Recent Fire Damage Posts

Christmas Tree Fire Safety Tips

12/18/2019 (Permalink)

Christmas is around the corner, and you know what that means: fire safety. Each year, fire departments respond to an average of 210 structure fires caused by Christmas trees. Carefully decorating Christmas trees will make the holidays safer.

Here are some great Fire Prevention tips:

  • Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched.
  • Make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source, such as fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights.
  • Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.
  • Add water to the tree stand daily.
  • Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use, but not both make sure you choose the right ones.
  • Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.
  • Always turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving home or going to bed.
  • Get rid of the tree when it begins dropping needles. Dried-out trees are a fire danger and should not be left in the home or garage, or placed outside against the home.

There are so many other ways to prevent fire, around Christmas time, but these are a few of the common mistakes. We hope that you do not ever experience a fire.

We know how devastating fire damage can be, but we are here to help! Call SERVPRO of Milwaukee North (262)250-1101  to help get your home restored efficiently.

Christmas Tree Fire Safety Tips

12/18/2019 (Permalink)

Christmas is around the corner, and you know what that means: fire safety. Each year, fire departments respond to an average of 210 structure fires caused by Christmas trees. Carefully decorating Christmas trees will make the holidays safer.

Here are some great Fire Prevention tips:

  • Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched.
  • Make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source, such as fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights.
  • Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.
  • Add water to the tree stand daily.
  • Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use, but not both make sure you choose the right ones.
  • Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.
  • Always turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving home or going to bed.
  • Get rid of the tree when it begins dropping needles. Dried-out trees are a fire danger and should not be left in the home or garage, or placed outside against the home.

There are so many other ways to prevent fire, around Christmas time, but these are a few of the common mistakes. We hope that you do not ever experience a fire.

We know how devastating fire damage can be, but we are here to help! Call SERVPRO of Milwaukee North (262)250-1101  to help get your home restored efficiently.

Christmas Tree Fire Safety Tips

12/18/2019 (Permalink)

Christmas is around the corner, and you know what that means: fire safety. Each year, fire departments respond to an average of 210 structure fires caused by Christmas trees. Carefully decorating Christmas trees will make the holidays safer.

Here are some great Fire Prevention tips:

  • Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that do not fall off when touched.
  • Make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source, such as fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights.
  • Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit.
  • Add water to the tree stand daily.
  • Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use, but not both make sure you choose the right ones.
  • Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.
  • Always turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving home or going to bed.
  • Get rid of the tree when it begins dropping needles. Dried-out trees are a fire danger and should not be left in the home or garage, or placed outside against the home.

There are so many other ways to prevent fire, around Christmas time, but these are a few of the common mistakes. We hope that you do not ever experience a fire.

We know how devastating fire damage can be, but we are here to help! Call SERVPRO of Milwaukee North (262)250-1101  to help get your home restored efficiently.

Smoke Detectors Save Lives!

11/26/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke alarms save lives and provide you and your family time to leave the home and get to safety or alert you to potential fires in the home like a cooking fire or an unattended candle. In the event of a home fire soot and smoke damage can cause damage throughout your home and require repairs and restoration. 

SERVPRO of Milwaukee North has the technicians, expertise, and experience to clean and restore your home to preloss condition. After a fire, our crew's inventory and pack out the contents in your home. Contents are then brought back to our secure, climate-controlled warehouse where items are recleaned and packed into new clean boxes. While contents are being cleaned, crews work to clean and restore your home. Once your home has been restored, all contents are packed back and your home is ready to be put back together as it was before the fire. 

Why SERVPRO Fire Damage Specialists Rely On Hydroxyl Generators When Restoring Homes In Milwaukee

11/26/2019 (Permalink)

During a house fire, firefighters douse the interior of the home with thousands of gallons of water. This water soaks into walls, floors, and your belongings. After they put the fire out and no signs of hot areas pose additional threats to reignite the fire, the fire department’s personnel return to the station. Their job never includes removing the water or foam soaking into your residence.

The presence of so much water is why SERVPRO uses specific machinery to mitigate fire damage from homes in Milwaukee & Waukesha Co. One of these choices involves our options regarding deodorizing equipment. Initial efforts to help make the air safer to breathe while we work on your home have the potential to bring about unexpected effects.

Ozone can cause permanent changes in the color of damp carpets, furniture, and other furnishings. Plants can also suffer drastically when ozone generators fill an area. We must wait until after one of our employees turns off the machine and then a bit longer to clear the air of ozone before we can enter the home. However, we do have a safer alternative with very few drawbacks.

We can safely use hydroxyl generators while we work, as well as in damp conditions. If you see us wearing masks or respirators as part of our personal protective equipment (PPE) while we work on mitigating the fire damage in your dwelling, this is because of the soot hanging in the air. Hydroxyl generators push hydrogen peroxide molecules into the air where they can interact with odor-causing particles at the molecular level.

