Four Thanksgiving Fire Safety Tips
Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires.
As people look forward to their Thanksgiving feasts, fire safety is rarely their first concern. According to the National Fire Protection Association, Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires. As you begin plans for turkey and stuffing, be sure to keep these safety tips in mind to help prevent injury and property loss due to fire.
- Test the batteries in your smoke alarms. Press the test button on your units to make sure they work.
- Prevent fires by making sure your oven and stovetop are clean and free of grease and dust.
BE ATTENTIVE IN THE KITCHEN
In 2015, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated 1,760 home cooking fires on Thanksgiving. Unattended cooking was by far the leading contributing factor in cooking fires and fire deaths, and cooking equipment was involved in nearly half (48 percent) of all reported home fires.
- Stay in the kitchen when cooking on the stovetop and keep an eye on the food.
- Stay in the home when cooking your turkey as well, and check on it often.
- If you must step away from your cooking, set a kitchen timer so you don’t get distracted by guests.
- Keep children at least three feet away from the stove, oven, hot food and liquids. Steam or splash from vegetables, gravy, or coffee could cause serious burns.
- Keep items that can catch fire, such as oven mitts, wooden utensils, and towels, away from the cooking area.
- Make sure the floor is clear of tripping hazards such as children, toys, bags, or pets that could cause you to fall.
- Keep knives out of the reach of children.
- Turn pot and pan handles inward and away from the front or edge of the stove. If handles are turned outward, they could be jostled or knocked off the stove and spill, causing burns.
- Keep electric cords from appliances such as electric knives or mixers from dangling off the counter in reach of a child.
BE MINDFUL OF OPEN FLAME
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, candles are responsible for an estimated 15,600 residential fires per year, resulting in 150 deaths, 1,270 injuries, and $539 million in property damage.
- Ensure matches and utility lighters are out of the reach of children. You may want to secure them up high or in a locked cabinet.
- Never leave children alone in a room with a lit candle.
BE CAUTIOUS DEEP-FRYING YOUR TURKEY
In recent years, it has become trendy to deep-fry turkeys instead of cooking them in the oven. Deep-frying a turkey, which involves submerging an entire bird in hot cooking oil, is so dangerous that the NFPA specifically discourages this cooking technique. Hot cooking oil can be spilled if a unit is tipped over or overfilled when a turkey is inserted. A small amount of cooking oil coming into contact with a burner can cause a large fire, and without thermostat controls, deep fryers may also overheat the oil to the point of combustion. In 2015, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported that there had been more than 168 turkey-fryer related fire, burn, explosion, or CO poisoning incidents since 2002, causing 672 injuries and $8 million in property damage.
- Never use a deep fryer on a wooden deck, under a patio cover, in a garage, or in an enclosed space.
- Fryers should only be used outdoors on a sturdy, level surface isolated from anything that could burn.
- Keep children and pets out of the 3-foot radius around your fryer to protect against burn injuries.
- The pot, lid, and handles of a turkey fryer can be incredibly hot. To protect hands and arms against burns, wear long, well-insulated cooking gloves.
- Wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from oil splatter.
- Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby and never use water to extinguish a grease fire.
- Make sure the turkey is completely thawed and thoroughly dried before it is placed in a fryer. The water from a frozen turkey will not mix with the oil in the fryer and can be an explosion hazard. The National Turkey Foundation recommends that you add 24 hours of thaw time in the refrigerator for every five pounds of turkey weight. Thawing in the refrigerator is the safest option, and turkeys should never be defrosted on the countertop.
By Jessica Davis
Floods and Flood Insurance: Don't Be Up the Creek Without a Paddle
As we, our neighbors, families, and friends, here and in Puerto Rico, are picking up the pieces in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria, the prospect of making claims on our homeowner’s insurance policies can seem overwhelming in the face of the destruction caused by these storms. Much of the damage in our neighborhoods are caused by strong winds, including roof and fence damage. Wind related damages are generally covered by your windstorm insurance policy. The flooding from rainwater and storm surge is excluded from both your general liability and windstorm policies likely because flooding is the most common and costly natural catastrophe.
