Recent Fire Damage Posts
Kitchen Fire Safety
The kitchen is one of the more dangerous rooms in both residential and commercial properties. The difference though is that commercial kitchens give special training to the people who will be working within them. Residential kitchens are left in the hands of both adults and children, raising the risk for injuries and other accidents.
The following is a set of tips provided by the NFPA to help lower the chances of accidents that will cause fires or severe burns.
- Be alert. Do not attempt to cook if you are tired or under the influence of medicine, drugs, or alcohol.
- Keep anything flammable away from the stovetop. Keep the stovetop, oven, and burners clean of grease, oils, and other contaminants that might catch fire.
- Stay in the kitchen when cooking. If you must leave the kitchen for any reason, turn off the stove. Check what you’re cooking regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you of how long the task will take.
- Make sure there is at least one oven mitt in the kitchen to prevent burns from pots and pans.
- If an oven catches fire, turn off the heat and keep the door. Leaving the door open could allow flames to burn you or catch your clothing on fire. The oven should be checked and/or serviced before being used again. It should be replaced if it can’t be fully fixed.
- Plug microwaves directly into an outlet. Using an extension cord can overload the circuit and cause a fire.
- If your microwave or something in it catches fire, turn it off and keep the door closed until the fire is completely out. Don’t use it again until it is serviced. If needed, replace it.
- Keep pot handles away from the stove’s edge and burners. Use the back burners whenever possible.
- Wear short, close-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves to avoid catching your clothes on fire. However, if they do catch fire just remember to stop, drop, and roll!
- To avoid burns from steam, open food that you’ve heated in the microwave slowly and away from your face.
- Always remember the “three-feet” rule. Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the cooking area (in all directions). This will prevent burns from spilled food or contact with the stove.
- When in doubt, just get out. For fires you’re not sure if you can handle, leave the house and call the fire department.
- Treat burns as soon as possible. Put it in cool water and continue to cool the burn for three to five minutes. When cooled, cover with a clean, dry cloth to prevent infection. For burns bigger than your fist or for any burn that you’re not sure you can care for, go to the emergency room.
There are plenty of fire and burn risks in the kitchen. However, there are even more things that you can do to prevent those risks from becoming very real problems.
Information received from:
If you do experience a kitchen fire, you can contact SERVPRO® of Peoria for the cleanup and restoration of your residential or commercial property. 309-637-7300
Smoke Alarm Installation
Fire alarms are a necessity for all buildings, especially homes. As we all know, these small devices can help identify a fire in time to save a building and the content in it. Smoke alarms are also the difference between waking up at night and escaping a house fire or being trapped by engulfing flames. However, just having smoke alarms in the house is not enough. They need to be installed properly, in the correct places and tested. The National Fire Protection Association put together a list of information to assure that you do things right the first time around.
- Choose smoke alarms approved by recognized testing labs.
- It’s important to place smoke alarms
- Inside each bedroom and at least one outside the bedrooms
- Each level of the home, including the attic and basement.
- In the living room, den, or family room
- Near the stairway to upper levels (Basement alarms should be installed on the ceiling at the bottom of the stairs.)
- Place smoke alarms at least 10 feet (3 meters) from cooking appliances to minimize false alarms when cooking.
- Because smoke rises, smoke alarms should be mounted in higher spots, like walls or ceilings, but never more than 12 inches away from the ceiling.
- If you have ceilings that are pitched, install the alarm within 3 feet of the peak but not within the apex of the peak (four inches down from the peak).
- To avoid a breeze or a draft throwing off the accuracy, don't install smoke alarms near windows, doors, vents, or any other ducts.
- Paint, stickers, or other decorations could interfere with the functionality of an alarm.
- Interconnecting all smoke alarms through hard-wiring or wireless technology (so when one smoke alarm sounds they all sound) is the most effective way to set them up. This means if the basement alarm sounds in the middle of the night, then the one in your bedroom will sound as well, waking you and alerting you to the smoke/fire.
