Recent Storm Damage Posts
National Preparedness Month: Fire Prevention for the Fall Season
Fall leaves can become a fire hazard if not cleared from a residential property in timely manner
Fall is just around the corner. Trees will soon begin their transformation of creating vibrant foliage over a short period for all to admire before the temperature dwindles, and blustery winds leave the trees bare.
Suddenly there are several formations of leaves scattered across your yard, needing appropriate disposal. You want to take extra precautionary measures from any dried leaves turning into instant fire starters.
Leaves alone will not cause a fire. It is essential to pay attention to how you throw out things like woodstove ashes. You should also be very cautious of any mulch on your property. Smoking materials could accidentally be discarded into the combustible material and easily ignite a fire putting your residence in jeopardy.
As leaves and other flammable debris build up around your home, make it a routine to remove them periodically. Prune trees, rake up leaves and twigs. Don't store fuel in your home or garage. Keep your roof, gutters, and downspouts clear of debris. Another thing to consider is removing fuel from lawnmowers before storing them for winter. It would be one less-flammable object on your premise to worry over.
Some homeowners grill year-around. The Fall weather tends to generate above average wind forces making grilling outdoors more of a risk for an incidental fire breaking out. Keeping the grill at a safe distance from your house, a shed or gazebo could prevent an unnecessary fire disaster.
The following grill equipment should be maintained appropriately to avoid becoming a flammable hazard:
- Check grill hoses for cracks, holes, and durability.
- Check for blockages especially in the tube that runs to the burners.
- Check for leaks by running a solution of one-part liquid soap, one-part water along with hoses and on connections. Open the valve at your tank and check to make sure that gas isn't escaping, which will be indicated by bubbles at the leaking points.
- Adjust hoses away from hot areas or where grease might drip on them.
- Cover your grill when cooled and not in use to help protect its parts from inclement weather, falling leaves, and insect activity.
- Store propane tanks outside keep away from your house. Always check to make sure valves are firmly turned off.
If you are considering decorating your home for Halloween, remember that safety comes first. Keep decorations away from open flames and other heat sources and use battery-operated lights instead of candles in jack-o-lanterns.
SERVPRO of East Brown County knows how flames quickly move and cause a significant amount of damage in a very limited time frame. That’s why our team is prepared to with our trained technicians to cleanup of fire, smoke and soot damage.
We offer specialized technicians in the following areas:
- Fire & Smoke Restoration
- Odor Control
- Upholstery & Fabric Cleaning
If a fire devastates your home and are needing immediate assistance, give SERVPRO of East Brown County a call at – (920) 499-7050
SERVPRO of East Brown County Wants to Help Keep Pets Safe in Natural Disasters and Everyday Emergencies
A man embraces a large dog outdoors
We at SERVPRO of East Brown County want your loved ones, which for some people includes family pets, to remain safe during a natural disaster crisis. For some individuals, an abrupt evacuation may be required to sustain those secure measures.
From flooding or fires caused by violent storms, mapping out an emergency plan that is specially designed for your pets will help to make it easier for you or first responders to transfer your domesticated animals promptly safely.
Here are a few tips to help your family's pet have adequate arrangements during a disaster-stricken period:
- Look to prepare ahead of time for a family member or friend to temporarily board your pets. Even ask if there's an area within their residence available for you to store the necessities your pet may require during their brief stay with them.
- If you're unable to leave your pet with a family member or friend, know which hotels and motels along your evacuation route will accept pets in an emergency. Call ahead for reservations if you know you may need to evacuate. Ask if no pet policies could be waived in a crisis.
- Include your pets in evacuation drills so that they become used to entering and traveling in their carriers calmly.
For some reason you are unable to get to your pets safely, there are effective ways to help first responders locate them. Just like you would use a rescue sticker for the children in your home, the same can be applied for pets. You could order this sticker online or ask your veterinarian if they have them available. Make sure to write the types and number of pets in your household and your veterinarian's phone number. Remember, visibility is of utmost importance to rescue workers. By doing these extra steps, this increases the chances of a safe and speedy return of your pet to the family.
Being unexpectedly forced to leave your house unattended due to moderate or severe storm damage can be frustrating. Know that the trained professionals at SERVPRO of East Brown County are here to respond immediately. We are storm and water damage specialists who get started promptly to get your property dry and back to pre-storm condition.
We are available to you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Give our East Brown County location a call at, (920) 499-7050.
Storm Damage in East Brown County: SERVPRO Is Always Here for You
The exterior of the house is falling apart after being hit by a severe storm and is leaving the interior drywall is exposed
Purchasing a home can be one of the most rewarding moments in any stage of your life. Whether your house has stood on its very foundation for the past 50+ years or the residence is only several months old, you truly never know how sturdy of a structure you are living under until the first significant storm blows through. Waiting to see if your roof, doors, windows, or basement is entirely leak-proof is not something you prefer to do. Yet, you may find yourself anxiously keeping a watchful eye on just in case you need to spring into action immediately.
