Recent Fire Damage Posts

Deck The Halls Safely!

12/11/2019 (Permalink)

Photo of woman decorating Christmas Tree Photo by Arun Kuchibhotla via Unsplash

Deck the halls smartly and safely this holiday season when it comes to your families Christmas Tree.  A small fire that spreads to a Christmas tree can grow large very quickly!

Picking The Tree

  • Choose a tree with fresh green needles that do do fall off when touched

Placing The Tree

  • Make sure the tree is at least three feet away from any heat source, like fire places, radiators, candles, heat vents or lights
  • Make sure the tree is not blocking an exit
  • Water the tree daily to prevent drying out

Lighting The Tree

  • Use lights that have the label of a recognized testing lab.  Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use
  • Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.  Read the manufacturer's instructions for the number of lights strands that can be connected  
  • Never use lit candles to decorate a tree
  • Always turn off Christmas tree lights before leaving home or going to bed

After Christmas

  • Discard the tree after Christmas or when it is dry.  Dried-out trees are a fire hazard and should not be left in the home, garage or placed outside against the home
  • Check with your local community to find a recycling program
  • Bring outdoor electrical lights inside after the holidays to prevent hazards and make them last longer

All of us at SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County wish everyone a safe and Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.  

Happy Thanksgiving From Our Family to Yours!

11/27/2019 (Permalink)

Photo of Thanksgiving dessert table Photo by Elements5digital via Upsplash

Did you know that Thanksgiving is the leading day of the year for home fires involving cooking equipment?  

The kitchen is the heart of the home, especially during the holidays.  There is often extra people, including children during this special time.  Please remember to:

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stove top to keep an eye on things.  
  • Stay in the home when cooking your turkey and check on it frequently
  • Keep children away from the stove.  The kitchen is not a place for them to be playing
  • Make sure children stay away from hot food and liquids.  The steam or splash from vegetables, gravy or coffee could cause serious burns
  • Keep the floors clear so you don't trip over kids, toys, pocketbooks or bags
  • Keep knives out of 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 reach of children
  • Never leave children alone in a room with a lit candle
  • Make sure your smoke alarms are working

and most importantly...Relax and enjoy the day with friends and family!  

SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County is available 24/7- even on the holidays!  Call us at 860-887-0447

Avoid a Recipe for Disaster

11/20/2019 (Permalink)

Photo of turkey showing it's colorful plumage Photo by Suzy Brooks via Upsplash

Thinking of deep frying your turkey this year?  Not only does it use less cooking time and frees up your oven for other side dishes, it's delicious and juicy.  However...according to the National Fire Protection Association, deep fryer fires cause an average of 5 deaths, 60 injuries and more than 15 million in property damage each year.  Here are some safety tips of your taking the plunge into deep frying your turkey

  • Make sure to use the fryer outdoors and from a safe distance from flammable materials and other buildings
  • Never set up the fryer in the garage
  • Keep children clear
  • Never leave the fryer unattended
  • Use safety googles to protect your eyes and always use pot holders or oven mitts when handling the fryer
  • Make sure the turkey is completely thawed
  • Keep a fire extinguisher near the fryer.  DO NOT use water to put out a grease fire

We recommend this recipe for a delicious Thanksgiving instead:

Simple Dry Rub Recipe

1 Tbsp Smoked Paprika

2 Tbsp Salt

1 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder

1 1/2 tsp Black Pepper

1 1/2 tsp Onion Powder

1 tsp Cayenne Pepper

1 tsp Dried Thyme

1 tsp Poultry Seasoning

Mix all ingredients and set aside.  Thaw turkey and remove giblets.  Make a 3-inch cut on each side where the leg meets the breast to ensure oil drains out and the meat cooks evenly.  Massage the dry rub mixture on and under the skin, and sprinkle some inside the cavity.  Place the bird on a try, cover it with plastic wrap and put in the refrigerator overnight.  When your ready to cook follow all manufactures instructions on your fryer.  