- There are two types of smoke alarms – ionization smoke alarms (responsive to flaming fires) and photoelectric smoke alarms (responsive to smoldering fires). A combination of ionization-photoelectric alarms (dual sensor smoke alarms) is recommended for the best protection.
- Keep manufacturer’s instructions for reference.
- It is always worth it to test the alarms once a month and maintain them in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Make sure everyone in the home understands the sound of the smoke alarm and knows how to respond.
- Keep smoke alarms clean and working. The instructions are included in the package or can be found on the internet.
- If alarms with 10-year batteries chirp, warning that the battery is low, replace the entire smoke alarm right away. Smoke alarms with any other type of battery will also chirps, warning the battery is low, and you should replace the battery right away. It should be replaced at least once a year either way.
However, you should continue to follow the manufacturer’s instructions, which are specific to the batteries (brand and model) that must be used.
Whatever the case may be, you should never be caught without smoke alarms in your home (or business). Safety should always come first, and smoke alarms are one of the best tools for fire safety.
Information retrieved from https://www.nfpa.org/Public-Education/By-topic/Smoke-alarms/Installing-and-maintaining-smoke-alarms
If smoke alarms go off in your home or business and alert you to fire damages, be sure to contact SERVPRO® of Peoria for the cleaning and restoration of your property. 309-637-7300
Home Fire Statistics
In life, especially during your youth, there are many different reasons you might hear the phrase, “Don’t become a statistic.” Often, that advice is trying to deter you from getting in trouble; warning against drinking, drugs, or other illicit activities. In life there are other dangers for which everyone should avoid becoming a statistic - one of the scariest being fires.
The following is a list of various home fire statistics (published in 2017) for you to consider.
- Between 2011-2015, U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 358,500 home structure fires with an annual average of
- 2,510 civilian fire deaths
- 12,300 civilian fire injuries
- $6.7 billion in direct damage
- The leading causes of home structure fires are
- Electrical distribution and lighting equipment
- Heating equipment
- Cooking equipment
- Smoking materials
- The leading origins of these fires are
- Kitchen or cooking area
- Confined chimney or flue fire
- Living room, family room or den
- People between the ages of 25-64 have a greater risk of death or injury in a house structure fire
- 93% of structure fire deaths and 80% of all fire deaths are due to home structure fires.
- Property use plays a factor in the amount of fires that occur as well. For example
- One- or two-family home, (including manufactured home) amount to 249,500 - or 70% - of home structure fires
- Apartment or other multifamily housing amount to 109,000 - the other 30% - of home structure fires.
- In America, an average of seven people die in fires per day.
- Home fire deaths peak in the cooler months.
This list is a highly condensed version of the lists out there, provided by groups like the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), to keep you and those you love aware of the causes and effects of house fires. The most important thing to take away from the information included here is that no matter your age, the size of your household, etc. your home is at risk. Take precautions, make a plan, and trust your local rescue teams.
Don’t become a statistic.
Information retrieved from: https://www.nfpa.org/-/media/Files/News-and-Research/Fire-statistics-and-reports/Building-and-life-safety/osHomes.ashx
If you do experience damages from a house fire, please don’t hesitate SERVPRO® of Peoria for the cleaning and restoration of your property. 309-637-7300
Super Bowl Fire Safety
Game day is approaching! The Patriots and the Rams are going to be fighting for victory in the 2019 Super Bowl and fans will be cheering them on from the stands and in front of their televisions. As fans root for their respective teams, they’ll be cooking and partying as well. Whenever big events are mixed with cooking and other excitement, it is important to keep fire safety in mind; because fires in small company are disastrous, but fires involving large groups of people are all out chaos. There are some simple things you can remember on game day to keep you and your guests safe.
First thing to remember is that, while not the only cause, the most common source of fires during Super Bowl Sunday is cooking fires. To prevent those types of fires, your cooking area needs to stay organized. Oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels, curtains, and anything else that is flammable should be kept away from stovetops and from any other heat sources (toasters, grills, etc.). As we have mentioned in other postings about fire safety, you should also have a kid free zone of three feet surrounding the cooking area. This will help avoid accidental burns, fires, or injuries from knives or appliances. While the kitchen should be a kid free zone, there should always be a person in the kitchen monitoring the food being cooked and whatever appliance is cooking it. Use timers to keep track of how long things should be cooked, especially if hosting duties pull you from the kitchen. Stay awake and stay alert. If things are left unattended for too long, it could mean big trouble and an early end to the party.