When it comes to your financial investment, the what-ifs of something going wrong should not outweigh the excitement of being a new homeowner.
It is best to be prepared with a frontline defense to salvage any future structural damage related to severe weather. Be sure to download our SERVPRO Ready Plan app onto your cell phone or another easily accessible electronic device, today. You can set up your profile in just a few simple steps and have immediate access to contacting the SERVPRO franchise closet to your home’s address.
At SERVPRO of East Brown County, we make it OUR business to respond to storm damage immediately. If a storm or natural disaster damages your property, we will work quickly and efficiently to fix the problem and get your life back on track.
We know severe weather can ravage any dwelling causing anywhere from minor repairs to substantial losses. That’s why we have highly trained storm damage specialists who get started promptly to get your property dry and back to pre-storm condition.
SERVPRO uses advanced equipment and scientific drying techniques. We make it a point to document the drying process to validate your home or business is ready. Our Water Damage Restoration and Applied Structural Drying Technicians are here to help make life a little less chaotic for you.
We are here to speak with you on any concerns you may have about your residence. We’re conveniently available to you 24 hours a day and 365 days a year. Please give us call at, (920) 499-7050.
Our professionals have the training and expertise to help make it “Like it never even happened.”
Preparing for a power outage
This past month, record rainfall and heavy winds impacted northeastern Wisconsin. Many homes experienced power outages and were out of electricity not only for a day, but some for weeks. WPS reported 73,000 customers were out, and the company was working hard to rebuild their network. SEVRPRO of East Brown County wants to thank both WE energies and WPS for working hard and restoring the power in our community.
As local officials work on providing help to the Green Bay community, you may be on your own until conditions improve. A power outage can be a stressful time for a family but having some tips and tricks up your sleeve may help in a time of need.
First things first:
Some tips to remember in case of a power outage provided by ready.gov:
- Keep freezers and refrigerators closed.
- Do not use a gas stove to heat your home.
- Disconnect appliances and electronics to avoid damage from electrical surges.
- Have alternate plans for refrigerating medicines or using power-dependent medical devices.
- If safe, go to an alternate location for heat or cooling.
- Check on neighbors.
Did you know your freezer can keep the food safe, if unopened, for at least four hours?
If you have experienced flooding
If your sump pump stopped working and you have experienced flooding, the first thing one should do is call in the professionals. Take caution walking in standing water.
After the power is back on
You may want to inspect your property to access any damage done by the storm, but just be cautious when accessing your property as there might be some fallen cables. You should report any phone lines that are down right away.
Ready.gov has provided some tips on what to do after the power is back on:
- When in doubt, throw it out! Throw away any food that has been exposed to temperatures 40 degrees or higher for two hours or more, or that has an unusual odor, color, or texture.
- If the power is out for more than a day, discard any medication that should be refrigerated, unless the drug’s label says otherwise. Consult your doctor for any questions you may have.
About SERVPRO of East Brown County
SERVPRO of East Brown County is a locally owned franchise. Since we are a local business, that means we are faster to any sized disaster. From flooding, due to a broken pipe, to fire damage, and even bio hazard cleaning, you can count on SERVPRO of East Brown County to be there when you need us. We’re here for you at any time or day, simply call us at (920) 499-7050
Thunderstorm preparation in East Brown County
Despite thunderstorm’s small size, they can still be dangerous in our east Green Bay community. Thunderstorms can include lighting, flash flooding which can cause water damages to properties, heavy winds which can knock down trees and cause outages, tornadoes, and hail. They can occur at any time of the time year but are more likely to happen during the spring and summer seasons in Wisconsin.
What are considered severe thunderstorms and what causes them?
Contrary to popular belief, not all thunderstorms are severe. The national weather service does not consider a thunderstorm “severe” unless it's capable of producing one or more of these conditions:
-hail one inch or larger in diameter
-winds equal or exceed 58 miles an hour
-funnel cloud or tornado
Besides looking at east Green Bay weather reports, another way to detect an oncoming storm is to look for cumulonimbus clouds. Cumulonimbus clouds are large dense, tall vertical clouds that are often associated with thunderstorms. Thunderstorms form when there is moisture, unstable air and lift. They often develop ahead of cold fronts, an area where warm and cool air is unstable.
How to plan for a thunderstorm?
As soon as you hear thunder, you should go inside immediately. Make sure your outside furniture (and belongings) are secure. If boating or swimming outside, get to land and find a safe shelter or go to your vehicle as soon as possible. Avoid any flooded roadways, remember “turn around, don’t drown!” Pay attention to weather reports and warnings and sign up for weather alerts from our local East Green Bay news stations.
