Recent Fire Damage Posts

3 Cooking Tips To Reduce Fire Hazards

11/8/2021 (Permalink)

Microwave Fire This home had a fire loss that started in the microwave and spread from there. SERVPRO responded quickly and repaired all the damages.

3 Fire-Resistant Cooking Techniques

It is not difficult to prevent kitchen fires, but awareness and attention are necessary. Here are three fire damage prevention tips to avoid a grease fire.

1. Use Grease Safely

Grease fires are very hot and can cause extensive damage in a kitchen. Heat any cooking oil or grease slowly to a safe temperature and exercise caution when adding food. Remove as much moisture from food as possible before cooking in fat, and never cook frozen food in hot grease. Keep a Class K extinguisher between the kitchen and the nearest exit. Baking soda and salt can cause a chemical reaction that can put out grease fires, or you may be able to smother a fire with a cookie sheet or metal pot lid.

2. Monitor Cooking Food

A key safety tip is to remain in the kitchen to monitor food while it is cooking. This will ensure that you see and smell smoke and can suppress a fire as soon as it starts. If you do need to leave the room, set a timer that will remind you to check on food and prevent it from getting burned or starting a fire.

3. Organize the Kitchen

A kitchen should be organized with basic fire safety in mind. Avoid storing cooking utensils, oven mitts, or pot holders anywhere near the stove. It is also a good idea not to hang curtains or leave towels or other combustible textiles close to heating elements.

These tips can significantly reduce the risk that a grease fire will start in the kitchen of your home in West Orange, NJ. If a fire does break out, do everything you can to suppress it without compromising your safety. You may want to call firefighters to ensure that the fire is extinguished and poses no further danger. A residential fire damage mitigation and restoration service can fix any damage to your home.

5 Guidelines for Avoiding Cigarette Fires at Home

7/27/2021 (Permalink)

Lit cigarette held by a woman's hand. Those who use medical oxygen or those who store it should keep lit cigarettes away from them.

5 Tips For Preventing Home Cigarette Fires

Smoking poses a threat to your home in Verona, NJ when you have improper habits. Following these five guidelines will protect you from any potential cigarette fire.

1. Use an Appropriate Container

An ashtray with a wide base or bucket full of sand should be around in areas where you typically smoke. When using an ashtray, it should be stable on a surface to prevent accidental knockdowns. Keeping it stable prevents it from spilling and starting an ashtray fire from a still smoldering cigarette.

If possible, the container should also be kept away from any building to add distance between the flame remnant and all flammable structures.

2. Completely Put Out Cigarettes

When you are finished smoking, it’s advised to add water to the ashes and cigarette butt to completely remove the fire and its risks. If you ever have to step away or need to stop smoking, you should put out your cigarette to avoid leaving a lit one unattended.

3. Smoke Only When Fully Awake

If you are taking medicine that makes you drowsy or are sleep deprived, it is best to avoid smoking. If you pass out while smoking, you will likely drop your cigarette. Since you are asleep, you will also have a harder time escaping or stopping any growing cigarette fire. Smoking while sleepy puts your home at risk.

4. Only Smoke Outside Your Home

There is a sizable difference in the number of flammable objects when comparing a typical indoor and outdoor environment. Your furniture, curtains, trash bin, mattress and bedding can all be ignited by a loose cigarette. It is much safer to smoke outside and remain there until you are finished.

5. Avoid Smoking Around Oxygen Tanks

Oxygen is very sensitive to fire. Lit cigarettes should be kept away from anyone using medical oxygen or places where it’s stored.

3 Products You Should Always Throw Away After a Fire

6/29/2021 (Permalink)

Colorful pills and medicines in the hand Medicine relies on chemical reactions to accomplish the desired effects in the human body.

What To Throw Out After A Fire

When you’re cleaning up after a fire in your home in Glen Ridge, NJ, it’s only natural that you’d want to save as many of your surviving belongings as possible. After all, this can help cut down on the costs of refurbishing your home once the fire cleanup crews leave, and ensure you’re not wasting anything, right? While this is correct, there are a few products you’ll want to throw away after a fire. These include

  • Food
  • Medicine
  • Cosmetics

1. Food

Just because food isn’t expired or burned doesn’t make it okay to ingest. Often, porous foods such as bread, potatoes and various types of fruits absorb soot, smoke and harmful chemicals from the air during a fire. This means that when you eat these foods later on, you’re also taking in the harmful compounds they’ve absorbed. Furthermore, meat quickly goes bad in high temperatures and should be discarded immediately to prevent food poisoning.

