Summer Storms? Lightning Safety Tips
Lightning kills around 20 people in the United States each year. These lightning safety tips can keep you and your family safe.
Lightning: What You Need to Know
- NO PLACE outside is safe when thunderstorms are in the area!!
- If you hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike you.
- When you hear thunder, immediately move to safe shelter: a substantial building with electricity or plumbing or an enclosed, metal-topped vehicle with windows up.
- Stay in safe shelter at least 30 minutes after you hear the last sound of thunder.
Indoor Lightning Safety
- Stay off corded phones, computers and other electrical equipment that put you in direct contact with electricity.
- Avoid plumbing, including sinks, baths and faucets.
- Stay away from windows and doors, and stay off porches.
- Do not lie on concrete floors, and do not lean against concrete walls.
Last Resort Outdoor Risk Reduction Tips
If you are caught outside with no safe shelter anywhere nearby the following actions may reduce your risk:
- Immediately get off elevated areas such as hills, mountain ridges or peaks
- Never lie flat on the ground
- Never shelter under an isolated tree
- Never use a cliff or rocky overhang for shelter
- Immediately get out and away from ponds, lakes and other bodies of water
- Stay away from objects that conduct electricity (barbed wire fences, power lines, windmills, etc.)
SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge & SERVPRO of Woodbridge/Lorton are always here to help with all of your storm needs 24/7!!
More Lightning Safety Tips
Is Your Phone Set To Receive Emergency Flood Wireless Alerts?
TURN AROUND DON'T DROWN!!! Flooding roads can wash both you and your car away and crumble a road like picture above! Emergency Alerts can save you!
This could save your life!
Flooding can happen in a flash! Don't be caught off guard. If you have a smartphone, chances are it has a built-in feature to automatically receive and display WIRELESS EMERGENCY ALERTS from the National Weather Service when flash flooding and other hazards are happening nearby.
You will not be charged to receive these lifesaving alerts so make sure they are enabled, or turned on, on your smartphone and everyone in your family! They will let you know if imminent danger is near you!!
What's the Difference Between a Hurricane "Watch" and "Warning"?
Knowing the difference between a Hurricane Watch & a Hurricane Warning is important!
Know the difference between a hurricane “watch” and “warning.”
Listen for National Weather Service alerts on TV or radio or check for them online. There are two kinds of alerts:
- A hurricane watch means hurricane conditions (sustained winds of 74 miles per hour [mph] or higher) are possible in a stated area. Experts announce hurricane watches 48 hours before they expect tropical-storm-force winds (sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph) to start.
- A hurricane warning is more serious. It means hurricane-force winds are expected in a stated area. Experts issue these warnings 36 hours before tropical-storm-force winds are expected in the area to give people enough time to prepare for the storm.
For more information about hurricane watches and warnings, check out the National Weather Service’s Hurricane Centerexternal icon. If you hear that there is a hurricane watch or warning in your area, you need to take the proper steps to get ready.
SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge and the SERVPRO of Woodbridge/Lorton are always here to help!
Summer Storms Can Cause Rip Currents
Rip Currents can be life threatening. Learn the tips in this article to keep you and your family safe!
What Are Rip Currents?
* Rip currents are channelized currents of water flowing away from shore at surf beaches.
* Rip currents typically form at breaks in sandbars, and also near structures such as jetties and piers.
* Rip currents are commonly found on all surf beaches.
Why Are Rip Currents Dangerous?
* Rip currents pull people away from shore.
* Rip current speeds can vary from moment to moment and can quickly increase to become dangerous to anyone entering the surf.
* Rip currents can sweep even the strongest swimmer away from shore.
* A scientific review of data provided to the United States Lifesaving Association found that there are over 100 deaths each year in the U.S. attributed to rip currents.
* Rip currents account for over 80% of rescues performed by surf beach lifeguards.
What Are Clues That Rip Currents Are Present?
* A narrow gap of darker, seemingly calmer water between areas of breaking waves and whitewater.
* A channel of churning, choppy water.
* A difference in water color.
* A line of foam, seaweed or debris moving seaward.
How Can I Protect Myself From Rip Currents?
* Always swim in an area protected by lifeguards
* Consult lifeguards before entering the water.
* Assume that rip currents are always present at surf beaches.
* Learn to swim in the surf and make sure your children can swim in the surf. Pool swimming is not the same as swimming at a surf beach.
* Learn to identify rip currents and take the time to evaluate the water before you enter the water.
What If I'm Caught In a Rip Current?
* Relax, rip currents don't pull you under.
* Don’t swim against the current.
* You may be able to escape by swimming out of the current in a direction following the shoreline, or toward breaking waves, then at an angle toward the beach.
* You may be able to escape by floating or treading water if the current circulates back toward shore.
* If you feel you will be unable to reach shore, draw attention to yourself. If you need help, yell and wave for assistance.
How Do I Help Someone Else?
***Don't become a victim while trying to help someone else! Many people have died trying to help a friend in a rip current!
