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Keep Your Team Safe When Severe Storms Hit | SERVPRO of West Forsyth County

9/19/2023 (Permalink)

Business man holding an umbrella and briefcase with a dark thunderstorm behind him. If your home or business was damaged in a storm, call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County to get you back in action.

As a business owner, you never really know what to expect during a typical workday. With so many challenges to overcome, it can be hard to focus on the possibility of trouble striking from outside the workplace, but you’ll need to consider it to keep your workplace safe.

Severe weather is one of the many obstacles that business owners must consider when preparing their businesses for the unexpected. By giving your team the knowledge to navigate a Winston-Salem storm, you create a secure environment that not only safeguards your employees but also keeps operations running smoothly.

Give your employees the storm safety training they need to stay safer and respond quickly during a Winston-Salem storm:

Know Your Risk

There are a variety of different hazards to consider as you begin preparing your team to face a catastrophe. Focus on some of our most prevalent weather events as you build a plan specific to your building’s location.

Winston-Salem encounters a slew of weather threats throughout the year, like thunderstorms, flooding, snowfall and hurricanes. These weather threats can be devastating for the community, leading to widespread disruption and costly damage. Knowing what might strike in our area is crucial to protecting your business.

Finding out if your business is in a flood zone can help you prepare your workplace for unexpected floodwaters. Take advantage of weather alert systems that provide real-time weather advisories, and check the forecast before each workday.

Make a Plan to Communicate

Regular communication is vital for building a positive work culture within your organization. This communication shouldn’t only be saved for a regular workday; you must have a way to stay connected when disaster strikes.

All of your employees should have access to the same system to ensure you can get in touch no matter when disaster strikes. A well-established communication method allows you to keep them informed about any changes in the weather situation and provide safety guidelines. This ensures that your employees remain safe and well-prepared for any emergency.

Plan Your Evacuation

It can be stressful to envision, but you’ll need to prepare for the possibility of a storm evacuation. Take proactive measures to protect your team by clearly marking exits and practicing your evacuation plan so they can escape as quickly as possible.

When severe weather poses a threat to your business, your team may also be forced to shelter in place. Find a designated area within the building that offers the most protection and store an emergency kit inside.

You never know when calamity might strike your Winston-Salem business, but having a plan in place will ensure your team is prepared! Help your employees keep their cool in the middle of a storm by taking the time to plan ahead.

Don’t let extreme weather take control! If storms strike your business, SERVPRO can help you restore your losses.

Storm-Proofing Your Home: Essential Tips | SERVPRO of West Forsyth County

9/19/2023 (Permalink)

Empty parking lot with lots of greenery shown during a heavy downpour of rain. Have you been impacted by the unusual summer storm season? SERVPRO of West Forsyth County has your back when you experience flood and water damage.

Around Winston-Salem, it is common to see thunderstorms, strong winds, intense rain and serious flash flooding. In fact, we may see all that in the same day during the summer months! The heat and humidity in a North Carolina summer create ideal conditions for storms, so you need to take steps to prepare your home and keep your family safe.

Wondering how to do that? It can be quite simple! Every step you take now to secure your house can ensure it’s safer for your family and less likely to experience damage during a storm.

Are You Prepared for the Season?

Don’t make things overcomplicated! Many storm-proofing measures may already be integrated into your regular routines or on your monthly or quarterly home maintenance list.

Regardless of your location, strong winds and heavy rain can pose risks to your home and yard. You want to remove anything from your property that could either be turned into a projectile by wind or cause a leak or structural damage to the house itself.

That means you need to regularly trim your trees, along with removing branches and other debris from the yard. You should also make sure that your trash can, patio furniture and other outdoor objects are strapped down or otherwise secured in some way.

Check your gutters regularly, and make sure they’re clear of branches, leaves and other debris. This will help ensure water flows properly away from your house during heavy rain.

You should also check the structure of your house regularly, looking for potential water entry points, like broken or missing shingles on the roof or gaps around the windows. Fix those promptly.

Defending the Exterior of Your Home

While many storm preparations can be done without spending extra money, some extra upgrades can provide you with a little more peace of mind.