Because of the winter season, it is likely that extra heat sources will be added to the party. If you are planning to use a space heater or a fireplace to warm your home or garage during the game festivities, it is important to take the proper safety precautions. We have posted information on both Fireplace and Portable Space Heater safety. If you would like an in depth list of safety measures to take you can go read those blogs. However, for both it is important to remember:
- Keep pets, kids, people, and flammable objects at least three feet away from them at all times.
- Avoid knocking over space heaters - and if they do fall, pick them up as soon as possible.
- Always keep a safety screen in front of fireplaces to prevent stray coals or flames from setting your house or garage on fire.
Finally, make sure that you have a designated area for people who smoke. If you don’t allow smoking in your home, this could be a spot outdoors, in a shed, or in a garage. This spot should have a safe way for smokers to dispose of their cigarette butts and some precaution to take care of any fire that could be started by a cigarette (water, fire extinguisher, etc).
The most important part of game day isn’t who wins or loses, it’s the time you spend with your friends and family. That being said, it’s in your best interest to do everything you can to keep the party fun and as fire free as possible.
Information received from:
If a fire causes issues for you during the 2019 Super Bowl, reach out to SERVPRO® of Peoria for the cleaning and restoration of your property. 309-637-7300
Home Fire Escape Plans
The last thing you want to happen is to be coming up with a fire escape plan when a fire is already taking place. Home owners should always have a plan in place to get their loved ones out of the building quickly and safely. There are multiple things that should be kept in mind while developing these plans. The National Fire Protection Association has laid out a list of things to do to accomplish this. This list includes tips such as:
- Make a plan with everyone in your household. Walk through your home and inspect all possible exits and escape routes and identify the locations of smoke alarms. Draw a floor plan of the home for children showing at least two ways out of each room (windows and doors).
- Closed doors can slow fires and the accompanying identifiers. Smoke alarms should be in or outside of every bedroom and on every level of a home.
- Make sure all identified escape routes are clear and that doors and windows can be opened quickly and easily.
- Pick a place outside that is a safe distance in front of your home where everyone can meet after they've escaped. Make note of this spot on the escape plan.
- Make sure your address is visible from the street for first responders to see.
- Make sure everyone knows the emergency phone number of the fire department so anyone in your home can call in the emergency.
- Make sure that one or more people is capable of and assigned to the task of helping infants or elderly family members out of the home.
- Make sure that security bars have emergency release devices inside for a quick escape. They will still keep your house secure, but in case of an emergency, they will be less likely to catch or stick.
- Make sure that your guests know your escape plan and that when you are a guest you know your host’s escape plan.
- Whenever a smoke alarm sounds be prepared for it to be a real fire.
- Never go back into the building. If you have a family member or pet missing from your outside meeting place, alert the first responders of this when they arrive. If you go back in you risk getting stuck inside yourself, so let the professionals do the rescuing.
In the event of a fire, being prepared is key. By making a plan and practicing what to do before the situation occurs, you and the people you love are much more likely to make it out with little to no injuries.
If you experience fire damages, be sure to contact SERVPRO® of Peoria at 309-637-7300. We are here to make the damage, “Like it never even happened.”
Holiday Fireplace Safety
“Chestnuts roasting on an open fire!”
It’s the holiday season, and nothing compares to relaxing in front of a fireplace with a cup of cocoa and a Christmas movie playing in the background. That’s why it’s important to keep yourself and your family safe by practicing fire safety.
To do this it is crucial to remember that for fireplaces and woodstoves you should always:
- Inspect and clean wood stove pipes and chimneys annually and check monthly for damage or obstructions.
- Use a fireplace screen heavy enough to stop rolling logs and big enough to cover the entire opening of the fireplace to catch flying sparks.
