Recent Storm Damage Posts

Prepare for a Storm

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

During the spring and summer months, storms that produce lightning, thunder, heavy rain, flooding, strong winds, tornadoes, and hail can occur. These storms are extremely dangerous and can appear suddenly with little warning and may only last a few minutes but have the strength and power to cause a great amount of damage.

Before A Thunderstorm

  • Check weather forecasts daily, purchase an all-hazard weather radio and have multiple ways to receive weather alerts.
  • Plan outdoor events near a secure shelter where people can go in the event of a storm.
  • Keep trees trimmed to prevent limbs from falling onto buildings, cars or people.
  • If hail or strong winds are expected, park vehicles under a shelter to avoid damage.
  • Make sure preparedness kits are portable for easy transport if evacuation is necessary. Preparedness kits should be tailored to household needs.
  • Bring pets indoors before a storm moves into the area. Sheds, dog houses, and garages do not provide ample protection from lightning, hail, high winds, and tornadoes.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is alert and ready for storm damage concerns. Call us today at 847-983-4468

Spring Storms

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

Spring storms strike no matter where you live.  Wind, rain, hail, tornadoes, and flooding can cause costly damage to your home.

Luckily there are ways to prevent potential costly damage to your home.

  1. Clean out gutters and downspouts

Clogged gutters, drains, and downspouts can lead to roof damage during a storm. Dirt and debris can cause water to be unable to flow away from the roofline, adding weight to your roof and potentially causing a roof collapse.

Before the spring storms strike, check your downspouts and gutters to ensure that winter storms haven’t created any blockages. While you’re up there, make sure that all connections are secure and that no repairs are necessary.

  1. Seal your windows, doors, and roof

Check the seals around your doors and windows. Look for loose screws and cracked caulking, and make repairs if necessary. If you live in an area that's prone to heavy storms, consider investing in impact-resistant windows to protect your home.

When you inspect your doors, check that there are three hinges on each to provide additional support. Then, make sure your threshold is screwed directly into your house, as opposed to only your door frame.

Next, inspect your roof. If you find any missing or damaged shingles, an area of sagging, or other damage, have your roof professionally inspected before a storm hits. Repairs can keep your home from experiencing severe damage due to a leaky roof.

  1. Search for cracks in the foundation

Even small cracks in your foundation or basement can put your home at risk of major damage during a spring storm. If water seeps in through the cracks, your home could be in danger of flooding. Furthermore, high winds can make existing cracks prone to widening, causing significant structural damage throughout the home. If you find or suspect any cracks in your foundation or basement, call a professional to seal them to help you prepare for a flood.

  1. Install a backflow valve in your basement to prevent sewage backup

Heavy rain can cause municipal sewers systems to become overtaxed, creating the possibility for excess water to flow backward through your home's sewer lines. Plumbing fixtures situated at the lowest points in your home may be particularly prone to sewer backup. Consider installing a sewer backflow valve to divert unexpected water away from your sewer lines and back to your city's sewage system.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Going Home Again

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

After natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods, be aware that your house may be contaminated with mold or sewage, which can cause health effects for your family.

When You First Reenter Your Home

  • If you have standing water in your home and can turn off the main power from a dry location, then go ahead and turn off the power, even if it delays cleaning. If you must enter standing water to access the main power switch, then call an electrician to turn it off. NEVER turn power on or off yourself or use an electric tool or appliance while standing in water.
  • Have an electrician check the house’s electrical system before turning the power on again.
  • If the house has been closed up for several days, enter briefly to open doors and windows to let the house air out for awhile (at least 30 minutes) before you stay for any length of time.
  • If your home has been flooded and has been closed up for several days, presume your home has been contaminated with mold.
  • If your home has been flooded, it also may be contaminated with sewage.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Difference Between a “Watch” and a “Warning”

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

The National Weather Service (NWS) keeps an eye on forecasts and climate data around the country. When it detects a potentially serious weather pattern, the NWS will notify local meteorologists in the area. Since you may not always be near a radio or television, you can stay up to date on weather changes by following your local news stations on social media, downloading the NWS app.

When you hear news that a storm watch or storm warning has been issued, keep in mind that the term being used describes both the immediacy and level of force of the storm.

What does "storm watch" mean?

A storm watch means that severe weather has not occurred yet, but upcoming weather conditions are expected to produce potentially dangerous weather, such as heavy rain, hail or strong gusts of wind. Because conditions can change quickly, the NWS wants to give you as much time as possible to safeguard your personal property and take shelter.

What does "storm warning" mean?