If your sump pump stopped working and/or your basement flooded due to a storm it is best to contact SERVPRO of East Brown County as soon possible to avoid further damages. Remember SERVPRO of East Brown County is open 24/7/365. We are ready to help you in case of any water damage in your property.
When Storms or Floods hit the Green Bay area, SERVPRO is ready!
This photo shows storm damage we helped clean up in the Green Bay area.
SERVPRO of East Brown County specializes in storm and flood damage restoration. Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.
Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.
Resources to Handle Floods and Storms
When storms hit the Green Bay area, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.
Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 920-499-7050.
March is American Red Cross Month
Courtesy: American Red Cross
When disasters strike anywhere in the nation, you can almost always count on the fact volunteers from the American Red Cross will mobilize there to help with recovery.
The United States honors the organization every year when the President declares March National Red Cross Month.
The American Red Cross was founded in 1881 and is a charitable organization that relies on donations and volunteers to carry out their mission.
Red Cross volunteers travel near and far to help people who’ve been affected by natural disasters like fires, floods, hurricanes and tornadoes.
The organization is also well known for other work like collecting blood donations, offering military families support and training for certifications in fields like CPR, lifeguarding and first aid.
The American Red Cross is part of the Global Red Cross Network, which is the world’s largest volunteer network. There are Red Cross organizations in 187 individual countries.
This month, we honor those Red Cross volunteers who help carry out the organization’s mission. They are “everyday heroes,” who are making the world a better place.
For more information on the Red Cross and how you can get involved, you can visit redcross.org.
Winter Weather in Wisconsin
If you’re a Northeast Wisconsinite we don’t have to tell you the weather this winter has been a bit, shall we say, crazy?
We’ve experienced snow storms one day, sub zero temps the next, temperatures rising to the forties, snow melting, freezing and falling again. It’s enough to make your head spin!
February has been particularly bad in terms of snow storms. It’s as if we barely shovel out from one storm and the next has already begun.
While Wisconsinites are no strangers to the season, the wintry weather can pose serious challenges to your home or business. Your property can be damaged by the heavy snow, winds and water that come with the rapid changes in weather.
This blog contains a few reminders about the hazards of the season and what you can do to prevent any damage.
First off, frozen, bursting pipes are a big concern as temperatures rise and fall rapidly. Pipes are likely to freeze when the temperatures drop below 20 degrees and Team SERVPRO of East Brown County has answered MANY calls for flooding thanks to frozen pipes over the last few weeks.
Pipes are more likely to freeze if they are not insulated and if they are in colder areas of your home or business, like the basement, or even outside.
Outdoor pipes most likely to freeze include:
- Outdoor hose bibs
- Swimming pool supply lines
- Water sprinkler lines
Pipes in unheated or partially heated areas are also at risk of freezing, including:
- Crawl spaces
So, now is the time to make sure you’re keeping those pipes warm, running water through them or insulating them if need-be. If you notice water pressure dropping, that’s a sign a pipe is in trouble. Take care of it immediately, because the damage a burst pipe causes can be very serious.
We’ve also warned you about ice dams and now is a good time to remind you about those. Ice dams form on your roof when snow melts on your warmer attic and then freezes on your colder gutters and eaves. Those frozen dams can damage your roof and gutters and/or push water into your home, causing flood damage.
One good way to prevent ice dams is to use a snow rake to pull ice and snow off your roof before it has the chance to cause any damage.
That brings us to our third reminder, snow itself can simply become too heavy as it builds up and cause your roof to crack, lose shingles, or even collapse.
A snow raking will help prevent this too!
Some winter storms come with high winds, which can obviously pose problems to your properties. Whether the wind causes direct damage to your home or business, or sends debris like tree limbs into your home or business, there is the potential for issues there.
And finally, when the temperatures rise again, all the snow we’ve gotten (and continue to get!) will melt and that extra water has to go somewhere. Six inches of snow will create about one inch of water once melted and that can cause trouble.
The excess water can make lakes and rivers rise, which can cause flooding. The water can also make its way into your basement all on its own.
So, now is a good time to make sure your sump pump is working. You can also work to clear the snow from around your foundation before it melts and make sure your gutters are clear and draining away from your home or business!
Team SERVPRO of East Brown County cleaned up a lot of flooded basements in the Green Bay area when we had those few days of rain and snowmelt a few weeks back. We know how fast damage can happen, so if you can take a few steps to prevent that damage, it’s definitely a good idea.
However, if something goes wrong and you need our help thanks to old man winter, we are here for you. Call us 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 920-499-7050.
Explaining Winter Weather Alerts
National Weather Service Logo
The weather this winter has been nothing short of wild. Wisconsinites have dealt with snow storms, rain and plunging and rising temperatures.
Since winter conditions can be dangerous, it’s a good idea to pay attention to the forecasts and make any preparations you can to stay safe.
