SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney rolls out to Texas to help with restoration efforts
Unprecedented disasters call for unprecedented response.
Which is exactly what SERVPRO of Rockville-Olney and SERVPRO of Silver Spring North did -- crews from the Maryland franchises swiftly prepared, packed up and departed for Dallas, Texas to lend a hand to the massive cleanup and restoration efforts in the wake of the historic snow storms that devastated hundreds of lives and damaged thousands and thousands of homes and businesses throughout numerous southern U.S. states. Our local teams left for Plano, a suburb of Dallas, on Wednesday (2/17/21) mid-morning and arrived well over the estimated 24-hour trip due to treacherous road conditions in many stretches of highways. As of 2/23/21, SERVPRO corporate's urgent call for more help from other franchises continues, as officials project 35,000 lead referrals. SERVPRO has received more than 22,000 lead referrals in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas, Missouri and other surrounding locations. Home and business owners in Texas and a host of other states including Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Louisiana are crying for help to clean up and restore their structures. Extreme cold weather, especially in states that aren't usually prepared for such conditions, commonly cause frozen pipes that result in water damage. In Texas, for example, the temperatures in many cities dipped below 20 degrees F the weekend of Feb. 13, when many celebrated Lunar New Year and Valentine's Day. Both indoor & outdoor pipes in thousands of homes froze due to improper insulation. The water damage can be extensive, as most homes in the south have attics and not basements, causing water to trickle down from the top and wreak havoc to ceilings and walls in addition to floorings, furniture and other household items. Other areas in the homes where pipes are unheated or partially heated that are also at risk of freezing include crawl spaces and garages. State of emergency has been declared in the affected southern states, making it easier for residents to apply for federal aid to help pay for losses, repairs and other areas including salary loss due to inability to get to work. Insurance companies also are making it easier for policy holders to file claims, and restoration companies like SERVPRO also are doing what they can to make it easier for customers to file insurance claims, by making electronic claim forms easily available as part of their response process.
Another potential hazard to consider as the snow/ice begins to melt is damage to your roof and ice dams. An ice dam is formed when snow melts unevenly on a roof and refreezes into a dam at the edge of the roof, near the eaves. This dam prevents any further snowmelt from draining off of the roof. This standing water can back up under shingles, leak into a home, and cause significant water damage to ceilings, walls, and other areas. Ice dams can also tear off gutters and loosen shingles.
Snow and ice can cause significant damage to your gutters and roof. The additional weight of snow and ice can even cause a roof to collapse. When there’s a cold snap, water can get into cracks and small spaces and expand when it freezes, causing larger cracks and more damage. The repetition of freezing and thawing cycles can cause small cracks to get larger.
Our SERVPRO corporate experts offer these suggestions for affected residents:
What you can do until help arrives
After any water damage situation, your primary focus should be safety.
- Is it safe to stay in the house?
- Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
- Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
- Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!
What To Do After Flooding
- Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
- Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
- Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
- Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
- Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
- Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
- Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
- Gather loose items from floors.
What Not To Do After Flooding
- Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
- Don't leave books, magazines, or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
- Don't use your household vacuum to remove water.
- Don't use television or other household appliances.
- Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.