A storm warning indicates that meteorologists have already observed severe conditions. If you hear that a storm warning has been issued, it means potentially dangerous weather is imminent in or near your location. Depending on the type of weather warning, take appropriate action as quickly and safely as possible.

Types of storm watches and warnings

  • Severe Thunderstorms. A thunderstorm watch, which can be in effect for several hours, means weather conditions exist where severe thunderstorms can easily develop. A thunderstorm warning means current storm conditions can turn worse, including heavy rain and strong winds. Whether a watch or a warning, it's best to stay inside and away from windows.
  • April, May and June are the most active months of the year for tornadoes to occur. A tornado watch means severe weather, such as large hail or winds over 58 mph, has the potential to turn into tornadic activity. A tornado warning indicates that either a strong weather rotation could produce a tornado at any moment or that a funnel cloud has already been spotted. In either situation, you should seek shelter immediately and pay attention to local news updates.
  • Flash Floods. A flash flood watch signals that even if there isn't any standing water in your immediate area, you should be ready for those conditions to change at any moment. Flash flood watches can turn to warnings quickly, meaning that flooding of nearby bodies of water is imminent or already happening. In either case, move to higher ground as safely as possible, and stay out of the flood's path — for instance, don't try to drive your vehicle through large areas of pooling water.
  • Tropical Storms. The NWS tries to issue tropical storm watches as early as possible to allow enough time for emergency prep, including the possibility of evacuation. If you hear a warning, though, a tropical storm is expected within the next 36 hours, and you should take shelter immediately.
  • Whether there is a tropical storm expected to strengthen into a hurricane, or one that's already formed, a watch means a hurricane has the potential to impact your area. You should gather emergency supplies and be prepared to act quickly. Warnings are typically issued up to three days in advance — if one is issued, take direction from local authorities on whether to take shelter or to leave the area immediately.
  • Winter Storm. A winter storm watch is usually issued at least 24 hours in advance of the storm. It lets you know that while hazardous weather conditions are likely, the exact areas and timing may not be known yet. If a watch is upgraded to a winter storm warning, try to avoid traveling, as visibility and road conditions can become unsafe.

No matter the type of watches or warnings that may come your way, it's important to properly prepare for storm conditions in advance.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Severe Thunderstorms are Possible

1/22/2020 (Permalink)

Here are some definitions and guidelines set up by the National Weather Service to follow to help keep you and your family safe:

Severe Thunderstorm Watch - issued when conditions are favorable for the development of severe thunderstorms, people located in and around the watch area should keep an eye to the sky and listen to their NOAA weather radio all hazards or tune to local broadcast media for further weather information. The watch is intended to give you time to prepare, time to review safety rules.

Severe Thunderstorm Warning - issued when a severe thunderstorm has been detected by National Weather Service Doppler radar or a reliable report has been received. A warning is usually issued for portions of one or two counties, for an hour or less. If the warning includes your neighborhood or work place, you should take immediate action to protect your life and the lives of others. Severe thunderstorms can produce large hail and damaging winds. Tornadoes can and occasionally do accompany severe thunderstorms. Treat this warning the same as you would a tornado warning by taking the proper safety precautions.

  • The best defense against thunderstorms is to stay inside a sturdy building or shelter that can protect you from deadly lightning, large hail, damaging winds, flooding rain and tornadoes. Fortunately, thunderstorms typically do not last very long and will most often pass by your location in less than one hour.
  • Once in a shelter, stay away from windows and avoid electrical equipment and plumbing. Remember to bring pets inside. If there is time, secure loose objects outside as these objects often become dangerous flying debris in high winds.
  • Postpone outdoor activities until the storms have passed.
  • If caught outside, take shelter in a sturdy enclosed building or hard top automobile immediately. Avoid open spaces, isolated objects, high ground and metallic objects.
  • Get out of boats and away from bodies of water. Remember, if you can hear thunder, you are close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Stay Safe During a Winter Storm

1/22/2020 (Permalink)

Winter storms are dangerous. They can bring cold temperatures, power failures, loss of communication services, and icy roads. This can make being outside dangerous, so you should limit your time outside. Although staying indoors as much as possible can help reduce the risk of car crashes and falls on the ice, you may also face hazards inside your home.

Protect yourself and your loved ones during a winter storm. Take extra steps to make sure you heat your home safely, and follow the tips below.

Heat your home safely.