The extra oxygen molecule turning plain water into hydrogen peroxide has a fragile bond with the water molecule, allowing the oxygen to form bonds with other substances. Our desiccant machines pull the water molecules produced by the breakdown of H2O2 as we remove the water hosed in during the fire. Ozone does not give us the flexibility to work as efficiently as hydroxyl generators provide.

SERVPRO of Milwaukee North wants to assure our customers that we always use the most efficient methods when mitigating fire damage. Call us at (262)250-1101, so we can restore your property, “Like it never even happened.”

Milwaukee Area Smoke and Soot Cleanup

10/8/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Milwaukee North will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (414) 354-7566

Thanksgiving Day Tips for Emergency Prevention

10/8/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know that Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires, followed by Christmas, and Christmas Eve? We want you to enjoy these days with your loved ones, so here are a few safety tips for when you are cooking that scrumptious meal.

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop so you can keep an eye on the food.
  • Stay in the home when cooking your turkey and check on it frequently.
  • Keep children away from the stove. The stove will be hot and kids should stay 3 feet away.
  • Make sure kids stay away from hot food and liquids. The steam or splash from vegetables, gravy or coffee could cause serious burns.
  • Keep the floor clear so you don’t trip over kids or toys.
  • Keep knives out of the reach of children.
  • Be sure electric cords from an electric knife, coffee maker, plate warmer or mixer are not dangling off the counter within easy reach of a child.
  • Keep matches and utility lighters out of the reach of children — up high in a locked cabinet.
  • Never leave children alone in room with a lit candle.
  • Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.

Be especially aware when Deep Frying a turkey, people tend to put too much oil in which causes overflow and spreads to the open flame causing a mass fireball. Also putting in a frozen or very wet bird can cause major problems which they call B.L.E.V.E which stands for Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion.

  • Always use fryer outside away from any structure
  • Keep oil under 350 degrees, the hotter the oil the more combustible it is
  • Don’t overfill the pot with oil
  • Thoroughly defrost turkey(24 hours for every 10 pounds the turkey weighs)
  • Turn off flame before putting turkey in
  • Keep grease fire approved extinguisher on hand
  • Lower turkey into pot slowly

If by unfortunate event you have an emergency this Holiday Season please know your SERVPRO of Milwaukee North is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, even on Holidays. Contact us if need be at (414)354-7566 and we will be there to help. Happy Holidays!

In-Home Fire Safety for the Milwaukee Area

10/4/2019 (Permalink)

Fall is quickly approaching! That means all of the fall activities are about to begin in Milwaukee, if they haven’t already! One popular item associated with the fall season is the candle. If a house smells like fall, it feels like home. SERVPRO of Milwaukee North knows that candle fires happen and even though candles are small, the damage of a residential fire by a candle can turn out to be larger than expected.

Here are some candle fire safety tips for the Milwaukee area:

  • When lighting a candle in the home, keep the candle at least twelve inches away from anything that can burn
  • Try to avoid keeping a lit candle in bedrooms, bathrooms or sleeping areas
  • Do not leave a lit candle where a child or family pet can access or reach it

One more important candle safety tip will tie to one of the above tips about not leaving a lit candle in the bathroom. When cleaning a bathroom using aerosol chemicals, this becomes extremely dangerous if there is a lit candle nearby. Aerosols are highly flammable and this can cause an explosion of sorts – please practice safety first and share this tip with friends and family who may not be aware of it.

If a Milwaukee home catches fire for any reason, including a candle, please call the trained professionals at SERVPRO of Milwaukee North so we can help clean up the fire mess and damage.

Link: https://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/media/pictographs/candles.html

Fire And Smoke Damage Restoration In WI

4/24/2019 (Permalink)

Grease Fire Damage in Milwaukee, WI

Fire And Smoke Damage

A fire disaster in Wisconsin can cause serious damage to your house. The resultant flames, smoke, heat, and even water can have permanent repercussions on the structure and many of your items. The contents that survive fire damage may sustain extensive smoke damage in exchange. The firefighters may also cut holes in the walls or roof when putting out the flames, leaving you with a massive cleanup job.

Time and patience are crucial when dealing with any form of fire damage in Milwaukee. Once the fire fighting crew leaves, SERVPRO can come in and initiate the restoration process. We have highly skilled, IICRC-trained technicians that are on standby in case of an emergency. Using special smoke cleanup and restoration techniques, we can restore your property to preloss conditions, "Like it never even happened."

When the fire calms down, the resultant smoke damage appears in the form of discolored walls, charred items, or soot and ash on the floor. In some cases, other side effects such as smells can remain behind, presenting health risks to the occupants. It is important to keep in mind that some signs of smoke damage can show almost immediately while others take several hours (sometimes days) after the event to manifest.