But, in order to know how to prepare, you need to know what the forecasts are telling you. That’s where things like watches and warnings come into play.
We learned just what each watch and warning means from the National Weather Service (NWS) and we’d like to share that info with you!
According to the NWS there are Winter Storm Watches and Warnings, Winter Weather Advisories, Blizzard Warnings and Ice Warnings. Here’s what they mean:
- Winter Storm Watch – the NWS says, “A Winter Storm Watch is issued when there is the potential for significant and hazardous winter weather within 48 hours. It does not mean that significant and hazardous winter weather will occur...it only means it is possible.” (That hazardous winter weather can include snow, ice, sleet, blowing snow or a combination of these hazards.)
- Winter Storm Warning – according to the NWS, “A Winter Storm Warning is issued when a significant combination of hazardous winter weather is occurring or imminent.”
- Winter Weather Advisory – the NWS explains this as, “A Winter Weather Advisory will be issued for any amount of freezing rain, or when 2 to 4 inches of snow (alone or in combination with sleet and freezing rain), is expected to cause a significant inconvenience, but not serious enough to warrant a warning.”
- Blizzard Warning – the NWS says, “A Blizzard Warning means that the following conditions are occurring or expected within the next 12 to 18 hours: snow and/or blowing snow reducing visibility to 1/4 mile or less for 3 hours or longer and sustained winds of 35 mph or greater or frequent gusts to 35 mph or greater.”
- Ice Warning – According to the NWS, this is when ¼ inch accumulation or more of ice is expected.
All of these alerts can signal dangerous conditions. So, if you see them in the forecast, take precautions! Winter isn’t over yet. Be safe.
Winter Prep Profile: Your Car
Graphic courtesy of clearroads.org.
It’s no secret winter driving conditions can be downright hazardous in Northeast Wisconsin. So, it’s best to play it safe if you plan on hitting the road during any storms this season.
SERVPRO of East Brown County wants you to arrive at your destination safely and that’s why our first piece of advice is to make sure your car is in good condition (if you haven’t already, of course!). That means ensuring everything is working properly from your brakes to your windshield wipers. If you’re not much of a mechanic yourself, it’s a good idea to have a professional check everything out for you, just to be on the safe side!
Now, making sure your vehicle itself is winter-ready is only the first step in seasonal car preparation. This is the time of year you should have an emergency kit in your car at all times. Unsure of what goes in an emergency kit? The American Red Cross has this handy checklist (make sure to bring enough of all of these supplies for every person you’re traveling with):
- Blankets or sleeping bags
- Rain gear and extra sets of clothing like socks, mittens and hats
- Newspapers for insulation
- Plastic bags for sanitation
- Non-perishable food items, like granola bars and nuts
- Bottled water
- A charged cell phone
- A full tank of gas
The Red Cross also advises driving during daylight hours, leaving your headlights on, leaving plenty of space between your car and the other vehicles on the road and taking your time.
If the worst happens and you become stranded during winter weather, the Red Cross asks you to be safe and smart until help arrives. Here are steps you should take:
- Call for help and stay in your car until help arrives.
- Hang a brightly colored cloth on your antenna (preferably red).
- Run the engine occasionally to keep warm. Turn on the engine for about 10 minutes every hour.
- Leave the overhead light on when you have the engine running, in order to be seen.
- Do light exercises to keep your circulation moving.
- If more than one person is in the car, take turns sleeping.
- Huddle together for warmth.
- Drink fluids to avoid dehydration.
- Avoid overexertion. Wait for help instead of shoveling snow or pushing your car.
In Northeast Wisconsin we’re not strangers to the dangers of winter weather. But, that doesn’t mean we’re always prepared for unpredictable conditions. As always, Team SERVPRO of East Brown County asks you to be safe!
Winter Prep Profile: Your Pets
Photo courtesy of the American Red Cross.
Our final Winter Prep Profile for the month deals with our four-legged friends. Yes, we’re talking about the furrier members of our families, our pets!
It’s no secret that at SERVPRO of East Brown County we consider our pets family, and we know many of you do too. So, it’s important to consider how to keep them safe and sound during the winter months.
Even though most pets like dogs and cats come equipped with their own fur coats, they can be susceptible to the cold, just like us humans. The American Red Cross says it’s important that you prepare your pets if they have to go outside, even for a little while. The Red Cross advises pet sweaters and booties for long walks to keep them warm and brining any outdoor pets inside during especially cold or snowy days. Booties are also a good idea to keep your pets paws safe from salt and other snow-melting chemicals. If your pet gets snow-melt on their paws, wipe them off before they lick their paws.
If you cannot bring an animal inside, you must ensure it has a proper shelter. According to the Red Cross, the shelter must reach these specifications:
- The enclosure must be dry and draft-free.