We are thankful for all our customers and wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving from SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County.  

Is Something Burning?

10/11/2019 (Permalink)

Photo of pot of boiling water over an open flame Photo by Matthew McBrayer via Upsplash

Fire Prevention Week is October 6-12th.    We will be featuring a blog post each day this week to remind our customers of ways to prevent fires in their homes. 

Kitchen Fires

While we all can’t be gourmet chefs in the kitchen, even a fire star rated chef can have mishaps in the kitchen.  Did you know that cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries?  We have some tips to safely cook in your kitchen

  • The leading cause of kitchen fires is unattended cooking.  Never leave something that is boiling, frying, grilling or broiling unattended. 
  • When baking or roasting food, check on it regularly and use a timer to remind yourself that you are cooking
  • Keep anything that can catch fire- oven mitts, towels, curtains, food packaging or wooden utensils away from the stove top.

If you have a small (grease) cooking fire

  • Smother the flame by sliding a lid over the pan and turning off the burner
  • For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed
  • Don’t hesitate to call 9-1-1.  Kitchen fires can get out of control quickly. 

In case of fire in your home, SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County is always ready 24/7.  Let us help you get your home back to “Like it never even happened."

Home Heating Safety

10/10/2019 (Permalink)

Photo of a fireplace with burning logs Photo by Hayden Scott via Upsplash

Fire Prevention Week is October 6-12th.    We will be featuring a blog post each day this week to remind our customers of ways to prevent fires in their homes. 

Home Heating Safety

It’s already starting to get chilly in Connecticut; soon we will all have our heat on to get us through the winter.  The National Fire Protection Association reports that half of the home heating fires happen in December, January and February.  Here are some tips for safely heating your home

  • Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, which includes the furnace, wood stove, and portable space heaters
  • Never use your oven to heat your home
  • Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by qualified professionals
  • Remember to turn off portable heaters when leaving the room or going to bed
  • Keep a three foot “kid free zone” around open fires and space heaters.  Never leave children unsupervised in these areas.
  • Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room.
  • When removing ashes from a fire place, wait until they are cool before putting them in a metal container a safe distance away from the home.   

In case of fire in your home, SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County is always ready 24/7.  Let us help you get your home back to “Like it never even happened."

Smoke Detectors

10/9/2019 (Permalink)

Man in smoky kitchen holding burning food Try to place detectors ten feet from the stove to prevent false alarms from the heat.

Fire Prevention Week is October 6-12th.    We will be featuring a blog post each day this week to remind our customers of ways to prevent fires in their homes. 

Smoke Detectors

You have your escape plan ready to go.  Are your smoke detectors working properly?  Follow this list of tips to make sure everyone in your home is alerted to a fire emergency. 

  • Install smoke detectors in every bedroom.  They should also be outside each sleeping area and on every level including the basement
  • It is best to use interconnected alarms, that way when one goes off, they all go off
  • Test all smoke detectors at least once a month
  • Smoke detectors should be on the ceiling or high on a wall
  • People who are hard-of-hearing or deaf can use special alarms.  These detectors  have strobe lights and bed shakers
  • Replace all smoke detectors when they are 10 years old
  • Take advantage of smoke detectors that are multi-sensing and can alert for carbon monoxide levels as well.  

 In case of fire in your home, SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County is always ready 24/7.  Let us help you get your home back to “Like it never even happened."

What are the leading causes of home fires?

10/4/2019 (Permalink)

Photo showing house engulfed in flames with fireman attempting to put out Photo by Daniel Tausis via Upsplash

Fire Prevention Week is October 6-12th.    We will be featuring a blog post each day this week to remind our customers of ways to prevent fires in their homes. 

 According to the National Fire Protection Agency  the are five leading causes of fire in the home. Can you guess what they are?

Cooking

Cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires.  The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is leaving cooking unattended. 