* Get help from a lifeguard.
* If a lifeguard is not present, call 9-1-1, then try to direct the victim to swim following the shoreline to escape.
* If possible, throw the rip current victim something that floats.
* Never enter the water without a flotation device.
Facts About Rip Currents
* Rip currents do not pull people under the water—they pull people away from shore.
* Rip current speeds vary. Average speeds are 1-2 feet per second, but they have been measured as fast as 8 feet per second—faster than an Olympic swimmer!
* Rip currents can be very narrow or more than 50 yards wide.
* Sometimes a rip current ends just beyond the line of breaking waves; however, others may continue to flow hundreds of yards offshore.
* Rip currents are sometimes mistakenly called undertow or riptides but these terms are not correct. Only the term rip currents is technically correct.
SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge & SERVPRO of Woodbridge/Lorton hope these tips help keep you and your family safe at the beach this summer!
Commercial Water Damage? Call us QUICK!!
When water damage hits your commercial building, call the experts at SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge to extract & dry your space quickly! 703-583-848
Finding commercial water damage in your business can be hard to swallow, and when it's significant damage to not only your building, or to your inventory, but to both, it can be particularly challenging to grapple with. Business operations can be difficult enough to manage under normal conditions without adding unforeseen problems and emergencies.
Business owners should know that we are experts in finding solutions to cleaning up and preventing commercial water damage in Dale City/Lake Ridge and SERVPRO of Woodbridge/Lorton as well as restoring buildings from top to bottom. Your inventory is important to you, and your business, so we also understand that special care must be taken to prevent any extra losses from occurring. Our experience and training can help prevent this from happening, and we will also work with you and communicate all processes while we restore your business and your inventory.
Water extraction, drying, monitoring, cleaning, and restorative work are our strengths. We work as a team, so that our work is completed as quickly, but also as thoroughly, as possible. We use science to ensure your property is dried to goal range. Communication with you during the entire process is highly important to us, and we will always keep you updated on any developments that may affect your business. We're here to answer your questions, so please don't ever hesitate to ask us when you need more information.
When completing work that commercial water damage requires, we often encounter problems that have remained hidden. Problems can include electrical hazards, a discovery of pest problems, mold or bacterial growths, and many other situations that we commonly find. These are often unknown to business owners when water damage has been a slowly but steadily developing problem in a building. Your safety and that of your employees and customers are important and restoring things to an acceptable condition are paramount. Defects in building materials, such as gaps in insulation (sometimes discovered when a wall is opened so that damaged paneling or drywall can be replaced) can be filled before installing the new wall, preventing heat loss.
We strive to make things like new, and better than before the damage happened. This is why communication is so important to the entire process. Start the process by calling us, the professionals at SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge. Our number is (703) 583-8484, and it's answered 24/7.
Water Damage Clean-Up Tips
Hot water tanks, toilet overflows, dishwasher leaks, pipe leaks, roof leaks, refrigerator line leaks are just a few of water leaks we can help with.
IF WATER DAMAGE OCCURS, TIPS FOR CLEAN-UP
Shut off the main water valve, if practical, and call a plumber to fix the leak. Call an IICRC Certified professional (SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge & SERVPRO of Woodgridge/Lorton are certified) immediately for mitigation services, as required by your insurance policy. IICRC Certified professionals have the knowledge, experience and equipment to locate water wherever it goes, remove the excess, and dry your structure to industry standards. The first goal is to prevent slip/fall hazards. If the burst pipe is overhead, drain ceiling cavities by punching “weep” holes. Revised_013019
Prevent mold growth by acting immediately. Although it takes a few days to appear, mold thrives on wood, paper, particle board or even household soil, when stagnant air, moisture, and temperatures between 68°F and 86°F degrees are present. Wet clothing usually is salvageable. A 10-minute wash cycle in detergent and hot water should sanitize washable clothing and many household fabrics.
Make sure to dry out before you rebuild. IICRC Certified professionals have a variety of instruments to determine when a building is dry, to prevent on-going microbial growth. Drying should not stop until wood or drywall moisture content (MC) falls below 16% MC. Normal MC is around 10% in most areas of the country. Revised_013019 An IICRC Certified Firm like SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge & SERVPRO of Woodbridge/Lorton can help you through this process.
PREPARE for Hurricanes
SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge & SERVPRO of Woodbridge/Lorton are always here to help with all of your storm clean-up needs. 703-583-8484
Prepare for Hurricanes
Know Your Hurricane Risk
Hurricanes are not just a coastal problem. Find out how rain, wind, water and even tornadoes could happen far inland from where a hurricane or tropical storm makes landfall. Start preparing now.
Make an Emergency Plan
Make sure everyone in your household knows and understands your hurricane plans. Include the office, kids’ day care, and anywhere else you frequent in your hurricane plans. Ensure your business has a continuity plan to continue operating when disaster strikes.