In Florida’s four southernmost counties — Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, and Collier — more than 1.3 million homes lie in high-risk flood areas, according to data from the National Flood Insurance Program. Of these 1.3 million homes, more than 861,000 of them do not have flood insurance! As for those homes that are not in designated flood zones, the numbers of homes having flood insurance are much worse. This is cause for concern because, depending on the source, as little as 20-25% up to more than 50% of flood events occur outside of designated flood zones. Though your home and community may be in a low-risk flood zone, there is never a no-risk flood zone. Remember, even if you live inland, Florida is a peninsula surrounded on three sides by water and is at sea level. Flooding is always a risk.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is the governmental organization which designates flood zones and creates flood maps for most parts of the United States. Whether or not an area is a designated flood zone depends on numerous factors, including elevation, average rainfall, and proximity to waterbodies. Flood zones are organized into three categories: high-risk, moderate-low risk, and undetermined. Although some homeowners within certain flood zones are required to obtain flood insurance in order to obtain a federally insured mortgage, most are not. Because the purchase of flood insurance policies is often not required by the declarations of covenants of many community associations, many homeowners’ and community associations alike opt not to purchase flood insurance to lower the cost of assessments. In low-risk and moderate-risk flood zone areas, premiums can be several hundred dollars per year for homes, depending on the value of the home and the contents covered under the policy. In high-risk flood zone areas, annual premiums can reach into the thousands.
While it is reported that most Floridians do not have flood insurance coverage, Floridians actually account for a third of all of the flood insurance policies nationwide. Without flood insurance coverage, flood victims must rely on savings and other assets to finance their recovery.
FEMA also administers the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) which was created by the Federal government in 1968 to help control the growing cost of federal disaster relief. The NFIP offers federally secured flood insurance to community associations that adopt and enforce effective floodplain management policies to help reduce future flood losses. You can see if your community participates in the NFIP by visiting NFIP’s Community Status Book online through FEMA’s website. Is your community adequately covered in the event of a flood event? Check with your association’s insurance agent regarding flood insurance to find out more and remember this: If you do not buy flood insurance for your home and your community association does not have flood insurance for its clubhouse and the like, then one day when you least expect it, you too, could be all wet and up the creek without so much as a paddle!
By Jeffrey A. Rembaum, Esq.
Kaye Bender Rembaum
A Salute to Those Who Serve
Veterans Day is an opportunity to pay tribute to our military heroes, including Medal of Honor winners. "Without service and sacrifice, we would not have the nation that we do today" says Lance Cpl. William Kyle Carpenter. The Medal of Honor is the nation's highest military honor awarded for valor in combat.
Today there are 72 living Medal of Honor winners.
With the goal of honoring these heroes, as well as those who came before them, the National Medal of Honor Museum, due to open in late 2020 or early 2021, is being built at Patriots Point in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.
Mark Updegrove, the museum's CEO says he hopes it will be a place for future generations to learn about and celebrate brave veteran's stories.
Thank you to those Veterans and active serviceman and women who may read this and a prayer for those who cannot because they are no longer with us.
God Bless America and congratulations to those service men and women who have arrived back home to their families safe and sound.
SERVPRO of Sunrise thanks all veteran's for their continuous and brave effort to make sure our country stays safe at all times. Please feel free to contact us at (954) 748-7887
SERVPRO of Sunrise 24/7/365 days a year specializes Cleaning and Restoration services like:
-Fire, Smoke and Soot
- Water Removal & Dehumidification
-Mold Mitigation & Remediation
- Catastrophic Storm Response
- Move Outs and Contents Restoration
- Electronic and Equipment
- Air Ducts
- Biohazard, Crime Scene & Vandalism
- Carpet, Upholstery
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We are happy and proud members of the Greater Sunrise Chamber of Commerce and the Lauderhill Regional Chamber of Commerce. We also participate in different Association and networking groups.