- The enclosure must be large enough for the animal to turn around and lie down, but small enough to hold its body heat.
- The floor must be raised a few inches off the ground.
- You should cover the floor with clean blankets, wood shavings or straw for added warmth.
- Ensure the animal has unblocked access to food and water (make sure the water does not freeze!).
- Keep the enclosure turned away from the wind.
- Cover the door with heavy plastic or burlap.
Wisconsin’s winter weather can become down-right dangerous if we’re not careful. So, SERVPRO of East Brown County asks you to please protect yourself and ALL the members of your family this time of year!
Preparedness Profile: If Disaster Strikes, Will You Be Ready?
In our line of work we know disasters can strike at any time and they can often leave devastation behind.
So, in this week’s Preparedness Profile, we’re asking you this question: If Disaster Strikes, Will You Be Ready?”
We know it’s not always easy to answer ‘yes’ and mean it fully, but there are some easy steps you can follow to be as ready as possible:
- Sign up for local alerts – You can get often get text messages, emails or phone calls about emergencies from your city or county. You can also sign up for alerts or download smart phone apps from organizations like FEMA and the National Weather Service.
- Develop and test emergency plans – Know how your family will get out of the house in case of a fire or flood, know where your family will meet if you can’t go home, talk with neighbors about how you can work together. Run drills of all of these plans.
- Assemble emergency supplies – Have a kit ready with things like non-perishable food, water, medications and important documents.
- Know your local hazards – What are the risks where you live? How can you prepare for those specific risks? For example, in Wisconsin we experience natural disasters like blizzards, tornadoes and floods. How would you react in each of those unique situations?
- Collect and safeguard critical documents – Have copies of documents like birth certificates, passports, car titles and house deeds in a safe location, out of harm’s way. Know where they are so you can grab them and go at a moment’s notice.
- Protect your property – Take photos of your property and valuables for insurance purposes, make any necessary improvements to your property to make it safer in case of disaster and make sure you have all the insurance coverage you need.
At SERVPRO of East Brown County our business is helping people recover after disasters of all kinds from storms, to fires, to floods. We want you to stay safe and protect your family and property.
If the worst happens and you need our help in the wake of any emergency, remember we are a locally-owned business with the backing of a billion-dollar brand. There are 1,700 SERVPRO franchises and they are ready to assist us and you, should the need ever be that great.
Be safe. Be prepared.
And know you can get in touch with us, day or night, at 920-499-7050.
Hard Rain Means Hard Work
A photo of flooding at just one business our team has been working at through the rain.
If you live or work in Northeast Wisconsin, you’ve no doubt been affected in some way by the recent, intense rain storms we’ve been experiencing. Whether it’s a slow commute due to flooded streets, or worse, flooding in your own home or business, it’s been a difficult few weeks for everyone in the Green Bay area.
It’s no surprise that, in our line of work, the SERVPRO of East Brown County Team has been faced with a lot of hard work thanks to the extreme weather.
We have received numerous calls each day since the end of August from people across the area asking for help with flooding in homes and businesses. Our technicians have been working around the clock to help those who need it. While many enjoyed end of summer barbecues and parties over the Labor Day weekend, we had crews drying up flood waters without a day of rest.
The schedule became so hectic at times that even the office workers AND the franchise owners have been working alongside technicians to get the jobs done. At those times, the only person left in the office was our office manager who stayed behind to answer the never-ending calls and solve the maze of scheduling issues.
At one point we had to request additional drying equipment, like fans, from out of state to keep up with the demand. This is due to the fact all of Wisconsin has been experiencing flooding, with southern parts of the state even worse off than our own.
And even with all this labor, we have a waiting list of people who still need help. Believe us, if you are on that list we have not forgotten about you. We are doing our very best to ensure we can assist as many people as possible, as quickly as possible, without sacrificing any of the quality of our work.
We know that as hard as our crews are working, the emotional and physical toll this devastation has taken on our clients is even harder to deal with. We want those who are struggling right know to know that we are here for you. We will do our very best to see you through this extremely difficult time and get your life and property back to normal again.
We are not sharing this story to complain about the job our team needs to do right now, because our team doesn’t complain. We tackle each project in front of us until it is complete, because we love the work we do. We love helping people who need it. We’re in the business of being there for you when you need us most.
Pet Evacuations: What You Need to Know
We recently wrote a blog post about keeping your pets safe in case of house fires. In this post we’re taking a look at what you need to know and how you can prepare in the event you and your pets need to evacuate your home.
There are many reasons you might need to evacuate your home including fires, floods and storms.
If you must leave and go to a shelter it’s important to understand, you most likely will not be able to bring pets with you to a public shelter. There are usually separate shelters set up for pets.
