What to do during a flood cleanup
Flooding is certainly one of the most dangerous disasters.
Apart from the destruction of property, habitat, nd scenery, flooding can cause human fatalities too. But once the waters subside and the situation reverts to normal, a cleanup exercise ensues. Reverting the house back to its original state is one hard task.
Cleaning up after a flood requires the right attitude, a good mental state and above all, the right tools. Items like a pair of safety glasses, boots, gloves and a safety mask are essential for such an undertaking. Other than the fact that they come in handy for the job, they serve as protective wear for the one doing the clean-up exercise. But more than getting the right tools for the job, it's also important to keep track of the following steps to make sure your flood cleanup is successful.
- Do you need clearance for a flood cleanup?
- Disable power sources
- Pack and get organized
- Get a water damage specialist
It would be prudent to get a go-ahead from the authorities in your area, including the meteorological department, before returning to your house for a cleanup. This is because, just like earthquakes, floods also have aftershocks. Make sure that the time is right and the situation is calm before you make a move.
Disable power source
After a flooding incident, it is likely that the power connections within your house might have suffered a great deal of damage. Being a good conductor of electricity, spiked water could cause human injury and even death in severe cases. Caution should, therefore, be exercised; the only sure way is to completely cut out the power supply from your main switch.
For dark areas inside the house, it may be advisable to use a handheld torch for illumination.
With the aid of large plastic bags, pack up all wearables including shoes and clothing that may be soaked up. Get them outside, sort them out and decide on what can be salvaged and which to discard.
Next would be all linen materials: beddings, towels, garments and mattresses. Wash them and have them dried. For this lot, it may not be a wise idea to discard as most may be expensive items.
Thereafter, gather all utensils; which will certainly be dirty and infected. It would be wise that you soak them in water with a strong detergent that has pathogen- (also known as disease-causing microorganisms) killing properties. Let it soak for at least two days, ensuring to change the water daily. As for the furniture, disassemble them if they are detachable then clean and sun-dry them thoroughly to prevent rotting of the wood.
Water damage specialist
The most intricate and perhaps delicate part of any flood cleanup would be electronics. Owing to the sensitive nature of electric appliances, it would be prudent for you to seek advice from water damage specialist on how best to dispose of or salvage these items. He or she can also provide advice on how to best prevent floods in the future.
It's also important that you contact a water damage remediation specialist for expert advice on whether to consider relocation in the event that the floods were due to the result of natural causes.