8 Ways to Express Appreciation on Veterans Day
Veterans Day is an important day for showing appreciation to members of our military, past and present. If you're looking for an appropriate way to honor a veteran in your life, or would like to contribute in a way that's meaningful for veterans everywhere, here's a list of suggestions to start you off.
1. Show Up
Attend a Veterans Day event in your area -- not just a picnic with friends but an honest-to-goodness parade or service for veterans. Roy Rogers said, "We can't all be heroes; someone has to sit on the curb and clap as they go by." Veterans Day is a great opportunity to do just that.
There are a plethora of wonderful organizations who offer all manner of support, services and appreciation for our service members. To get a few ideas for donations, you can check out this page.
3. Fly a flag - correctly
Veterans Day is a great opportunity to fly the flag! Just make sure you're observing the proper rules for display. Not sure exactly what those are? Check out Military.com's guide to the flag.
4. Ask someone about their service
It seems like we all know someone who has served and Veterans Day is a great time to ask them about their service. Some questions to get started are: What did you do in the military? How long did you serve? What was your favorite moment in all your time in the service? Did anyone else in your family serve? Why did you choose to go into the service branch you did? Do not ask if they've killed anyone and should your veteran be a combat vet who is either unwilling to share or plainly states what they went through, be supportive without being intrusive. Sometimes you don't have to say anything, just listen and give them your full attention.
If you know a veteran, write a simple postcard or e-card that recognizes them on Veterans Day. If you don't know a veteran, look up the closest military installation and send one there. Small acts of recognizing someone's service, even anonymously, are appreciated.
6. Don't Confuse Veterans Day with Memorial Day
Veterans Day is a time to thank those who are serving or have served and are still with us. Memorial Day is to reflect and remember those who lost their lives in service to their country. Confusing the two or combining the two diminishes the importance of both.
7. Visit a VA Hospital
Find out what the policies are at your nearest VA hospital for interacting with patients or volunteering, and spend the day with a veteran. Many VA facilities will have events on Veterans Day or a special lunch you can help prepare. Even if you never interact with a veteran, helping at a facility is a way to give back.
8. Get Outdoors with a Veteran
Invite a veteran or a military family to explore a national park -- admission is free for all visitors on Veterans Day. Being outside helps improve physical and mental health, boosts emotional well-being, and is a great way to celebrate the day with a veteran.
Preparing Your Home For Winter in South Florida
Even though Florida winters are mild compared to other parts of the country, everyone should take some time to winterize their home. Whether you are planning on having family over for the holidays or will be leaving the house on vacation, here is a look at some of the steps that you can take to get your home ready for the colder months of the year.
Get Your Heating System Checked Out
While Florida residents might not experience a blizzard this winter, it is still a great idea to get your heating system inspected and serviced. An HVAC technician can look for damaged parts, inspect the ducts, change filters, and check for any other issues that could be dangerous or lead to an inefficient heating system.
Look for Cracks and Holes Inside and Out
Sealing up your home is a weekend chore that is easy to do and can save quite a bit of money for a few hours worth of work. With nothing more than some caulking and a caulking gun, homeowners can look over the inside and outside of their home for any cracks or holes that will allow cold air in. Some of the areas you might want to check include the doors, windows, vents, and pipes.
Inspect Your Roof, Rain Gutters, and Downspouts
Any cracks in your roof or clogs in the gutters could cause some serious damage when a storm hits. For those that are not comfortable getting on their roof, a professional can be called to inspect all of the shingles and look for damage to the roof. Rain gutters should be cleared out at least a few times a year and all downspouts should be free of debris and leading far away from the foundation of the home.
When residents are well-prepared, unnecessary costs and frustrations are avoided.