If you plan to use a wood stove, fireplace, or space heater, be extremely careful. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and remember these safety tips:

  • Turning on the stove for heat is not safe; have at least one of the following heat sources in case the power goes out:
    • Extra blankets, sleeping bags, and warm winter coats
    • Fireplace that is up to code with plenty of dry firewood or a gas log fireplace
    • Portable space heaters or kerosene heaters. Check with your local fire department to make sure that kerosene heaters are legal in your area.
  • Use electric space heaters with automatic shut-off switches and non-glowing elements. Make sure to keep them away from any flammable materials, like curtains or blankets.
  • Use fireplaces, wood stoves, or other combustion heaters only if they are properly vented to the outside and do not leak gas from the flue or exhaust into the indoor air space.
  • Have your heating system serviced by a qualified technician every year.
  • Do not burn paper in a fireplace.
  • Make sure you have proper ventilation if you must use a kerosene heater.
  • Use only the type of fuel your heater is designed to use—don’t substitute.
  • Keep heat sources, like space heaters, at least 3 feet away from drapes, furniture, or bedding. Never cover your space heater.
  • Never place a space heater on top of furniture or near water.
  • Never leave children unattended near a space heater.
  • Make sure that the cord of an electric space heater is not a tripping hazard, but do not run the cord under carpets or rugs.
  • Avoid using extension cords to plug in your space heater.
  • If your space heater has a damaged electrical cord or produces sparks, do not use it.

Light your home safely.

If there is a power failure:

  • Use battery-powered flashlights or lanterns rather than candles, if possible. Candles can lead to house fires.
    • If you do use candles, never leave lit candles unattended.

Use generators and other appliances safely.

  • Generators should be located at least 20 feet from any window, door, or vent and in a space where rain and snow will not reach them.
  • Protect yourself from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning by installing a battery-operated CO detector.
  • Never using generators, gas or charcoal grills, camp stoves, or similar devices inside your home, in basements, in garages, or near windows. The fumes are deadly.
  • Plug in appliances to the generator using individual heavy-duty, outdoor-rated extension cords.
  • Do not use the generator or appliances if they are wet.
  • Do not store gasoline indoors where the fumes could ignite.

Conserve heat.

  • Some gas-fueled heaters, such as vent-less gas fireplaces, require some ventilation. Otherwise, if you don’t need extra ventilation, keep as much heat as possible inside your home.
  • Avoid unnecessarily opening doors or windows.
  • Close off unneeded rooms.
  • Stuff towels or rags in cracks under doors.
  • Close draperies or cover windows with blankets at night.

Make sure babies and older adults stay warm.


Babies

Infants less than one year old should never sleep in a cold room because they lose body heat more easily than adults. Follow these tips to keep your baby safe and warm during the extreme cold:

  • Remove any pillows or other soft bedding. These can increase the risk of smothering and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
  • Dress babies in warmer clothing such as footed pajamas, one-piece wearable blankets, or sleep sacks.
  • Try to maintain a warm temperature inside your home. If you’re not able to keep your home warm, make temporary arrangements to stay elsewhere.
  • In an emergency, you can keep your baby warm using your own body heat. If you must sleep, take precautions to prevent rolling on or smothering your baby.


Older Adults

Older adults often make less body heat because of a slower metabolism and less physical activity. Check on elderly friends and neighbors often to make sure their homes are heated properly.

If you are over 65 years of age, check the temperature in your home often during extremely cold weather.

Keep a water supply.

Extreme cold can cause water pipes in your home to freeze and sometimes rupture or break. When you are expecting very cold or freezing temperatures:

  • Leave all water taps slightly open so they drip continuously.
  • Keep the temperature inside your home warm.
  • Allow heated air to reach pipes. For example, open cabinet doors beneath the kitchen and bathroom sinks.
  • If your pipes do freeze, do not thaw them with a torch. Thaw the pipes slowly with warm air from an electric hair dryer.
    • If you cannot thaw your pipes, or the pipes have broken open, use bottled water or get water from a neighbor’s home.
  • As an emergency measure, if no other water is available, snow can be melted for water. Bringing water to a rolling boil for one minute will kill most germs but won’t get rid of chemicals sometimes found in snow.

Eat well-balanced meals, and avoid alcoholic or caffeinated drinks.

Eating well-balanced meals will help you stay warmer. Do not drink alcoholic or caffeinated beverages—they cause your body to lose heat faster. Instead, drink warm, sweet beverages or broth to help keep yourself warm. If you have any dietary restrictions, ask your doctor.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Storm Tips

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

During the spring and summer months, storms that produce lightning, thunder, heavy rain, flooding, strong winds, tornadoes, and hail can occur. These storms are extremely dangerous and can appear suddenly with little warning and may only last a few minutes but have the strength and power to cause a great amount of damage.