Heating

Heating equipment is a leading cause of fires in Homes.  According to the National Fire Protection Agency, from 2012-2016 there was an estimated average of 52,050 fires involving heating equipment each year

Smoking

Smoking materials, including cigarettes, pipes and cigars started 17,200 of the reported fires in homes in 2014 according to the National Fire Protection Agency. 

Electrical

Aging electrical systems in older homes can be a source of arc faults, either through normal wear and tear or because the systems cannot accommodate the greater demands of modern appliances. Circuits can also be overloaded by providing electricity to too many appliances, often through power cords.

 Candles

Candles enhance our homes, but remember they are an open flame that can easily ignite anything that can burn

In case of fire in your home, SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County is always ready 24/7.  Let us help you get your home back to “Like it never even happened."

Plan Your Escape!

10/4/2019 (Permalink)

Broken exit sign among charred fire debris Photo by Kev Soto via Upsplash

Fire Prevention Week is October 6-12th.    We will be featuring a blog post each day this week to remind our customers of ways to prevent fires in their homes and safety tips

Escape Plans

  •  If a fire breaks out, does your family know how to get out the quickest way?  Make an escape plan so everyone knows what to do and where to do in case of a fire.  Follow these tips for Escape Planning
  • Make a plan!  Draw a map of your home showing the locations of doors and windows. 
  • Know at least two ways out of every room, if possible.  Make sure all doors and windows leading outside can be opened easily.  You need every second during an emergency.
  • Have an outside meeting place (like the mailbox, a tree or light pole) that is a safe distance from the home where everyone can meet. 
  • Practice your home fire drill at night and during the day at least twice a year. Make sure you practice both ways out. 
  • Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can’t get to them.
  • Close doors behind you as you leave.  This can help the fire from spreading. 

 If the alarm goes off

  • Get out and stay out.  Never go back in for people or pets
  • If you have to escape through smoke, Get Low and Go under the smoke to your way out
  • Call the fire department from outside your home. 

In case of fire in your home, SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County is always ready 24/7.  Let us help you get your home back to “Like it never even happened."

Safety First on the Fourth!

7/2/2019 (Permalink)

While celebrating the 4th Of July SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County wants to remind you that safety comes 1st on the 4th!  Fireworks account for thousands of injuries every year.  Please keep the following safety tips in mind.

  • Never allow young children to handle fireworks
  • Older children should use them only under close adult supervision
  • Never use fireworks while impaired by drugs or alcohol
  • Anyone using fireworks or standing nearby should wear protective eyewear
  • Never hold lighted fireworks in your hands
  • Never light them indoors
  • Only use them away from people, houses and flammable material
  • Never point or throw fireworks at another person
  • Only light one device at a time and maintain a safe distance after lighting
  • Never ignite devices in a container
  • Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks
  • Soak both spent and unused fireworks in water for a few hours before discarding
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby to fully extinguish fireworks that don't go off or in case of fire
  • Never use illegal fireworks

Happy 4th of July from SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County! 

Willimantic Waste Paper Co. Smoke, Soot & Smell

1/31/2018 (Permalink)

Fire officials work a fire Sunday at a Willimantic Waste Paper Co. Inc. building adjacent to General Cable. (Mark Mirko / Hartford Courant)

The massive fire at Willimantic Waste Paper Co. this weekend resulted in a total loss, but fortunately no one was injured. Fourteen fire companies banned together to help get the massive fire under control. U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal praised the quick response and said it serves as a model to the country.

The fire left a 100,000 square foot shell remaining behind. There is still much cleanup and the surrounding areas are seeing damage from the fire as well and will take quite some time.

The cause of the fire has been ruled undetermined due to the extensive heat and fire. For now there is no indication of foul play.

If your home or business is near The Willimantic Waste plant and you have smoke, soot or odor from the fire, SERVPRO of Norwich and Windham County can help clean up the mess and remove the odor and the damages may be covered under your homeowners insurance policy.