By Engineered Air
7 Energy Efficiency Tips for Your Home While on Your Vacation
Vacations are a time when you can relax a bit, forget about the little stresses of life, and spend some quality time with your families. However, people are often in such a hurry to pack and get out of town, they forget to prepare their home so that their electricity usage goes down while they are away.
You might be thinking, "No one is home playing video games or running the air conditioner, so we'll automatically use less energy!" Well, just because your house is empty of people doesn't mean that the appliances and lights have stopped sucking electricity from the grid. Thankfully, homeowners can save a significant amount of money by practicing a few simple energy saving tips to keep their electricity usage down while on vacation.
Heating and Cooling
With everyone out of the home for a few days, there is no reason to keep the heater or central air running, unless pets will be left at the house. Even with a pet or two in the home, you shouldn't set the thermostat for 72 when there is no one there to enjoy it. Instead, during the hot summer months, the thermostat can either be set for 85 or turned off completely.
The winter is a little more tricky. The thermostat should be set around 50 degrees to keep appliances and pipes from freezing. The worst way to end a vacation is to come home to a flooded basement or frozen dishwasher.
For every degree a thermostat is raised during the summer, a homeowner can save 2-3 percent on his or her electricity bill. If the home has a programmable thermostat that can be adjusted by date, then it can be set to change the temperature the day of arrival, so the family will come home to a comfortable household.
The only caveat to this is in the case of pets. If your family is going on a vacation of several weeks, your animals should either be boarded or an arrangement should be made with a friend to care for the animals daily, including feeding, watering, and walking (if necessary). If the pets are left in the home, then the temperature should not be set so high or low that it will cause them unnecessary discomfort. Your veterinarian will be able to advise a homeowner what household temperature will keep the pets safe while conserving energy.
This is one of those appliances people don't think about on a regular basis. It sits in a out-of-the-way part of the house (usually the basement or attic) heating your water, and you only remember it when the water runs cold during a long shower. It's also easy to forget about when leaving on a vacation.
Before heading to the airport, shut off the circuit breaker to the water heater. If you have a gas heater, turn the gas valve off to be safe. Upon returning home, the hot water tap should be allowed to run before the power and gas are turned on to make sure the water tank isn't empty. It can damage the unit if the tank is heated without any water in it.
If you go on a winter vacation, you should leave the water heater on at the lowest possible (or "vacation" setting) to keep the water from freezing in the lines and tank.
Electronics and Appliances
Even with the home empty and the television and major appliances turned off, they are still using electricity. We call them "energy vampires." Before the family leaves, someone should walk around the home and unplug every unnecessary appliance and electronics. This doesn't just include the television, lamps, and entertainment center. Small electronics like electric razors, coffee pots, digital clocks, and cell phone chargers all drain energy when plugged in.
Nothing needs to be moved, simply unplugged. This not only saves energy, but also eliminates a possible fire hazard if there is a power surge while no one is home.
People don't want their houses to look unoccupied while on vacation, because it's easy for burglars to spot. People commonly think that the easiest thing to do is leave a light or two on inside so the home appears lit during the evening hours. This could be a lamp in the living room or even a larger light that may provide light for the entire dining room.
While this is a good safety idea, it's an unnecessary waste of energy - thanks to the invention of automatic lights. These devices place the lights on a timer, so certain lights will turn on and off at a specific times of the day, depending upon your programming. It gives the illusion of being home and prevents wasted energy by keeping lights off during the day.
The automatic timers range from as little as $10 to $30 for an average unit. They can also be used to turn on a radio to add sound as a further deterrent to burglars.
If you don't have an automatic light timer, just ask a friend to visit the home every couple of days to turn on lights at night and turn it off during the day. This is an easy task, especially if they are already visiting to help with pets or plants.