- Make sure the fire is completely out before leaving the house or going to bed.
There are precautions you can take for portable space heaters as well, including:
- Keep combustible objects at least three feet away from portable heating devices.
- Buy only heaters evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL).
- Check to make the portable heater has a thermostat control mechanism, and will switch off automatically if the heater falls over.
- Only use crystal clear K-1 kerosene in kerosene heaters. Never overfill it. Use the heater in a well-ventilated room.
These simple actions can help keep this Christmas merry and bright. Let’s leave the roasting to the chestnuts!
SERVPRO of Peoria wishes everyone a safe and happy holiday.
(Tips received from: https://www.ready.gov/home-fires)
If you do experience fire damage in the Peoria area this Christmas call SERVPRO as soon as possible! (309) 637-7300
Fire Damaged Carpet Restoration In Peoria
Let the pros help you!
Do you know how to decide if you should remove or replace your fire damaged carpet?
We are going to assume two things in this post:
- You have a fire damaged carpet in Peoria, IL.
- You made a smart move and called SERVPRO to help you in your time of need.
When making the decision of whether or not to remove the carpet or replace it you have to factor in a few different things, SERVPRO has professional technicians who have been trained by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) can do the job properly and with the best results.
This training will be the outlining factor of whether the carpet is too far gone to keep or if the damage is minimal and a good cleaning and restoration can be performed.
If your carpet is damaged from a fire and you need a professional to come to make the decision of whether to remove or replace the carpet, give SERVPRO a call today.
Thanksgiving Safety In Peoria
Think about potential hazards first!
Thanksgiving's one of the peak days for house fires and injuries related to cooking in America!
Let's talk about some safety tips that you and your family can practice to make sure you can continue to be thankful for a roof over your head.
- Keep an eye on the turkey and all of the food, stay close while it is cooking.
- Keep young children away from the stove. The stove will be hot and kids should really stay as far away as possible.
- Keep the floor clear so you don’t trip over items that can cause you to spill hot liquids.
- Keep all sharp objects out of the reach of children.
- Never leave children alone in the room with a lit candle or unattended fire.
- Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button. Just a reminder most modern smoke detectors are good for about a decade, after that, it is better to just replace the whole unit, not just the batteries.
If you follow these tips and use common sense you should have a grateful and safe holiday season.
If you do experience a fire damage in the Peoria area this Thanksgiving call SERVPRO as soon as possible! (309) 637-7300
Summer Safety Tips In Peoria
Keep Summer Safe!
Peoria Summers are filled with barbecues, parades and fireworks displays; but along with all the festivities are plenty of visits to emergency rooms.
Consider the following tips to ensure your summer celebrations are disaster-free!
- Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
- The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
- Keep children and pets away from the grill area.
- Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
- Never leave your grill unattended.
- When using a charcoal grill, let the coals completely cool before disposing of in a metal container.
- Anyone using fireworks or standing nearby should wear protective eyewear.
- Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks. Keep a bucket of water nearby to fully extinguish fireworks that don't go off or in case of fire.
- The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to attend a public display conducted by trained professionals.
If a tragedy does strike your home in the form of fire damage, call SERVPRO right away (309) 637-7300!
Restoration Services In Peoria
Let SERVPRO Restore Your Building!
No Job Is Too Large For SERVPRO of Peoria!
There's never a good time for fire or water damage to strike your building or business. Every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and or time spent doing business operational duties. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we'll be there quickly with the help you need and the name you trust.
The SERVPRO Commercial Large Loss Division is made up of our best of the best in restoration.
Our industry-leading large-loss specialists are pre-qualified and strategically positioned throughout the country to handle any size disaster. Every large loss is over seen by a commercial operations manager to help ensure seamless communication and timely mitigation.
If your business suffers a major loss, call (309) 637-7300.
Fire Clean Up In Peoria
During A Fire, Stay Low For As Long As You Can!
Get low and crawl under the smoke to get out safely!