Storm shutters can be a good investment since they can fortify your windows against strong winds, or you may want to consider replacing your existing windows with a higher-quality window in general. If your property has lots of trees, gutter guards or something similar can be helpful in keeping the gutters clear of debris.

If there is a modular building on your property, like a shed, make sure it has strong tie-downs that keep it adhered to the ground.

In the unfortunate event of storm damage, SERVPRO® of West Forsyth County is available around the clock to efficiently restore your home.

Safeguard Your Summer BBQs | SERVPRO of West Forsyth County

9/19/2023 (Permalink)

Man holding tongs above grill preparing food outdoors Have you had a barbeque gone wrong? Call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County to get your space back in shape.

As summer arrives in North Carolina, everyone is gearing up to spend sun-filled days lounging by the pool and grilling out with beloved friends and family. Cookouts are a blast, but it is essential to practice grilling safety to prevent hazardous situations and potential fires while you’re having fun this summer.

Here are some essential tips to guarantee a delightful summer BBQ experience for your family, while keeping fire risks at bay.

The Best Spot for Your Grill

When it comes to grilling safety, the first step is selecting the perfect location for your grill. Place it outside, away from enclosed spaces such as garages or roof overhangs. Make sure to adhere to Winston-Salem grilling regulations, including keeping grills at least 25 feet away from any structure to ensure safety.

It’s crucial to find an area that has adequate ventilation and also to make sure that nothing flammable is placed over your grill.

If you are using a charcoal barbecue, check for dents, cracks and ash buildup before lighting it. Owners of propane grills should thoroughly inspect the gas lines for leaks and make sure that the connections are tight. To avoid dangerous fire situations, any problems with leaking propane tanks or lines must be fixed at once.

Staying Safe With Open Flames

When grilling, it is imperative to remain attentive and have a water source readily available as a precautionary measure. Utilize a spray bottle to control flare-ups, and keep a hose or fire extinguisher within reach.

After cooking, hand off the food to someone else and remember to turn off the gas or close the vents for charcoal grills to stop the oxygen supply. Properly dispose of ash and embers in a metal can to eliminate potential fire hazards, even after you have finished grilling. Before concluding your BBQ, make sure your grill has completely cooled down.

Stay Safe and Have a Great Time

We wish you a safe, southern summer filled with delightful moments. However, in the unfortunate event of a fire incident during your BBQ, remember that SERVPRO® of West Forsyth County is always ready to provide professional fire damage restoration services.

Don’t allow fire damage to linger in your home—reach out to SERVPRO of West Forsyth County for speedy, professional restoration assistance.

Your Next Moves After Water Damages Your Home | SERVPRO of West Forsyth County

9/19/2023 (Permalink)

Pool of water sitting on top of a herringbone patterned wood floor with furniture nearby If you discover water damage in your home or business, call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County right away.

You might have other things on your mind than water, but it plays a significant role in our daily lives. You might say it’s an underappreciated asset! You can turn it on in your sink with the flip of a faucet handle, or send it swirling through your washing machine by simply clicking “on.”

When we’re using water in the home, it’s under control. Contrast that with the water behaves in nature—it’s wild and often untamed.

Sadly, it can become the same in your house, if a water disaster occurs. Water damage can quickly crop up if a leak develops in your kitchen sink or if your basement floods due to heavy rains.

You can many steps to prevent these things, but you won’t be able to entirely prevent every instance. That’s why it’s important to know what to do when water damage strikes.

What to Do First

Spotted water where it shouldn’t be? The faster you can respond, the better your outcome will be. The longer that water sits on the floor or pours in through the roof, the more likely you are to incur significant costs and additional damage, like mold growth or structural problems.

Your first step should be to play detective and find the source of the water. If there’s a big hole in your roof where a tree cut through it, that will be quite obvious. But if your washing machine is leaking, you may have to work a little harder to find the problem.

Find the source, then work to stop it. Turn off the water source at the cutoff valve. You will also want to cut off electricity in the outlets near the water damage to remove the potential for other hazards.