2. Medicine

Medicine relies on chemical reactions to accomplish the desired effects in the human body. However, warning labels often indicate that these products should be kept in cool, dry places for good reason. High heat can cause the chemicals in medications of all types to react and change. Ingesting these meds later can cause serious harm in some cases, so it’s best to throw them away after a fire.

3. Cosmetics

Much like medication, cosmetics use chemicals to do their job. Again, the intense heat has the potential to cause a different type of fire damage to makeup and other cosmetics, changing their chemical compounds into a potentially more harmful version. Throw away any makeup that’s been near a high-heat fire.

The decision to throw away these belongings might not be an easy one at the moment, but it’s the best way to avoid further damages to your family and health after you’ve dealt with the flames themselves. Cleanup crews can often offer more information on other products that should be tossed out in the aftermath.

How Can I Prevent a Lint Fire?

4/1/2021 (Permalink)

utility room, dryer and clothing on a room By maintaining your dryer you can prevent a lint fire in your home.

Ways To Prevent A House Fire

Lint fires are common occurrences in Glen Ridge, NJ, and cause heavy fire damage leading to costly repairs. You can prevent a house fire by keeping flammable substances away from your home.
To prepare in case of a fire:

  • Have a fire plan in place
  • Keep a fire extinguisher easily accessible
  • Create a list of emergency contacts

Lint from dryers is often used in campsites to light the campfire because of how highly combustible it is. Here are some ways you can prevent a dryer fire.

3. Properly Clean Your Dryer
Experts recommend that you hire a professional to service your dryer at least once a year. You can also take steps throughout the year to clean around your dryer and prevent accumulating lint. Check behind the dryer to ensure no lint is hidden.

2. Clean the Lint Filter Housing
The dryer filter is the most obvious place where lint accumulates. Its housing can also become filled with lint if it is not cleaned regularly. When you lift the filter from its housing, you will often find the lint trapped under it. This buildup can easily start a lint fire inside of the dryer. It is best to use a small brush inside the housing to reveal any hidden lint and use a vacuum to remove it.

3. Notice the Signs
When your dryer begins to function abnormally, it can be an indication that your dryer vents are clogged. Knowing the signs of a malfunctioning appliance can prevent a dryer fire. If you notice that the dryer is no longer drying effectively or your clothes are coming out hotter than usual, contact a professional to clean your vents before purchasing a new one.
A lint fire is preventable in your home if you take the appropriate steps to maintain your dryer. If you have experienced a dryer fire, contact your local fire damage restoration service to help get your property back to normal.

3 Steps for Avoiding a Dryer Fire

2/3/2021 (Permalink)

Hand removing lint from dryer filter in West Orange, NJ The lint filter should be cleaned before and after every load of laundry.

Steps Recommended By the USFA

One common cause of home fires is the clothes dryer. The United States Fire Administration includes some startling statistics in their information about fire safety at home, specifically regarding a lint fire situation.

  • 2,900 home fires due to clothes dryers are reported every year.
  • Failure to clean the dryer, including the lint trap and hose behind the dryer, is the leading cause of these fires.
  • The rate of these fires increases during the fall and winter months.

You can avoid a clothes dryer fire with steps recommended by the USFA.

1. Hire a Professional To Install and Service Your Dryer

A home appliance professional will choose the correct electrical outlet and plug for your home and your appliances. They may also recognize potential risks, such as old wiring or outdated construction. You should also be sure to read through the manufacturer warnings and instructions before you operate the dryer.

2. Clean the Dryer Regularly

The lint filter should be cleaned before and after every load of laundry. The vent pipe should be cleaned out every three months. You should also clean the dryer itself once every six months at least. This may involve vacuuming out the interior of the appliance, scrubbing down the interior sides with a nylon bristled brush, and rinsing off the lint trap. Cleaning out the dryer and keeping it free of debris is one of the top steps you can take to avoid a lint fire. If you notice the dryer cycle takes longer than normal, hire a professional to inspect and clean the appliance before risking a dryer fire.

3. Perform Consistent Maintenance

Regularly inspect the vent system directly behind the dryer, watching for damages or restrictions. Cover the outside dampers to prevent dirt, rain, or snow from clogging the vents. However, you need to make sure the covers open when the vent is in use.

