Tips to address floods and water damage

When this severe flooding happens, it can be a costly experience both emotionally and financially. While it is tempting to wait and see what happens or to try to fix the situation on your own, it is critical to get a professional to address floods and water damage right away.

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Tips for mitigating against further damage:

The longer you wait – the more damaged your property can become! Moisture only needs a few hours to cause critical damage to materials in a home or workplace. When any type of water loss or damage occurs, the amount of time a material stays wet is the most crucial factor in determining the damage sustained, and whether or not the material can be restored.

Responding quickly decreases the likelihood of substantial mould growth, which can further damage building materials and cause potentially severe health effects to building occupants.

Don’t try to handle it yourself. Floods and sewage backups may carry with them a lot of bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Any type of contact with these microorganisms can be dangerous, especially to at risk building occupants such as seniors and children. Professional restoration companies possess the proper safety equipment for these situations, are trained to protect themselves and building occupants from these hazards.

Choosing a qualified water damage professional:

In addition to contacting your insurance company, the first call made in a water loss situation should be to a qualified water damage restoration service. Finding a company that can respond quickly, provide a full range of services, and is available 24/7 is the first crucial step in response to any water damage or flood situation.

Choose certified water damage restoration professionals. IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification) certification assures a company possesses the most up to date training, and is equipped with the knowledge and skills to effectively handle your specific situation. The IICRC maintains a Certified Firm registrant-only database, making it easy to find a professional in your neighbourhood.

Restoration technicians have an extensive selection of technology at their disposal. Water damage professionals are equipped with vacuums and pumping systems, dehumidifiers, air movers and moisture metres to assess and effectively dry building components, and chemicals required to destroy mould and fungi growth.

What can an EHS professional do:

In situations with extensive mould growth, or that involve other severe public health concerns, such as buildings with high risk occupants, an Environmental, Health and Safety professional should be used to assist in evaluating damage and determining cleaning/drying procedures. This will help you in outlining a specific scope of work for the restoration contractor and ensure you are doing more than you really need to.

EHS professionals can also provide post-remediation testing and analysis ensure the effectiveness of remediation and restoration activities. This gives you both records of completed work, as well as the peace of mind that your home or building was restored quickly and safely.

About Us:

T. Harris Environmental Management Inc. (THEM) is a leading Canadian environmental consulting firm in the fields of environmental services, hazardous materials management, industrial hygiene, and occupational health and safety. Our professional staff serve a wide range of clientele including commercial, government, industrial institutional, and residential. We are passionate about health & safety and committed to excellence.

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For more than 35 years, we continue to provide high quality services, taking pride in building long-term relationships with our clients. We are dedicated to understanding your concerns and meeting your needs by delivering efficient, cost-effective solutions.

Mission: To be the preeminent niche environmental and occupational health and safety consulting firm in Ontario, Quebec and Alberta.

Vision: To enhance our position as a premier niche environmental consulting company based on knowledge, innovation, technology, and be at the forefront of emerging EHS concerns and regulatory changes. We will achieve this by further developing our expertise, fostering growth of our team, synergistic relationships, excellence in performance, and strengthening client relationships.

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