Once you are safe and secure, give our SERVPRO® team a call. We are available 247 to jump into action when water damage occurs.

A Peak at Our Water Damage Restoration Process

When you call us, we’ll ask you a number of questions to gather information about the type of damage you’re facing and the extent of the damage. This information will help us establish a project plan for completing your water damage restoration project.

We will ask that you snap a few pictures of your damages. These photos are helpful for us, and they will also be provided to your insurance provider to expedite the claims process.

From there, the action begins. Our team of water damage restoration experts will bring industry-leading equipment into your home to dry up all traces of water, including both obvious puddles and tiny droplets. Those tiny droplets, which can’t be seen by the human eye, can be disastrous, setting you up for mold growth and structural damage.

During this time, we will also be removing and drying soft materials in your house and other belongings. This falls in line with our “restore vs. replace” mentality, where we focus on saving as many items as possible.

Once the water damage issue is mitigated, we will turn our focus to finishing the restoration work, which may require construction services to return your home to preloss condition. No matter what’s needed, our SERVPRO team has you covered.

Do you have water damage in your home? Call us for fast and complete restoration.

Dealing With Storm Damage | SERVPRO of West Forsyth County

9/19/2023 (Permalink)

Dramatic night shot of a home with visible roof damage from a recently storm and fallen debris Summer storms affecting your property? Call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County to restore your space in no time!

Severe weather is a scary thing to deal with. Even when you were expecting it, the strength and severity of a storm can be much worse than you thought possible. Thunderstorms can blow in and out fast and create total destruction.

North Carolina in general has a variety of weather, but the spring months often bring severe storms, tornadoes and even the remnants of tropical storms and hurricanes that have moved into town from the coast. Strong thunderstorms and flooding rains are also possible throughout the year.

While being prepared before a storm can do a lot in protecting your home and your family, so can knowing what to do after a storm has left your property damaged. With safety as a priority, you can take a few steps to make sure your recovery goes smoothly.

Immediately After the Storm

As things begin to quiet down after a storm, it’s important to continue to be weather aware. Watch for lingering thunder and lightning, and keep a weather radio nearby in case another round of storms starts moving in. Make sure the path back to your shelter is clear so you can move to safety if another warning is issued.

Start sorting through what has happened by contacting your loved ones and checking in on everyone’s safety. If cell service isn’t working, send a few text messages before heading out to check on those around you.

Don’t go into any damaged buildings, but instead do what you can to identify who needs help and clear as much debris as possible. Make sure you clear anything out of the road you can to allow for emergency personnel to reach you.

As soon as you can safely do so, start taking photos of your own damage, and call SERVPRO® of West Forsyth County. We are right around the corner and available 247, so we are always ready to help.

As More Time Passes

As time begins to pass, the work that lies ahead of you will become more and more clear. You still need to stay very cautious of your surroundings. Wear protective clothing to avoid hazards like loose nails, and watch for trip hazards. Keep a close eye on the weather as well, and always be prepared to find shelter safely and quickly if another round of storms comes through.

When our team arrives at your property, they will make securing your home a priority. This may include tarping your roof or securing windows. We will also remove any standing water and start drying out anything that may have gotten wet during the storm. It’s our crew’s goal to save as much of your property as possible.

SERVPRO will work with your insurance company in order to make your claim process as smooth as possible. As the extent and severity of your damages comes to light, you may need to consider finding a safe place to house your family as work proceeds.

The most important part of the whole process is staying as calm as possible. Living through a severe storm is an awful experience, and seeing your home damaged can feel completely overwhelming. With a team of professionals working non-stop to put your home back together, you can take a deep breath and know that life will be back to normal fast.

If a storm leaves your home damaged, contact us for fast recovery. We’re here 247 when you need us.

When the Rain Comes... | SERVPRO of West Forsyth Count

9/19/2023 (Permalink)

image of a large body of water during a rain storm with ripples caused by the heavy downpour Water damage in your home? Not for long with SERVPRO of West Forsyth County on the case!

Rain can slow down the world and leave everything feeling fresh and new. It is a sweet gift on a hot day and an exciting way to bring in new seasons.