Before A Thunderstorm

  • Check weather forecasts daily, purchase an all-hazard weather radio and have multiple ways to receive weather alerts.
  • Plan outdoor events near a secure shelter where people can go in the event of a storm.
  • Keep trees trimmed to prevent limbs from falling onto buildings, cars or people.
  • If hail or strong winds are expected, park vehicles under a shelter to avoid damage.
  • Make sure preparedness kits are portable for easy transport if evacuation is necessary. Preparedness kits should be tailored to household needs.
  • Bring pets indoors before a storm moves into the area. Sheds, dog houses, and garages do not provide ample protection from lightning, hail, high winds, and tornadoes.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove/East Niles is alert and ready for storm damage concerns. Call us today at 847-983-4468

Spring Storms

5/29/2019 (Permalink)

Spring storms strike no matter where you live.  Wind, rain, hail, tornadoes, and flooding can cause costly damage to your home.

Luckily there are ways to prevent potential costly damage to your home.

  1. Clean out gutters and downspouts

Clogged gutters, drains, and downspouts can lead to roof damage during a storm. Dirt and debris can cause water to be unable to flow away from the roofline, adding weight to your roof and potentially causing a roof collapse.

Before the spring storms strike, check your downspouts and gutters to ensure that winter storms haven’t created any blockages. While you’re up there, make sure that all connections are secure and that no repairs are necessary.

  1. Seal your windows, doors, and roof

Check the seals around your doors and windows. Look for loose screws and cracked caulking, and make repairs if necessary. If you live in an area that's prone to heavy storms, consider investing in impact-resistant windows to protect your home.

When you inspect your doors, check that there are three hinges on each to provide additional support. Then, make sure your threshold is screwed directly into your house, as opposed to only your door frame.

Next, inspect your roof. If you find any missing or damaged shingles, an area of sagging, or other damage, have your roof professionally inspected before a storm hits. Repairs can keep your home from experiencing severe damage due to a leaky roof.

  1. Search for cracks in the foundation

Even small cracks in your foundation or basement can put your home at risk of major damage during a spring storm. If water seeps in through the cracks, your home could be in danger of flooding. Furthermore, high winds can make existing cracks prone to widening, causing significant structural damage throughout the home. If you find or suspect any cracks in your foundation or basement, call a professional to seal them to help you prepare for a flood.

  1. Install a backflow valve in your basement to prevent sewage backup

Heavy rain can cause municipal sewers systems to become overtaxed, creating the possibility for excess water to flow backward through your home's sewer lines. Plumbing fixtures situated at the lowest points in your home may be particularly prone to sewer backup. Consider installing a sewer backflow valve to divert unexpected water away from your sewer lines and back to your city's sewage system.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Sudden Power Outage

6/15/2018 (Permalink)

Even small storms can cause damage.  The CDC offers these tips to help you prepare for and cope with sudden loss of power:

  • To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, use generators, pressure washers, grills, and similar items outdoors only. Generators should be used at least 20 feet away from your home.
  • Identify and throw away food that may not be safe to eat.
  • Check with local authorities to be sure your water is safe.
  • In hot weather, stay cool and drink plenty of fluids to prevent heat-related illness.
  • In cold weather, wear layers of clothing, which help to keep in body heat.
  • Avoid downed power lines, if a power line falls on a car, you should stay inside the vehicle.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Returning Home

6/15/2018 (Permalink)

After natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods, be aware that your house may be contaminated with mold or sewage, which can cause health risks for your family.

When You First Reenter Your Home

  • If you have standing water in your home and can turn off the main power from a dry location, then go ahead and turn off the power, even if it delays cleaning. If you must enter standing water to access the main power switch, then call an electrician to turn it off. NEVER turn power on or off yourself or use an electric tool or appliance while standing in water.
  • Have an electrician check the house’s electrical system before turning the power on again.
  • If the house has been closed up for several days, enter briefly to open doors and windows to let the house air out for awhile (at least 30 minutes) before you stay for any length of time.
  • If your home has been flooded and has been closed up for several days, presume your home has been contaminated with mold.
  • If your home has been flooded, it also may be contaminated with sewage.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today –847-983-4468

Steps to Take Before a Spring Storm Strikes

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Spring storms strike no matter where you live.  Wind, rain, hail, tornadoes, and flooding can cause costly damage to your home.

Luckily there are ways to prevent potential costly damage to your home.

1. Clean out gutters and downspouts

Clogged gutters, drains, and downspouts can lead to roof damage during a storm. Dirt and debris can cause water to be unable to flow away from the roofline, adding weight to your roof and potentially causing a roof collapse.