Click here to learn more about the fire.

SUMMER FIRE PREVENTION: PART 2 - AT HOME

6/16/2017 (Permalink)

Be prepared for fire hazards in and around your home. Here are some things to keep in mind from SERVPRO Norwich / Windham County that can start a fire and impact you, your family and your property.

Clothes Dryers

Clothes dryers are a leading cause of issues in the home and most often result from lack of cleaning.

  • Don’t use a dryer that doesn’t have a lint protector.
  • Clean out lint and don’t let it build up.
  • Have your dryer serviced and installed by a professional.

Gas Grills

  • Remove anything hanging above the grill
  • Keep grill a safe distance from trees, buildings, and anything that may burn.
  • Clean grill frequently to stop grease buildup which can cause a fire.
  • Keep grills away from homes and decks.
  • Make sure the hose connection is tight and check the hoses for leaks.
  • If the grill does not light immediately, wait at least 15 minutes for the propane to dissipate.
  • When your finished turn off the grill and fuel cylinder.
  • Keep clothing away from the surface while grilling.

Charcoal Grills

  • In charcoal grills don’t add fluid after the coals are lit, and once the coals are cooled they should be placed in metal container with tight lid.

Fire Pit

  • Keep fire manageable.
  • Make sure fire is 10 feet away from any structure or combustible surface (plants, overhanging trees, buildings, furniture, et cetera).
  • Be aware of the weather forecast.
  • Always have a way to put out a fire (water, bucket of sand, fire blanket).
  • Clean the area surrounding the fire pit.
  • Keep a close eye on children if they are near the fire pit.

Around Your Home

  • Remove billowy curtains or look for different insulating options.
  • Store flammable products in a safe place, like an outdoor shed.
  • Stack firewood away from the house in an uphill direction.

Have a Plan

  • Have two escape routes out of your home.
  • Have an evacuation plan with a meeting location if your family gets separated.
  • Have personal identification, insurance documents and medication in known location that can be moved in the event of an emergency.
  • Place valuables in a fire and waterproof box in a place for easy and quick access.

Stop, Drop and Roll

We all remember sitting through a childhood safety class and hearing the popular adage, “stop,drop, and roll” in the event of a fire situation. Keep this memorable phrase in mind if you or your loved ones are ever in harm’s way.

In the event the unexpected should happen, be sure to call SERVPRO Norwich / Windham County at (860) 887-0447. We offer 24/7 emergency service and will help you with all your fire and water damage restoration... "Like it never even happened."

SUMMER FIRE PREVENTION: PART 1 - THE OUTDOORS

6/14/2017 (Permalink)

With the official start of summer only days away we at SERVPRO of Norwich / Windham County would like to review some important outdoor safety tips.

Wildfires

Watch the weather for conditions that are optimal for wildfires:

  • Low temperatures
  • High winds
  • Extremely dry spells

Fireworks

Carelessness and misuse of fireworks can lead to serious injury, so following these helpful tips to stay safe when handling fireworks.

  • Check for any fireworks are bans in your area.
  • Never point fireworks at people or, in the direction of structures and things that may easily catch fire.
  • Abide by all local rules and regulations.
  • Properly dispose of fireworks and flammable materials.

Fire pits and Campfires

A fire pit or campfire embers can travel one mile from the source of the main fire to land on roofs, decks, dry grass/leaves or in homes through any opening.

  • Abide by rules in the area by paying attention to fire bans, limits, times and other regulations.
  • Don’t build fires near dry leaves or overhanging tree branches
  • Surround your fire with rocks.
  • Keep lighter fluid and other flammable materials away.
  • Be careful with how much lighter fluid you use.
  • Keep fire away from tents and property and make sure it’s downwind.
  • Never leave a fire unattended,
  • Always put out a fire completely before you leave.

If a fire does impact you and your family call SERVPRO Norwich / Windham County at (860) 887 - 0447 for all of your fire restoration needs.