When rain gets hard and heavy, though, it can cover roadways and overwhelm yards fast. Heavy rain can come with other threats, too, including strong winds and flash floods. Our homes are built to withstand a lot, but a steady rain can challenge our gutters and cause our roofs to leak.

No matter what Mother Nature brings, SERVPRO® of West Forsyth County is here for you and your family. We can dry your home out after a flood, but we also want to make sure you stay safe through every storm.

Hazards of Intense Rain

North Carolina weather is one of the reasons many people move here or stay here. Mild winters and hot but comfortable summers mean we can spend plenty of time outdoors year-round. While our weather is mostly mild, there are still plenty of severe potentials we also face.

Severe thunderstorms, strong winds and even tornadoes are potential weather issues we can see throughout the year. Heavy rains can sometimes bring flash flooding as well, covering roadways and sweeping away anything in their path.

We can’t prevent acts of Mother Nature, but we can prepare for them. When severe weather is predicted, make sure you have two ways to receive local weather alerts and start preparing your home and your family.

Staying Safe

Safety should always be a top priority when you start preparing for severe weather. If you are traveling when a storm is near, head home or to a safe location as quickly as possible. Avoid roads that have flooded in the past, and stay on high ground as much as you are able.

To prepare your home, bring inside anything that could be blown around in wind or be swept away during a flood. Put anything that can’t be replaced in a location high away from the floor or the lower level of your home, and consider shutting the electricity off to your home. If water does enter your home, stay out of it as much as possible. Wait the storm out in a high location and give us a call to start getting things dry.

Future Prevention Strategies

With unpredictable weather, even the most prepared home could see a disaster. While we are working to recover your home after it has been damaged, we will also help you make some choices that could help stop another event.

A professional who can assess the grading and organic material in your yard can be helpful in creating a safe home from the outside in. Slopes keep water moving away, while organic materials absorb even the fastest falling rain to prevent puddles that could seep into your foundation.

A sump pump in your basement is another great way to prevent flooding in your home. Sump pumps direct water away from your foundation. If you already have one but still ended up with water in your home, consider upgrading to a larger unit.

We are always here for you when anything in your home needs recovery. Our team is available around the clock with a crew that is highly trained and has the equipment to take care of any damage fast. We will put your home back together quickly.

We are here for all of your water disasters. Contact us day or night for a quick recovery.

Outdoor Fires and Safety | SERVPRO of West Forsyth County

9/19/2023 (Permalink)

campfire-style fire pit with flames emerging from the top of the logs on the dark green grass Bonfire season is upon us! SERVPRO of West Forsyth County has your back with these helpful fire safety tips.

Have you felt any cool breezes yet? It may still be warm out, but fall is so close. Before you know it, evenings will be chilly and leaves will be crunchy. We can finally get out our pumpkin decorations and drink hot chocolate all day.

This is the perfect season for fire pits and roasted marshmallows as well. As you gather around the flames, though, make sure you do so safely in order to keep your home and your family protected.

At SERVPRO® , we are always ready to respond when your property experiences damage after a disaster, but we also want to help you stay safe. We want to make sure you know all the ways to prevent a bonfire from ever becoming anything other than a great way to spend an evening.

Tips for Starting the Fire

Keep things safe by doing a few things:

Do find the safest spot possible to have your fire. Choose a location that is open with no low hanging branches, free of leaf and other debris and away from structures.

Do keep water at hand. A bucket full can dampen anything that gets out of control before it becomes a problem. If there isn’t a way to keep water close, have a shovel and water or sand you can quickly toss on rogue flames.

Do take a look at the forecast. Even a light breeze can carry red hot embers into flammable materials and create a disaster. Check for weather advisories, and take a look at local burn bans and regulations. Those can change quickly, so always check before lighting anything.

Tips for While the Fire Is Hot

Make the whole evening safe by avoiding a few things you don’t want to do:

Don’t burn anything except firewood. Adding lighter fluid or other accelerants to your fire can result in a dangerous situation. Avoid throwing anything else in the fire as well to prevent out of control flames.