Blinds and Curtains
Saving energy doesn't always require not using electricity. Most windows in a home have either blinds or curtains. Usually, they are used to let light in or keep light out, but when on vacation, they can be a useful way to conserve heat energy.
Lower the blinds and close the curtains when leaving for vacation. This simple act will keep heat from coming in during the summer and letting heat out during the winter. If the furnace is on and set to a lower temperature, lowering the shades and closing the curtains helps to slow the rising or lowering of the temperature in the home.
The refrigerator is the electronic equivalent of a large V-8 engine, sucking electricity like a high-performance car. An extended vacation gives you the opportunity to get rid of the food in the fridge, clean it a bit, and unplug it. If the house is vacant for only a few days, it's not worth the trouble to unplug the device, as much of the food will still be good upon return, but extended stays are a different story.
Before leaving, the homeowner should unload the food and clean out the refrigerator thoroughly, leaving the doors open to air out. Also, place a box of baking soda in the freezer and refrigerator to draw in the moisture and help prevent mold growth. Taking the refrigerator offline will save a significant amount of energy while nobody is home.
As an alternative to turning off the refrigerator, set the refrigerator temperature to 42 degrees and the freezer to 5 degrees. This increase is enough to keep everything cold and frozen, but still save energy over the vacation period. As a precaution, it is a good idea to clean out the refrigerator of any leftovers, raw vegetables, and other perishables, and keep only new foods that won't spoil while the house is empty.
Save Money and Stress on Vacation
Vacations can cost a significant amount of money for a family, even with all of the fun you'll have together. It's nice to know that, by practicing these tips and tricks, you can save money on electric bill by drastically decreasing your electricity while you're out of the house. When recovering from the cost of a vacation, every little bit helps. Bon voyage!
By Bounce Energy
Water Damage Restoration Tips Hurricane Victims Often Miss
In the wake of Hurricanes Irma and Harvey, many homeowners are struggling to get up to speed on water damage restoration—the process it takes to repair a home that's endured a flood or other water-related problems.
Even at the minor level of a leaky roof or burst pipe, water damage can easily hit homeowners with bills amounting to several thousand dollars—and with a hurricane, that number can skyrocket. All told, estimates from AccuWeather put the damage from Irma at more than $100 billion, and Harvey at $190 billion, which makes summer 2017 the costliest weather disaster season in U.S. history.
The good news: Water damage restoration is typically covered by insurance—be it flood insurance or a basic homeowners policy. According to the Insurance Information Institute, water damage makes up about 20% of all insurance claims in the U.S.
And if you're a hurricane victim, reimbursements can be sizable. The National Flood Insurance Program, which provides flood insurance to homeowners, paid an average of $64,331 to each homeowner hit by Superstorm Sandy; victims of Hurricane Katrina received an average of $97,141 apiece.
But before you dive into fixing your waterlogged home and calling your insurer, you should make sure you know the process of water damage restoration. Here are the steps to take that many homeowners might miss in their rush to patch things up.
Before you clean up, take pics
As hard as this might seem, don't start cleaning things up before you whip out your camera and take photos of the damage. This serves as critical proof of the repairs you need to make, says Bill Begal, a restoration specialist in Baltimore. Without pics, you might end up reducing the amount of financial help you get.
If your flood was caused by a malfunctioning washing machine or dishwasher rather than a storm, you'll also want to save the appliance as evidence—it might be something an insurance adjuster will take into consideration when reviewing your case. Keeping the evidence can also help if you decide to contact the appliance's manufacturer, who will at the very least owe you a replacement product.
Remove whatever water you can
Once the documentation stage is done, it's time to rid your home of as much of the water as you possibly can. Definitely don't wait for a professional to swing by; it's up to you to get the process rolling, because the longer water sits in your home, the deeper it can seep into your drywall, floors, and other areas, making it that much harder to remove. Mold and mildew will also typically begin growing within 24 to 48 hours, Begal says, depending on the temperature and relative humidity.
