once you've addressed any leaks.
Mold growth will continue to occur until you address the source of the problem and follow up with prevention tips that are recommended by a professional.
Disaster Preparation: Ensuring Your Business Survives
SERVPRO can respond quickly to any emergency. We have trained professionals who specialize in specific damages. Call us!
Preparing For Disasters: Ensuring That Your Business Survives.
Disaster preparedness and business preparedness go hand in hand. In fact, knowing how you will respond during a disaster is more critical than most business operations because a lack of an emergency plan may result in the end of your business. Therefore, to ensure that your business survives a potential disaster, make sure you are prepared.
1. Backup Critical Data
In the digital age, it is essential that a company backup all of their critical data. However, while backups on internal servers may sound like a decent plan, what happens if your facility burns to the ground? Data should be saved and stored off-site or even using secure cloud storage.
2. Contact Suppliers and Clients
One of the keys to disaster preparedness is making sure you have a list of all critical contacts. For businesses, this list should include the numbers and names of suppliers and contacts so that you can keep them abreast to your business’ disaster recovery.
3. Check Your Coverage
Do you currently know how well you are protected in the event of a disaster? Will your insurance policy cover fire, water and other property damage? If so, to what extent? Knowing the content of your insurance policy means that you will have a better understanding of your financial responsibilities should a disaster occur.
4. Create an Emergency Plan
While there are disaster restoration specialists in the Maggie Valley,NC, area who can help you develop an emergency response plan, the basis of such a plan is simple. You want to establish a list of emergency contacts who can help you mitigate and restore your commercial property. You should also seek out a company that can respond quickly to reduce the risk of other potential problems, like vagrants or mold growth.
Disaster preparedness can seem like a secondary concern for many business owners and managers. However, the truth is that when a disaster happens, you need to know how to manage the critical operations of your business even outside of having a facility.