The Restoration Industry Association Advises What to do After the Disaster

Rockville, MD - The Restoration Industry Association (RIA) has these tips for individuals impacted by Hurricane Irene and now cleaning up in the aftermath:

  • Notify your insurance company of the loss.
  • Keep a notebook to track dates and times of conversations with individuals pertaining to your claim.
  • Save receipts for meals, hotels, toiletries, replacement clothing, prescriptions, etc.
  • Take photos of each room for future reference and insurance claims. This will provide a digital inventory of some visible contents.
  • If electrical appliances, including televisions and computers are damaged by water, do not turn them back on when power is restored. This can result in electric shock and/or do further damage to the appliance. Electronics can often be cleaned & restored by contractors who know what they’re doing.
  • Drywall, insulation and carpeting/padding impacted by the muddy water will probably need to be removed and replaced.
  • Beware of scammers offering restoration services. Check references and visit the Restoration Industry Association website - www.restorationindustry.org - to find a contractor.
  • Wear heavy rubber gloves or work gloves and thick-soled shoes, preferably not tennis shoes.
  • Wash your hands frequently - especially before touching your face or eating.
  • Be careful of muddy water - there can be sharp items such as broken glass, nails, etc.
  • Avoid cross contamination – don’t wear dirty clothes or shoes to the clean part of the house.
  • Drink lots of water to stay hydrated.
  • Don’t use bleach to disinfect since it is corrosive and can react with other substances. Use household disinfectants.
  • Open windows to ventilate the area. Open drawers and cabinets for interior drying, but don’t force them open.
  • Remove standing water from flat surfaces by sponging and blotting.
  • Hard surfaces can be disinfected as well as some soft goods, depending on washability.
  • Transport computers and musical instruments to a dry environment.
  • Remove lamps and other items from wet furniture tops.
  • Dry out as much as you can to prevent further damage.
  • For clean up tips, information on hiring a contractor, and restoration & remediation in general, visit the RIA website at www.restorationindustry.org and click on the Consumer link.

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