Regardless, it’s a good idea to prepare an emergency evacuation kit for your pets in case you need to leave your home quickly.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has a list of items you will want to include in your pet’s evacuation kit:
- Copies of Vaccination Records
- Medication or a List of Needed Medications
- Lists of Any Special Needs or Allergies
- Ownership Records (things like adoption paperwork, microchip paperwork registration papers, or at least photos of you with your pets)
- Leashes, Harnesses, Collars and/or Carriers
- Pet Food and Treats (enough for each pet for 3 to 7 days)
- Water (enough for each pet for 3 to 7 days)
- Cat Litter and Box
- Dog Waste Bags
- A Pet First Aid Kit (including cotton bandage rolls, bandage tape, scissors, antibiotic ointment, medical-type gloves, isopropyl alcohol and saline solution)
- Cleaning Supplies (in case your pet has an accident)
- List of Important Phone Numbers (including your veterinarian, local animal shelters, local pet-friendly hotels, local animal control, local pet boarders)
The NFPA advises keeping all of this in a large, waterproof, plastic tote in a convenient place. You’ll want a spot that stays at a stable temperature to prevent food and water from freezing or spoiling.
The NFPA says you should also keep track of any possible natural disaster predictions in your area and ensure you know where your pets are in case disaster strikes and you need to leave fast.
At SERVPRO of East Brown County, our pets are our family and we know it’s the same for many families in the Green Bay Area. Be sure to plan ahead to keep those four-legged family members safe!
Explaining the ERP: Emergency Readiness Profile
It’s estimated 50% of businesses that are hit with a disaster never reopen. And you can never predict when or where a disaster will strike. That’s why preparing for the worst can be such a valuable step to take.
One of the services our marketing team provides can help you prepare your business for the worst. That service is called an “Emergency Readiness Profile, or ERP.” It’s FREE and doesn’t take much of your time.
The goal of the ERP is to compile a long list of information that you will need following a disaster like, let’s say, a tornado that damages your business and causes flooding. The information compiled includes emergency phone numbers to call, locations in the building to turn off (or on) water and electrical supplies and steps to take to start cleaning up the damage. The profile also includes photos that go along with the information showing exact locations of things like entrances and exits, locations of water and electrical shut offs and any security codes.
SERVPRO’s marketing team members will walk through your business with you to perform the ERP free of charge. It takes just an hour or two of your time.
Once the ERP is complete, SERVPRO will be able to provide you with digital copies (via email or flash drive), as well as a hard copy. This way it will be accessible the moment you need it.
The idea behind the ERP is that it will jumpstart the cleanup and recovery process so that business downtown is at the bare minimum. (SERVPRO’s contact information will also be in there so we can get to the scene ASAP, should the damage require our services!) The goal of the ERP is to ensure YOUR business is in the 50% that DO reopen should the worst happen.
If you’re interested in an ERP, please give SERVPRO of East Brown County a call at 920-499-7050!
Putting it All Back Together Again
This photo is a look at the office once we took the floorboards up, before everything was completely dry.
In Mid-April the Green Bay area was hit by a blizzard. The storm left about two feet of snow all over.
This led to many calls to SERVPRO of East Brown County for issues like broken sump pumps and water damage. However, one call was particularly interesting.
A commercial property was stuck with that wet, heavy snow on its roof. The challenge of holding that weight was too much for the roof and a section collapsed. That collapse caused a broken sprinkler head. Those combined led to water all over the building, including the office.
SERVPRO of East Brown County came in to take care of that water.
Our crews removed everything from the office: we took down cubicles and removed floorboards. Then the team brought in equipment, like our fans and dehumidifiers, and got everything dry. We also got rid of any debris from the incident.
After the drying process was done, we put everything back together again. That required rebuilding the office from, almost, the ground up. That entailed replacing the floorboards, putting the cubicles back together and moving all of the furniture and other equipment back in.
Once we were done the office was as good as new once more.
The entire process took only days. We were called in Monday morning for the water damage and everything was back in place by Friday afternoon.
This story is just one example of how SERVPRO of East Brown County works in an efficient, fast and professional manner. Our goal is to get your business, or home, back in order quickly and at the lowest cost with the best work possible.
For any type of water, fire, mold, storm, biohazard or crime scene clean up and/or restoration we are here for you. Reach us any time at 920-499-7050.
First Comes the Blizzard, Then Comes the Flood
Be sure to clear snow away from your property's foundation to try to prevent water from getting in as the snow melts.
As you travel around Northeast Wisconsin it’s impossible to miss the snow piles and drifts climbing several feet high. Thanks to a spring blizzard, communities across the area are dealing with the aftermath of about two feet of the pesky precipitation.
For the first few days, clearing snow from driveways and sidewalks has taken up most home and business owners’ time and concerns. However, with warmer temperatures in the forecast, the piles of snow will soon be turning into puddles, LARGE, FLOWING puddles of water.