Furthermore, many home insurance companies require insured parties to take "necessary measures" to prevent further damage from occurring. In other words, if you don't try to suck up the water that's all over your bathroom floor, an insurance company may deny a claim for damage to that floor because you didn't act to mitigate the damage.
Shop vacuums can help suck up standing water, and turning on fans will help the moisture dissipate. If you have a basement, and there's water backed up down there, Begal says check your basement's drains (if it has them) to ensure they aren't clogged. That will help water flow out more quickly.
Get help from a water damage restoration specialist
Generally, extensive water damage is not the kind of thing you should fix on your own. Instead, you should call a water damage restoration specialist (or a contractor with experience in this area). This pro will come in armed with industrial-grade dehumidifiers, air purifiers, and other equipment that will help dry out your place much more thoroughly than anything you have on hand. A specialist can also evaluate the extent of the damage and mitigate health issues that might come with mold and bacteria growth, and make sure the home is safe to inhabit.
Apply for government aid if you can
If your water damage was caused by a hurricane, you might qualify for home repair assistance grants through the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Just know that the government will not step in if you have insurance to cover the problem, and you qualify only if your home is located in areas where there's been a federal disaster declaration. Check FEMA's Disaster Assistance website, or call 800-621-3362.
Some homeowners who've been through a hurricane or other similar natural disaster might also qualify for low-interest disaster loans from the Small Business Association. And no, you don't need to be a business owner to qualify; residential homes do, too. Check if you're eligible at SBA.gov.
By Jeanne Sager
The American Red Cross
The American Red Cross continues to help people impacted by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma. Hurricane Irma was the most powerful Atlantic Ocean hurricane on record. People in the potential paths of storms should monitor weather reports and prepare accordingly.
The Red Cross has robust disaster response capabilities, which allow the organization to respond to two significant disasters like Hurricanes Harvey and Irma without compromising assistance to those in need.
The Red Cross is doing everything it can to get help where it’s needed. Access to many areas remains challenging but the Red Cross is expanding its reach into more communities every day. The Red Cross is working around the clock to support the victims of Hurricane Harvey and Irma.
More than 16,000 people sought refuge in 90 Red Cross and partner shelters across Texas. The Red Cross is also assisting the Louisiana state government with emergency shelters. Even now, more than 3,100 Red Cross disaster workers have helped:
- Along with its partners, serve more than 906,000 meals and snacks;
- Provide care by supporting 26,000 mental health and health services contacts;
- Distribute more than 194,000 relief items like diapers and comfort kits that contain deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste and other hygiene items for people forced from their homes; and
- Mobilize more than 190 emergency response vehicles to help deliver meals and relief supplies.
The American Red Cross mounted a massive response for hurricane Irma. Red Cross workers are hard at work on many island nations throughout the storm’s path and, with Irma bearing down on Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, the American Red Cross is there helping.
To prepare for Hurricane Irma, the American Red Cross:
- Mobilized relief materials through Florida and the mid-Atlantic region.
- Staged responders in nearby areas so they may respond quickly.
- Planned to have the resources to shelter more than 120,000 people.
- Activated 80 emergency response vehicles.
- Prepositioned 100,000 shelf-stable meals.
Even as The Red Cross continues to operate shelters, serve meals, and provide critical relief supplies in areas affected by Hurricane Harvey & Irma, people returned home and still need assistance. The Red Cross will work with individuals and families to help them recover. The Red Cross will help residents start the recovery process by connecting them to needed services and resources. In some cases, the Red Cross may provide financial assistance.
Recovering from a disaster can be a challenging, emotionally draining and complicated process. Each community and each family will have different needs, and will require different support to meet those needs. Red Cross caseworkers connect one-on-one with people to create recovery plans, navigate paperwork and locate help from other agencies.