Carefully following these three steps can keep you and your home safe from a lint fire. Contact fire damage and remediation professionals in your West Orange, NJ, to get more tips.

3 Essential Techniques for Escaping Fires To Teach Your Kids

12/29/2020 (Permalink)

Rear view of a Caucasian firefighter wearing a fire helmet over his head and teaching about fire extinguisher to school kids If you keep your child informed, your lives can go back to normal in no time

Kids Safety Strategies

Going through a home fire in West Orange, NJ, is an undeniably harrowing experience. It can be even scarier if there are children involved. To preemptively avoid any tragedies, it's essential that your children know how to get out of the house. When teaching kids safety strategies, remember to explain these three rules for escaping fires.

1. Testing Doors

One of the most potentially hazardous parts of a fire escape is leaving a room. If there is a fire in an adjacent room, opening a door that leads into it could result in an outward explosion. Therefore, checking doors is an essential point to teach a child. Tell your kids to test the temperature of the doorknob. To prevent getting burned, these are a few items young ones can use:

  • A towel
  • A piece of fabric
  • The back of one hand

If the handle feels hot, your kids should know to find another exit. Try to plan two other ways out of your children's bedrooms and other common rooms.

2. Stop, Drop, and Roll

This method is taught in schools for a reason. If your kids' clothes catch on fire, they should know to immediately fall down and roll. This can be confusing for many young ones to understand, so try to practice it regularly to ensure kids' safety.

3. Rolling Out of Bed

Hot air rises, so to avoid burns from the scorching heat during a house fire, teaching the bedroll technique is vital. Tell the young ones to roll onto the stomach and crawl to the floor from there. At this point, your kids should know to continue crawling until safety is reached, avoiding extremely hot spaces.
While a house fire is often terrifying, the damage can be dealt with by a fire restoration company. If you keep your child informed, your lives can go back to normal in no time. Stay strong and keep kids' safety intact by remembering these key instructions.

How a Fire in the Workplace Can Affect Your Business

11/8/2020 (Permalink)

Big fire in a stairway, in a building in Montclair, NJ Office fire in Montclair, NJ

In the everyday affairs of your business, you probably worry about things other than disasters and emergencies. However, these types of incidents can have devastating effects on your company. You should be prepared to prevent and respond to events such as floods and fires. One of the best ways to mitigate loss and help stabilize your company's finances when you can't continue daily operations is to purchase interruption insurance. This coverage can be critical in keeping your business afloat during difficult times.

The Consequences of an Office Fire

Even a small fire in your Montclair, NJ building can cause severe damage. You may also see business interruption to production changes with employees' work. Aside from injuries and harm a fire could do, you need to be aware of the following effects:

  • Loss of pertinent equipment such as computers, servers, and other production tools.
  • Destruction of building materials, making the facility unsafe for work.
  • Long-term health effects from the smoke.

Loss of Revenue

Your first concern during and after a fire should be for the welfare of your staff. Mae everyone gets the proper medical attention they need after this incident. You will then turn your thoughts to how the fire will affect the bottom line of your company. Even shutting down for a single day could put you thousands, tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands of dollars behind, depending on the nature of your work and the size of your organization and customer base. If major fire restoration is necessary, and you have to close your office for weeks while professional fire and smoke cleanup crews address repair needs, it may be difficult to recover financially from lost income.

Insurance to the Rescue

Interruption insurance will reimburse you for the costs of having to close your office due to a disaster such as a fire. This includes any revenue you lose and will lose because you cannot operate your company. The coverage can also pay for relocation costs.
Purchasing business interruption insurance can spare you a lot of stress and grief in the future. You can have peace of mind even during the most dire emergencies.

4 Tips for Making the Perfect Fire Escape Plan

9/23/2020 (Permalink)

Exit route The best time to plan your evacuation route is now!

Fire Preparation Plan

When it comes to your family, safety is paramount. Because you never know when a fire might occur in Glen Ridge, NJ, it is always best to have a solid fire escape plan at the ready. Depending on the size and ages of your family members, you may need to add in particular elements that will ensure everyone's safety. Here are five great tips for making your fire preparation plan the perfect one for your needs:

1. Find at Least Two Exit Routes
Work with each member of your family to help them understand that the most important thing they can do in the case of a fire is to get out. No matter where they are in the house, they should be able to identify two different ways to get outside. Windows are an option as well, so be sure to explain (and practice) the process of using them to escape.