If you’re concerned about the snow or the water damaging your property, SERVPRO has some advice to try in the coming days:
- Prevent roof collapse: use a snow rake to clear your roof or hire a professional to shovel it.
- Prevent ice dams: keep your attic cool, significantly cooler than the rest of your home, to ensure the roof stays cool.
- Clear snow: shovel snow away from your foundation, sweep snow away from doors and windows.
- Clear drains: unclog snow from drainage pipes and catch basins to ensure water can flow freely away from your property.
- Check your sump pump to be sure it’s working properly.
- Rearrange basement storage: clear areas around appliances, put anything valuable or that cannot get wet up off the ground.
SERVPRO of East Brown County has been busy this week responding to homes and businesses that have experienced damage thanks to the blizzard. Our team is ready to help you too if you experience any kind of collapse or water damage from the storm or the flood that is likely to follow. You can reach us 24 hours a day at 920-499-7050.
Getting Serious About Severe Weather
A CDC graphic with reminders to prepare and stay safe for severe weather.
The term “severe weather” covers a whole lot of activity that can affect people across the country on any given day, at any given time.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Americans deal with thousands of these weather events yearly.
Here’s a quick look at some of NOAA’s numbers for an average year:
- 10,000 severe thunderstorms
- 5,000 floods or flash floods
- 1,300 tornadoes
- 2 land-falling, deadly hurricanes
- Approximately 98% of all Presidentially-declared disasters are weather-related
- 650 deaths
- $15 billion in damage
To be prepared for severe weather, it helps to first know the hazards that can affect you, your family and your property.
In the Green Bay area, the National Weather Service (NWS) says we’re at risk for severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, flooding and, of course, winter storms. You’ve probably experienced a few of these in your time here (we know we have!).
At SERVPRO we recommend being prepared for the worst as we head into the warmest months of the year. According to the NWS, we’re much more likely to see those severe thunderstorms, floods and tornadoes during the spring and summer (although they can strike any time!).
To prepare we advise getting a NOAA weather radio and taking a look at the FEMA app, which we discussed in a previous blog post. That way you can hear about any watches or warnings headed your way and make sure to seek safe shelter.
It’s also a good time to come up with an emergency plan for your family and your business, put together or buy an emergency kit and keep important papers and valuables in a safe place.
SERVPRO also advises that you spread the word to your friends and family once you have your own plans in place. Post on your social media accounts, like Facebook and Twitter, that you have plans for staying safe during severe weather. Your good example could lead others to do the same.
If storms or floods come your way, remember SERVPRO of East Brown County can always help you out in the aftermath. We are here for your storm and water damage recovery needs. Just pick up the phone and dial 920-499-7050.
Just please be sure to take care of yourself and your family first.
Illuminating: Lightning Safety
A photo showing a lightning strike from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Did you know lightning strikes occur in the United States about 25 million times each year?
That statistic is according to the National Weather Service, or NWS, and is especially important to think about this time of year. According to the NWS, lightning is more likely to strike during the summer months, although it can happen any time of year.
The NWS says about 47 people, on average, are killed by lightning strikes, with hundreds more being injured.
Fortunately, there are ways to keep yourself safe.
If you’re able, the first piece of advice is to find shelter, preferably inside your own home.
If you are at home, the National Weather Service has several tips to stay safe:
- Stay off corded phones (you CAN use cell phones).
- Avoid plumbing: do not take a shower or wash your hands.
- Stay away from windows and doors.
- Do not lie on concrete floors or lean against concrete walls.
- Bring your pets inside.
- Remember that typical surge protectors will NOT protect against surges caused by lightning strikes.
If you are unable to get to shelter, the NWS advises you take these steps:
- Avoid open fields and hilltops.
- Stay away from tall, isolated trees or objects
- Stay away from water.
- Try to get into a low-lying area or keep heading toward shelter.
- If you’re in a group, spread out to avoid a strike hitting multiple people.
Lightning is hotter than the surface of the sun, reaching temperatures of around 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
And that hot, hot heat CAN cause fires. About 24,600 fires are caused by lightning in the United States each year, according to the NWS. Of those, about 4,400 are house fires.
In our line of work at SERVPRO of East Brown County we know just how much damage house fires can do. They can be devastating for families.
It’s unfortunate we know the damage, but luckily, we also know how to fix a lot of that damage. Our crews have the knowledge and experience to help you recover if the unthinkable happens. Just give us a call at 920-499-7050.
And always remember, despite the old saying, lightning can and often DOES strike the same place twice.
Preparing for the Worst: the FEMA App
A photo of the app from FEMA, showing what the front page looks like and features it has to offer.
Spring has officially sprung (although some days the weather doesn’t quite feel that way!) and once spring has arrived, severe weather is often just around the corner. Are you prepared?