Before the spring storms strike, check your downspouts and gutters to ensure that winter storms haven’t created any blockages. While you’re up there, make sure that all connections are secure and that no repairs are necessary.

2. Seal your windows, doors, and roof

Check the seals around your doors and windows. Look for loose screws and cracked caulking, and make repairs if necessary. If you live in an area that's prone to heavy storms, consider investing in impact-resistant windows to protect your home.

When you inspect your doors, check that there are three hinges on each to provide additional support. Then, make sure your threshold is screwed directly into your house, as opposed to only your door frame.

Next, inspect your roof. If you find any missing or damaged shingles, an area of sagging, or other damage, have your roof professionally inspected before a storm hits. Repairs can keep your home from experiencing severe damage due to a leaky roof.

3. Search for cracks in the foundation

Even small cracks in your foundation or basement can put your home at risk of major damage during a spring storm. If water seeps in through the cracks, your home could be in danger of flooding. Furthermore, high winds can make existing cracks prone to widening, causing significant structural damage throughout the home. If you find or suspect any cracks in your foundation or basement, call a professional to seal them to help you prepare for a flood.

4. Install a backflow valve in your basement to prevent sewage backup

Heavy rain can cause municipal sewers systems to become overtaxed, creating the possibility for excess water to flow backward through your home's sewer lines. Plumbing fixtures situated at the lowest points in your home may be particularly prone to sewer backup. Consider installing a sewer backflow valve to divert unexpected water away from your sewer lines and back to your city's sewage system.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

Floods

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Know your Risk

What

Flooding is a temporary overflowing of water onto land that is normally dry. Flooding may happen with only a few inches of water, or it may cover a house to the rooftop. There are many possible causes of floods including heavy rain or snowmelt, coastal storms and storm surge, waterway overflow from being blocked with debris or ice, or overflow of levees, dams, or waste water systems, Flooding can occur slowly over many days or happen very quickly with little or no warning, called flash floods.

Where

Flooding can happen in any U.S. state or territory. It is particularly important to be prepared for flooding if you live in a low-lying area near a body of water, such as near a river, stream, or culvert; along a coast; or downstream from a dam or levee.

When

Flooding can occur during every season, but some areas of the country are at greater risk at certain times of the year. Coastal areas are at greater risk for flooding during hurricane season (i.e., June to November), while the Midwest is more at risk in the spring and during heavy summer rains. Ice jams occur in the spring in the Northeast and Northwest. Even the deserts of the Southwest are at risk during the late summer monsoon season.

Basic Safety Tips

  • Turn Around, Don’t Drown! ®
  • Avoid walking or driving through flood waters.
  • Do not drive over bridges that are over fast-moving floodwaters. Floodwaters can scour foundation material from around the footings and make the bridge unstable.
  • Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • If there is a chance of flash flooding, move immediately to higher ground.
  • If floodwaters rise around your car but the water is not moving, abandon the car and move to higher ground. Do not leave the car and enter moving water.
  • Avoid camping or parking along streams, rivers, and creeks during heavy rainfall. These areas can flood quickly and with little warning.

Source: READY.gov

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

What's the Difference

5/15/2018 (Permalink)

Spring rains can bring flooding, it is always good to know the difference between a flood watch and a flood warning.

Flood Watch = “Be Aware.” Conditions are right for flooding to occur in your area.

Steps to Take

  • Turn on your TV/radio. You will receive the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.
  • Know where to go. You may need to reach higher ground quickly and on foot.
  • Build or restock your emergency preparedness kit. Include a flashlight, batteries, cash, and first aid supplies.

Prepare Your Home

  • Bring in outdoor furniture and move important indoor items to the highest possible floor. This will help protect them from flood damage.
  • Disconnect electrical appliances and do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water. You could be electrocuted.
  • If instructed, turn off your gas and electricity at the main switch or valve. This helps prevent fires and explosions.

Flood Warning = "Take Action!"  Flooding is either happening or will happen shortly.

Steps to Take

  • Move immediately to higher ground or stay on high ground.
  • Evacuate if directed.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 847-983-4468

When Storms or Floods hit Morton Grove or East Niles, SERVPRO is ready!

3/7/2018 (Permalink)

Our highly trained crews are ready to respond 24/7 to storm or flood damage in Morton Grove & East Niles.

SERVPRO of Morton Grove / East Niles specializes in storm and flood damage restoration.  Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.

Faster Response

Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

When storms hit Morton Grove & East Niles, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams Click Here that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today (847) 983-4468