Within a few days of smoke and fire damage, walls and flooring may turn yellow (although this yellowing effect does not show right away). Warping and discoloration can also occur on wood and plastic surfaces/appliances. Metal hardware tends to rust and corrode away several hours after a fire. If you have tiles, counter tops, or any other surface with porous stone such as travertine, granite, or marble, the acidic residue in soot can cause them to discolor permanently.

Certain surfaces, especially fabric items, may show both visible signs of fire damage and smoke odor. Smoke releases tiny carbon particles into the air that, when deposited, are known as soot. The first step SERVPRO takes to reduce the smell of a fire is getting rid of this smoke deposit or soot.

In addition to these tiny particles, smoke also contains various components that contribute to the unbearable smell that lingers after fire damage. These include toxic gases and vapors. Vapors are misty droplets that can be poisonous upon absorption or inhalation. Toxic gases come in different forms. Carbon monoxide is the most common toxic gas in a fire disaster. Household products such as plastics, vinyl, and other materials containing chlorine produce phosgene during combustion. Carpets, synthetics, clothing, and carpets release hydrogen cyanide when burning.

The smell that follows smoke damage penetrates different materials after some time. Unless a professional fire damage restoration company cleans up and deodorizes these items properly, the smoky smell may remain for a long time. SERVPRO technicians can pinpoint the source of the odor and neutralize it accordingly.

Do not leave your property to fate when a fire disaster comes knocking. SERVPRO of Milwaukee North is a part of your community and can arrive promptly to reverse the fire damage. Call us anytime at (414) 354-7566!

Cigarette Fires

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

As a fire restoration company we have seen our share of fires and reasons for fires. So lets talk about cigarettes...

Cigarette fires cause close to 1,000 deaths and 3,000 injuries each year in the united states, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). That records just the death and injuries but what about loss of property...not just property but also nature as wildfires can be caused by cigarettes not disposed of properly especially during a drought.

In the cold  of winter many smokers go to their garage instead of outside.  How many chemicals do you store in your garage?  If you smoke just outside your garage where do you put the cigarette?

We know from experience the damage cigarettes can do, if you choose to do it, use caution as we would rather not have to come clean up your house from destruction contributed to a cigarette!

Smoke Alarm Safety

12/27/2017 (Permalink)

Smoke alarms play a vital role in saving lives, and when properly installed, can reduce the risk of fire injury in half.* The National Fire Protection Association

Smoke alarms work best when paired with a fire escape plan. A plan allows your family, employees or clients to escape quickly and safely in an emergency situation.  Business owners should consult the local Fire Marshal to ensure specific building fire codes and smoke detector requirements are met.

SMOKE ALARM SAFETY TIPS:

-Install smoke alarms on every level of the home, including the basement according to alarm instructions.  Larger homes may need more smoke alarms.

-Smoke alarms should be installed away from the kitchen and at least 10 feet away from a cooking appliance to prevent false alarms.

-Test smoke alarms at least once a month using the test button.

-Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps,” the battery is low and should be replaced right away.

-Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

*Tips and statistics provided by the National Fire Protection Association.

Fire Protection

12/27/2017 (Permalink)

In order for a fire to start it needs three things - Oxygen, Heat & Fuel.  If one is missing a fire cannot start!  In order to protect yourself, it is important to understand the basic characteristics of fire.
• Fire is FAST. In just two minutes, a fire can become life-threatening. In five minutes, a residence can be engulfed in flames.
• Fire is DARK. Fire produces gases that make you disoriented and drowsy. Instead of being awakened by a fire, you may fall into a deeper sleep. Asphyxiation is the leading cause of fire deaths, exceeding burns by a three- to- one ratio.
• Fire is HOT. Heat and smoke from fire can be more dangerous than the flames. Inhaling the superhot air can sear your lungs.

How do you protect yourself from fire?
• Plan 2 minute escape plan and practice it!
• Make sure smoke detectors work!!
• Avoid overloading extension cords.
• Have open and clearly marked exits.

Grilling Safety

7/3/2017 (Permalink)

Now that summer is in full swing, so is grilling season!  In order to prevent a trip to the emergency room, or a visit from SERVPRO of Milwaukee North for fire damage, please follow these helpful tips.

- All grills should be used outdoors away from the house, eaves, railings and overhanging branches.
- Keep the grill free of grease buildup and never leave it unattended.
- Kids and pets should be at least 3 feet away from the grill at all times.
- For gas grills check for leaks before it is used for the first time every year.
- If you smell gas when using a gas grill, immediately get away from the grill and call fire department.
- Use only charcoal starter fluid to start a charcoal grill.
- Let charcoal cool completely before disposing in a metal container.  When disposing make sure the area is inaccessible for children and pets.

Make sure all grilling memories are great memories, use caution when grilling!