One tool we like at SERVPRO of East Brown County is the FEMA app. The cell phone app is free for iOS and Android devices and comes with a lot of cool features to help keep you safe in any kind of disaster.
The first feature provides weather alerts. You can input up to five different locations in the app to keep track of any alerts for severe weather watches or warnings in those areas.
The app also helps you get ready in the event a disaster should strike. It provides emergency safety tips and reminders, gives a checklist for building an emergency kit and allows you to set up an emergency meeting place with your loved ones.
Under the safety tips feature there is a laundry list of different topics the app provides information for. Just a few of those examples are tornadoes, house fires, floods and even cyber security.
If you end up experiencing a disaster, the app has more features that allow you to apply for assistance online, find a shelter and talk directly to someone at an area disaster recovery center.
The app also gives you the ability to share any disaster photos you might take, connect to FEMA’s Blog and call 911. The photos you share can help first responders and emergency managers in their recovery efforts.
With spring and summer often bringing severe weather, it certainly can’t hurt to be prepared and have prior warnings.
And while we’re on the subject of warnings, what’s the difference between a storm watch and a storm warning?
According to the National Weather Service, a severe thunderstorm or tornado WATCH is put out when there is a POSSIBILITY of a severe thunderstorm or tornado in that area. The WATCH does not mean the storms will actually happen.
The National Weather Service says a severe thunderstorm or tornado WARNING is put out when severe storms are actually occurring in that area, or tornadoes are imminent.
And if a disaster should strike, affecting your property. Remember, SERVPRO of East Brown County can help in the recovery efforts. We can repair storm damage and remediate any flooding or fire damage that might result. Call us anytime day or night at 920-499-7050.
Are You Prepared for a Power Outage in Green Bay?
When storms cause power outages and damage in your home or business, it pays to be prepared and have a plan in place.
Emergency Ready Kit
You may need to survive on your own after an emergency. This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours or it might take days. Depending on the nature of the disaster road conditions may prevent help from arriving in a timely manner.
Additionally, basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment and telephones may be cut off for days or even a week, or longer. Your supplies kit should contain items to help you manage during these outages. If the power goes out keep your pipes from freezing by shutting off the valve that allows water to come into your home. Then, open any drain valves and all faucets and let them run until the pipes are empty (it's helpful to identify these valves in advance). Next, flush all toilets and pour denatured alcohol into toilets and sinks to prevent water in the traps from freezing. Do NOT use automotive antifreeze in case there's trouble with your water system; you don't want the antifreeze to contaminate your drinking water. You may, however, use nontoxic antifreeze that's made for winterizing motor homes.
Be prepared for a power outage by keeping necessary items centrally located in your home. Take the time to ensure that everyone in your family is aware of the "kit." Periodically check your kit to see that batteries operate properly. The following is a list of items that are suggested to keep on hand:
1. Flashlights for each family member
2. Battery-operated radio and clock
3. Extra batteries
4. Containers of bottled water
5. Canned, freeze-dried or dehydrated food, powdered milk, baby supplies for infants
6. Non-electric can opener
7. List of important phone numbers
8. First-aid kit
Following a disaster, there may be power outages that could last for several days. Stock canned foods, dry mixes and other staples that do not require refrigeration, cooking, water or special preparation. Be sure to include a manual can opener and eating utensils. The following items are suggested when selecting emergency food supplies. You may already have many of these on hand.
•Store at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food.
•Choose foods your family will eat.
•Remember any special dietary needs.
•Avoid foods that will make you thirsty.
•Choose salt-free crackers, whole grain cereals and canned foods with high liquid content.
•Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables and a can opener
•Protein or fruit bars
•Dry cereal or granola
•Non-perishable pasteurized milk
•High energy foods
•Food for infants
These and many other helpful tips are available at www.ready.gov. When storm weather strikes the Green Bay area, knowing what to do until SERVPRO of West Brown County arrives will make a difference. Call us directly at 920-499-7050 and we will take good care of you.
When Storms or Floods hit Green Bay Area, SERVPRO is READY!
SERVPRO is here to help with Clean Up and Disasters in Green Bay and surrounding areas
SERVPRO of East and West Brown County specializes in storm and flood damage restoration. Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.
Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.
Resources to Handle Floods and Storms
When storms hit Green Bay and surrounding areas, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.
Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 920-434-8224
SERVPRO Responds to Numerous Victims of Tornado in Area
This house was affected by the tornado that rolled through the area. SERVPRO of East/West Brown County helped get the property back in shape.
On August 6th, 2013, several confirmed tornadoes ripped through the area. SERVPRO of EAST/West Brown County responded to numerous victims of the storm in Little Chute and Mishicot Wisconsin. Windows and roofs were damaged which allowed rain water to enter the structures. SERVPRO removed damaged building materials, wet insulation in attics, extracted water, and dried structures throughout the area.