2. Choose a Meeting Place Outside
Designate a safe place outside of the home as an area for family members to meet in the case of a home fire. This could be a curb side, a mailbox, or even a neighbor's house. Help your family know exactly where to go, even if they don't have anyone else with them during an emergency.

3. Practice "Stop, Drop and Roll"
An important piece of every fire escape plan is knowing what to do if the fire gets too close. If a family member's clothing catches on fire, their immediate reaction should be to "stop, drop and roll." Practice this with every family member to help them be prepared.

4. Keep Doors Closed
A closed door can actually help prevent smoke and fire spreading more quickly. Where possible, keep doors closed while people are sleeping.
Being prepared is the best thing you can do for your family. In addition to a great fire escape plan, it is also important to have the contact information of a trusted restoration company to make sure your home is taken care of after any emergency.

How To Ensure a Fire Sprinkler System Is in Good Shape

7/12/2020 (Permalink)

Factory roof structure and automatic fire protection in building system. A fire sprinkler system is a vital piece of fire prevention for your company

A fire sprinkler system is a vital piece of fire prevention for your company. The goal of a sprinkler system is to save lives from fire and to reduce property loss. As with most modern technology, sprinklers are finely calibrated and engineered mechanisms. They activate when sensors detect heat or smoke. Water-based systems then spray water onto the incipient fire and, if all goes well, douse the flames. For the system to work properly, all of its many components need to be in good shape and operational. The NFPA 25 document provides the standards for the maintenance and inspection of fire sprinkler systems, fire pumps, and standpipe systems.

Quality Fire Suppression

Few devices offer better fire protection than a sprinkler system installed in your company in Glen Ridge, NJ. They must be designed, installed, and maintained to a high standard. An inspection should be conducted at regular intervals by knowledgeable personnel and should include the following components:

  • Gauges
  • Pipes and fittings
  • Sprinkler heads
  • Valves
  • Connections
  • Switches

Equipment should also be tested on a regular basis. If any irregularities are found, they should be fixed or the component should be replaced. Inspections and tests are also a good time to repair any errors from the installation process. A quality maintenance program ensures the integrity of the system and makes sure it will work as intended in an emergency.

Professional Fire Mitigation
Even a brief fire in your building can produce significant damage. A local fire remediation company can arrive on your property in less than four hours and begin the restoration process. If the sprinkler system went off, the technicians will begin a fire sprinkler cleanup. This involves removing the water from the building and drying out the property and the contents. If the fire sprinkler system worked as intended, the building is likely to have suffered very little fire damage. However, smoke and soot damage may still need to be cleaned up.

Tips to Keeping Your Smoke Alarm Functioning Properly

6/2/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke alarm Among the most important features in your home, your smoke alarm is high on the list

Factors To Know About Smoke Alarms

Among the most important features in your home, your smoke alarm is high on the list. This device can be a lifesaver in the event of a fire. You should never disarm your alarms. Also, if your home doesn't currently have working alarms, make sure you install some immediately. Regular maintenance and care of these warning systems are critical. Failure to do this can lead to disaster or even death. There are a few important factors to know about smoke alarms.

Where To Put Them

Proper placement of each fire alarm will help protect you and your loved ones from harm. When you have alarms in the right places, you can be alerted to danger regardless of where a fire may have started in your Upper Montclair, NJ, house. Your alarms should be in the following places:

  • On each level of your home
  • In every bedroom of the home
  • In the hallway outside each bedroom and common area of the house (living room, kitchen, laundry room)

Changing the Batteries

Though digital alarms are available, many homeowners detect fire damage with battery-powered smoke alarms. It's easy to forget about changing the batteries, but if you can get on a regular schedule, you can make sure the alarms are working well. Change the batteries at least once a year. You may also know it's time if your alarms are chirping. Some also have an indicator light showing that the batteries are dead.

Replacing the Alarms

You may not be able to avoid smoke damage if a fire starts in your home. However, the alarms detect smoke, you can have time to safely exit your home and alert the fire department. Older, worn-out alarms may not work efficiently, so it's best to replace the alarms every 10 years.
Though you can salvage much of your home with the help of a professional fire cleanup company, you'd rather have a reliable fire alarm alert you in time to prevent catastrophic damage.