The Red Cross works with government and nonprofit partners to help develop coordinated community recovery plans and strategies. In some situations, the Red Cross may give grants to partner organizations for specialized activities such as mold remediation or building storm shelters. Our recovery support could also include preparedness activities so people and communities are ready for the next emergency.
Here’s how you can help: Make a donation today. Click here to make a donation.
SERVPRO Industries, Inc.
SERVPRO of Sunrise 954-748-7887
A Safe and Spooktacular Halloween
From the candy to the costumes, Halloween is a fun-filled time for kids and parents. To help make it a trick-free treat, follow these simple safety tips:
Adorning Your Little Ghouls
- Choose a light-colored costume that's easily seen at night. Add reflective tape or glow-in-the-dark tape to the front and back and to the trick-or-treat bag.
- Only buy a costume labeled "flame-retardant." This means the material won't burn. If you make your own costume, use nylon or polyester materials, which are flame-retardant.
- Make sure wigs and beards don't cover your kids' eyes, noses, or mouths.
- Masks can make it hard for kids to see and breathe. Instead, use nontoxic face paint or makeup.
- Avoid colored or decorative contact lenses, unless they're prescribed by an eye doctor for your child.
- Put a nametag — with your phone number — on your children's costumes.
- To prevent falls, avoid oversized and high-heeled shoes. Make sure the rest of the costume fits well too.
- Make sure that any props your kids carry, such as wands or swords, are short and flexible.
- Don't let kids use knives. Have them draw their designs on the pumpkin with a black marker — then you or an older sibling can do the carving.
- Remove pumpkin guts safely. If your children beg to do it — as many kids do — let your little ones get messy safely by scooping out pumpkin flesh with their hands or an ice cream scoop.
- Clean up the mess. Pumpkin flesh is slippery and can cause falls and injuries when dropped on the floor. Layer newspaper or old cloths under your carving workspace and clean up spills right away so no one slips or trips.
- Skip the candles, which may cause fires. A burning candle in a pumpkin may become a blazing fire if left unattended. Instead, use a glow stick (available in many colors) or flameless candle to safely illuminate your jack-o'-lantern.
- Go with young children (under age 12). Make sure they know how to call 911 in case they get lost. Check to make sure they know their home phone number.
- Know the route taken by older kids who trick-or-treat on their own, and when they'll be coming home. Also be sure that they:
- carry a cellphone, if possible
- go in a group and stay together
- only go to houses with porch lights on
- walk on sidewalks on lit streets (never through alleys or across lawns)
- walk from house to house (never run) and always walk facing traffic when walking on roads
- stay away from candles and other flames
- know to never go into strangers' homes or cars
- cross the street at crosswalks and never assume that vehicles will stop
- Give kids flashlights with new batteries. Kids may also enjoy wearing glow sticks as bracelets or necklaces.
- Limit trick-or-treating to your neighborhood and the homes of people you know.
- When your kids get home, help them check all treats to make sure they're sealed. Throw out candy with torn packages or holes in the packages, spoiled items, and any homemade treats that haven't been made by someone you know.
- Don't allow young children to have hard candy or gum that could cause choking.
Note: Make sure trick-or-treaters will be safe when visiting your home too. Remove anything that could cause them to trip or fall on your walkway or lawn. Make sure the lights are on outside your house and light the walkway to your door, if possible. Keep family pets away from trick-or-treaters, even if they seem harmless to you.
Gobbling Down Halloween Goodies
- Consider buying Halloween treats other than candy. Stickers, erasers, crayons, pencils, coloring books, and sealed packages of raisins and dried fruits are good choices.
- Know how much candy your kids collected and store it somewhere other than their bedrooms. Consider being somewhat lenient about candy eating on Halloween, within reason, and talk about how the rest of the candy will be handled. Let kids have one or two treats a day instead of leaving candy out in big bags or bowls for kids to sample at will.
Water Damage Tips
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.
Have A Water Damage Emergency?
Our goal is to help you through the cleanup process and make it "Like it never even happened."