Don’t play near the fire. If you put out yard games, keep them a safe distance away. Make sure children and pets understand not to run or walk close to the flames in order to prevent accidents.

Don’t make a big fire. A small fire in a fire pit can be more enjoyable because you won’t have to worry about it getting out of control. Keep it small to prevent flames from wandering away and starting a disaster.

Don’t walk away from a warm fire pit. When you are done enjoying your evening, pour water on your flames and stick by them until everything is completely out and the embers have begun to cool.

Wildfire Prevention

Many wildfires are started by human error or negligence. If you are going to spend time enjoying your evening around a fire, make sure you are doing everything you can to protect your home and the environment.

If you do have damage from a fire, we are here to help. Our SERVPRO crew is always ready to respond and get your life put back together fast. Call us so you can get back to enjoying the beauty of fall.

Fire can cause a lot of damage in a short amount of time. Contact us day or night for immediate assistance.

Building Fire Safety Habits With Your Children | SERVPRO of West Forsyth County

6/10/2023 (Permalink)

Young boy staring at a lit match being held between his fingers SERVPRO of West Forsyth County is here for you and your family if you experience a fire in your home or business.

Parenting can be an emotional rollercoaster, with both triumphs and trials, but persevering through these obstacles to support your child’s learning and growth is what makes this journey so worth it. This requires teaching your kids some lessons that may be a little difficult, both to teach and to learn.

Fire safety is one of those lessons. While the topic can be a little scary for kids, it’s an important one that must be taught.

You don’t need to be nervous about bringing the topic of fire safety to your household! There are a ton of methods to ensure your kids retain this information without overwhelming them in the process.

Explain the Dangers of Fire

Highlighting your home’s specific risks will be the most effective way to help your children gain a strong understanding of these principles. Teaching kids how and where fire might spark in your home is just one way to teach fire safety in a way that helps this information really stick.

As you point out specific examples around the house, don’t forget to bring up the danger that matches and lighters can cause. Engaging in a serious discussion about fire hazards will effectively convey to your children the importance of treating such items with the utmost caution and promptly handing them to an adult when found.

Familiarize Them With Authority

Young children may find firefighters in full uniform intimidating, which can be dangerous when an emergency arises and they must rely on these individuals for help. Consider taking your child to local events that will allow them to connect positively with these heroes, and show them books and videos that highlights the hard work firefighters do.

Let them know that these individuals only want to lend a hand in the middle of an emergency. Discuss their duties and the importance of relying on them during a fire. Try to turn your fire drills into a fun game like seeing who can stop, drop and roll the quickest.

Make a Game Plan Together

Don’t overlook the importance of having a fire evacuation plan for your household! Encourage your kids to help in planning the escape route, allowing them to feel involved and generating a plan that everyone at home can understand. Turn it into an art project by challenging them to draw the emergency plan as quickly as possible.

Consider highlighting other exits your family can access in the event that the original route is obstructed during a fire. Remind your children that using windows as a means of escape should only be done in the event of a fire and never while playing.

Once you’ve crafted your unique strategy, designate a safe meeting place outside your home that is within reach for everyone after evacuation. Make it a routine to practice your strategy a few times a year, and ensure your kids know how to dial 911!

Fires can cause widespread damage. Call us for a thorough and efficient restoration.

Be Prepared When Severe Winds Hit Winston-Salem | SERVPRO of West Forsyth County

6/5/2023 (Permalink)

Dense forest area with trees bending due to intense wind and rain If you've suffered from storm-related damage to your home or business, make SERVPRO of West Forsyth County your first call.

A sudden rush of cool wind can feel like a miracle on a blistering hot day. Wind can be an unseen hero when you need it the most, but it can also be a dangerous interruption when it becomes too strong.

When it’s convenient, the wind might save lives, but it’s more well-known for being a hazardous weather threat that frequently causes significant damage. Extreme winds have no limits, and they can be hazardous even when the sky is completely clear.

Learn more about the dangers related to severe winds and take action to protect your Winston-Salem home when they blow.

The Different Kinds of Wind

Around half of the observed wind damage is stirred up during thunderstorms, even more so than tornadoes. Even if it appears to be insignificant, the wind is a serious threat that must not be overlooked.