Know your Evacuation Zone
You may have to evacuate quickly due to a hurricane if you live in an evacuation zone. Learn your evacuation routes, practice with your household and pets, and identify where you will stay.
- Follow the instructions from local emergency managers, who work closely with state, local, tribal, and territorial agencies and partners. They will provide the latest recommendations based on the threat to your community and appropriate safety measures.
Recognize Warnings and Alerts
Have several ways to receive alerts. Download the FEMA app and receive real-time alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five locations nationwide. Sign up for community alerts in your area and be aware of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) and Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA), which require no sign up.
Those with Disabilities
Identify if you may need additional help during an emergency if you or anyone else in your household is an individual with a disability.
Review Important Documents
Make sure your insurance policies and personal documents, such as ID, are up to date. Make copies and keep them in a secure password-protected digital space.
Strengthen your Home
De-clutter drains and gutters, bring in outside furniture, and consider hurricane shutters.
Get Tech Ready
Keep your cell phone charged when you know a hurricane is in the forecast and purchase backup charging devices to power electronics.
Help your Neighborhood
Check with neighbors, senior adults, or those who may need additional help securing hurricane plans to see how you can be of assistance to others
Have enough supplies for your household, include medication, disinfectant supplies and pet supplies in your go bag or car trunk. You may not have access to these supplies for days or even weeks after a hurricane.
Safety in Commercial Buildings
ICC - International Code Council is an organization that monitors building codes & standards to provide the highest level of safety in the world.
Building Safety Month—is an initiative of the International Code Council (ICC) and their 64,000 member’s across the world, as well as their partners in building construction and design, and the safety community. Building Safety Month is an opportunity to educate insurance and commercial property professionals, as well as the general public, on “what it takes to create safe, resilient, affordable, and energy efficient homes and buildings,” according to the ICC website. Some of the topics and tips shared throughout the month include Disaster Safety and Mitigation, as well as Fire Safety and Awareness. The general public may not be aware how codes and code officials “improve and protect the places where we live, learn, work, worship, and play,” and this month can certainly improve that awareness!
IMPORTANT TIPS FROM THE ICC Disaster Safety & Mitigation:
- If you live in a high wind or hurricane prone area and do not have tested and code-approved shutters for protection from windborne debris, consider temporarily protecting your doors and windows by mounting exterior grade, 7/16" minimum thickness plywood and fastening it into place. Visit www.flash.org for detailed instructions on how to use plywood for emergency board-up.
- Consider building or retrofitting to create a tornado-safe room in your home. Follow ICC/ NSSA 500 Standard for detailed construction information and to ensure you achieve the highest level of protection for your family.
- In wildfire prone areas, remove fine (dead grass, leaves, etc.) and coarse fuels (dead twigs, branches, etc.) within 30 feet of a building to create a survivable space in case of wildfire. Be sure to remove dry leaf and pine litter from roofs, rain gutters, decks, and walkways. Follow ICC’s International Wildland-Urban Interface Code® for detailed requirements.
- Flooded roads could have significant damage hidden by floodwaters. Never drive through floodwaters or on flooded roads. Do not attempt to cross a flowing stream. It takes only six inches of fast flowing water to sweep you off your feet and two feet of water to move an SUV-sized vehicle.
A flood can happen without warning from many different kinds of weather. SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge & Woodbridge/Lorton are #heretohelp .
PREPARE FOR A FLOOD
Flooding is a temporary overflow of water onto land that is normally dry. Floods are the most common natural disaster in the United States. Failing to evacuate flooded areas or entering flood waters can lead to injury or death.
- Result from rain, snow, coastal storms, storm surges and overflows of dams and other water systems.
- Develop slowly or quickly. Flash floods can come with no warning.
- Cause outages, disrupt transportation, damage buildings and create landslides.
If you are under a flood warning:
- Find safe shelter right away.
- Do not walk, swim or drive through flood waters. Turn Around, Don’t Drown!
- Remember, just six inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
- Stay off bridges over fast-moving water.
- Depending on the type of flooding:
- Evacuate if told to do so.
- Move to higher ground or a higher floor.
- Stay where you are.
OUR TEAM is Why You Want to Choose SERVPRO
We are always HERE TO HELP!
Our team is the main reason you want to choose SERVPRO for your restoration needs! Our office staff has ten plus years of experience and they are all water damage certified through the IICRC. This means that they can answer a lot of your questions and submit your estimates with experience and knowledge.
Our production team are certified in water, fire, mold and bio-hazard and have five plus years of experience in the industry.
Our production managers also have ten plus years of experience so when they are on-sight doing estimates or walk-throughs you are in solid, knowledgeable hands.
Our whole team is uniformed and background checked to give you peace of mind with us in your home or building. More than all of our certifications and screenings, we care. Our team cares about our clients and their property. We will treat your home or business as if it were our own. You can TRUST SERVPRO of Dale City/Lake Ridge and the SERVPRO of Woodbridge/Lorton with all of your restoration needs!