The Aftermath of Devastating Storms: How Long Could You Feel the Effects?
Hurricanes are catastrophic, causing severe damage to homes and businesses. Relief efforts often cease long before an area has recovered and people are left with only local resources to recover. So many homes are affected by exponential water damage that in the recovery process, you may begin to witness the appearance of mold and mildew within your home.
Contaminated materials that create mold exposure can cause serious health problems. Many people who suffer from allergies or respiratory issues are especially sensitive to molds. The prevention of mold can be difficult and will require the assistance of a trained professional.
How to get rid of mold growth that follows devastating storms?
Hurricanes are catastrophic and bring the potential for severe damage to homes and businesses from storm surge, high winds, debris, tornadoes, and rain/flooding. Preliminary preparation is always recommended, but what does one do in the aftermath of a tropical storm? In addition to the high humidity found in storm-affected areas, a water-soaked interior is an ideal habitat for a mold colony to grow and thrive.
Dangers of mold growth
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) warns that exposure to mold can cause symptoms such as nasal stuffiness, eye irritation, wheezing, or skin irritation. Groups who are especially vulnerable are pregnant women, infants, the elderly, and those with pre-existing health conditions such as emphysema or lung cancer. Severe reactions can include asthma attacks, fever, shortness of breath, and mold infection in the lungs.
Mold removal is not an easy task
On the surface, mold remediation may seem easy to get rid of, but that is certainly not the case. For one, mold spores are invisible to the naked eye. And they begin to grow in no more than a few hours and spread as quickly as they can. It goes without saying that it may take days or even weeks before homeowners can begin to clean up their homes following a devastating flood.
But, by that time, it may be a little too late; mold may have colonized the upholstered furniture, occupied the home surfaces (walls and ceilings), or invaded the duct system, etc. Naturally, any attempt to clean mold growth on this scale on your own may not only result in spreading the spores even further but may also drag out the cleanup process.
With Jenkins Restorations, mold remediation always involves a mold inspection. Cleaning up existing mold while avoiding exposure to oneself as well as homeowners. We also prevent new growth by addressing the moisture source. Based on calculations of the contamination area, we determine the area we will be working in. Some examples of steps we take to take care of the mold:
- Repair the water problem. This will help prevent new mold spores from growing.
- Isolate the contaminated area. Close all doors and windows between the contaminated area and other rooms of the home
- Suppress dust caused by mold spores in the home.
- Remove all wet and mold-damaged porous materials.
- Place materials in plastic bags.
- All non-porous materials and wood surfaces that are moldy are cleaned.
- Perform visibility test – all areas should be visibly free of contamination and debris — no dust and dirt means no mold.
- Cleaned materials should be dried to allow leftover moisture to evaporate. To speed up the drying process, we use fans, dehumidifiers or raise the indoor air temperature.
- All materials that were moved are replaced or repaired.
Professional mold removal services make sense
In order to exterminate mold and restore the air quality and safety of your home or business, it is recommended to secure the services of a professional mold mitigation and remediation company. A professional company with documented experience and in-depth understanding of current EPA standards will make sure that the cleanup is handled correctly the first time.
Not only are your family’s health and safety on the line, but inappropriate mold mitigation may negatively affect the resale value of your home. If you are uncertain of whether there is mold growing in your home or how extensive the water damage is (even one-inch of standing water can cause damage), a professional company can also evaluate your situation, make recommendations and provide an estimate.
The damage from hurricanes and tropical storms can bring about catastrophic property damage. Don’t let these forces of nature rob you and your family of your health, too.