We asked the local Fire Department for some fire safety tips and ways to prevent extra harm from fires. The tip about getting low and crawling out of a home or building seems a little bit drastic or unnecessary until you start breathing in the smoke.
So many of the victims that deadly fires have consumed have passed out from breathing too much smoke, getting low gives someone a fighting chance to exit the building because smoke and heat rises.
So please if you are caught in a fire and you can make your way out, make sure you stay low and yes even crawl. It could be the difference between your life and your death.
You get out, we'll clean up!
If you have had fire damage in the Peoria area that needs to be cleaned up call SERVPRO to help put your life back together.
How Do You Get A Smoke Smell Out of Your Peoria Home
When the smoke smell is bad you better just call SERVPRO!
It happens to the best of us right. In the kitchen cooking your favorite dish, someone knocks on the door or the phone rings so you go answer it. You walk back in the room and your stove is on fire! Smoke rolls through the house, the alarm is blaring but luckily you're a quick thinker. You reach for the fire extinguisher and put it out before there is too much damage.
This week on our SERVPRO blog feed I am going to provide you with some quick tips on how to get the smell of smoke out of your house.
Things You'll Need
· Baking Soda
· Vinegar and Water Solution
· Heavy duty washing detergent
1. Throw open the windows and even a door or two as quickly as possible after the fire.
2. Launder your drapes and table linens as soon as possible; they will absorb the smoke odor rapidly.
3. Clean your cabinets, walls, and floors with a one-part vinegar, one part warm water solution.
4. Place bowls of baking soda around your kitchen, and even put a few in the cabinets, pantry, and any other room that has an odor.
If the house still reeks of smoke or if you don’t want to mess with it in the first place, just call us here at SERVPRO and we’ll get it right out.
Burn Awareness Month Is February
Practice Burn Awareness!
We thought it was a good time to share some tips that could keep you and your family safe from getting burned.
Scalds are one of the leading causes of burns in children under the age of 9 in the United States.
- To prevent your children from being scalded by hot water make sure that you are checking the temperature of their bath water before placing them in the bathtub.
- To ensure that your water won't be too hot adjust your Hot Water Heater to no more than 120 degrees F so that the chance of having water hot enough to scald someone is drastically reduced.
- When cooking, make sure you turn your pot handles in over the counters so that they don't get knocked over by you or your kids by accident.
If you do get burned the best thing you can do first is to place the burned area under cool (not cold) water for a few minutes to lessen the severity of the burn.
If any scalds are from the result of a fire and the damage is too much for you to clean yourself, call SERVPRO (309) 637-7300
Be Safe While Keeping Warm This Winter
Be safe and Keep Warm
50% of all residential heating-related fires are reported during the months of December, January & February
Here are 7 quick tips to keep safe while you keep warm this winter:
- Keep anything flammable at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or a portable space heater. Have a three foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
- Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
- Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
- Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
- Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
- Have a qualified professional install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer’s instructions.
- Test smoke alarms monthly.
If you do have a fire damage this winter call SERVPRO of Peoria right away! (309) 637-7300
2016 Fire Demonstration & Educational Seminar
Pekin Fire Department and FireTech control the burns.
On September 29, 2016 we held our 3rd annual fire class for insurance professionals. We hold the class at our very own facility and we conduct live burns inside a house we own on our campus.
Each year we have the Pekin Fire Department control the burns. They are under the direction of FireTech Investigation & Consulting.
The day starts off with breakfast, then leads into some classroom discussion conducted by FireTech. Then the class is lead outside to watch some live burns inside the house. We set up these rooms to be very lifelike with furniture and appliances. The idea is for the insurance professionals to see what a small fire can affect. After a few burns are conducted inside the house we also set fire to a couple cars. We then provide the class with lunch and give them a chance to walk through the house and see the aftermath of the burns. The class will then finish with some classroom discussion.
Emergency Ready Profile
No one plans on a disaster, but you can plan to be "Ready for whatever happens." By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.
As many as 50% of businesses close down following a disaster, according to the latest research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind.
Our team would love to come do an ERP for your business free of charge!! Watch this video to learn more!