Although there are many dangers associated with thunderstorms, wind is one of the most common. When gusts reach speeds of up to 60 miles per hour, debris can effortlessly be thrown around.

Tornadoes are especially dangerous because of their combination of straight-line winds, downdrafts and bursts, which can cause damage even in areas where there is no rain. Straight-line winds are a particularly dangerous threat that can generate at speeds of over 100 miles an hour.

Tornadoes are a common and dangerous natural occurrence in Winston-Salem, with our city experiencing two tornadoes on average each year. The most recent tornadoes that have hit us have caused catastrophic damage, emphasizing the importance of taking tornado warnings and preparedness measures seriously.

Wind Damage and Prevention

When powerful winds hit, the damage can be widespread and devastating. In addition to toppled trees, blown-around debris and downed power lines, extreme winds can cause significant damage to buildings, vehicles and other structures.

Staying safe during high winds requires a combination of preparation and quick action. One of the most important steps you can take is to stay informed about weather conditions in your area by subscribing to emergency alerts or monitoring local news stations.

To stay safe during high winds, it’s important to take steps to protect yourself and your property. You can begin by pruning and removing loose limbs from your trees on a constant schedule, as well as removing any items throughout your lawn that could damage your home during a wind event.

Examine your home and property to check if you’ve sustained damage after the winds have subsided. Take special care of your roof so you can repair any damaged shingles before leakage occurs. If you’re faced with sudden wind damage, call SERVPRO day or night, and we can begin the restoration process ASAP.

Has your home been damaged by wind? Call us and get things cleaned up fast.

Be Cautious of Concealed Water Destruction | SERVPRO® of West Forsyth County

5/9/2023 (Permalink)

 img src =”bucket” alt = " blue bucket in the middle of the living area catching water falling from the ceiling ” > Think you may have water damage in your home? Here are some tips from SERVPRO of West Forsyth County to find the source.

Water damage attacks in a variety of ways, with one of its signatures being to hide in your home until you finally notice the destruction. Concealed water damage can occur in any room of your home, with the repercussions manifesting as mold, leaks and costly losses.

Being able to spot sneaky problems like this before they grow into a full-blown water emergency is the best way to protect your home from damage. As long as you keep a close eye out, you’ll be able to quickly spot water damage before it wreaks havoc on your Winston-Salem home.

Below are a few of the most important places to look as you search for hidden water damage:

Your roof. When’s the last time you climbed up to your roof to check for damage? If it’s been a while, then you might be dealing with concealed roof water damage.

Even when you are performing basic maintenance, leaks that develop on your roof are difficult to spot. A minor leak might seem like no big deal, only for it to transform into an unavoidable and expensive water emergency.

When water damage occurs on your roof, it may also seep into your Lewisville attic, creating a different hidden issue. Leakage and excess moisture can be a huge problem in your dim, humid attic that leads to mold growth.

In your bathroom. Water damage, particularly hidden water damage, is nearly always discovered in the bathroom. The bathroom equipment we use can suddenly fail and cause water problems that are difficult to detect.

Look for any wet spots around your sink and any leaks coming from your faucet. Search your toilet and bathtub for similar warning signs like puddled water and excess moisture in the bathroom

Knowing where to look and what to look for will be most helpful when dealing with sneaky bathroom water damage. It’s also helpful to inspect your plumbing often and have any concerns checked by a professional ASAP so you can avoid running into any damage in the future.

Other appliances. Home appliances are designed to make life a little easier, but when they fail, they may conceal a huge water crisis. Water can lurk around these massive pieces of equipment, concealing any evidence of damage.

It might be challenging to check for water leaks near your devices without first removing them from the area. Moving them out of the way will allow you to search the entire area for signs of damage.

Before turning on your appliances, quickly check them for leaks and other signs of water damage. Avoid running into a future water catastrophe by retiring your old or malfunctioning appliances as soon as it is necessary.

Dealing with a water emergency? Our SERVPRO specialists can be on the scene of the disaster ASAP to restore your water-damaged home!