Recent Storm Damage Posts

Storm Safety Tips

10/27/2021 (Permalink)

There is some pointer for flood safety tips.

  • You can check in Fema with the link (FEMA Flood Map Service Center | Welcome!) to know the flood zones in your area.
  • Make an emergency plan with your household. This includes any meeting places and contacting information.
  • Make sure you keep all your important documents in a waterproof container.
  • Listen to the official when they recommend evacuating.
  • It’s recommended to listen to the EAS, NOAA radio or local alerting system for any news pertaining to any dangers or recommendations.
  • You should never walk, drive, or swim through any flood water. Also, you should avoid any bridges that are on top of fast-moving water.
  • If you happen to be trapped inside of a building that is flooring its advised to move to the highest level and signal for help.
  • If you’re in your car and water is surrounding, you should go on the roof of your car but if the water is moving fast it recommended to stay in the car.
  • It is always recommended to wait until authorities give you the ok to return
  • Ba on the look out while cleaning up for hazards such as electrical wire, mold, and animals.
  • If using a generator is should be located outside to prevent any carbon monoxide poisoning

Wildfire Prevention

10/5/2021 (Permalink)

There has been an increase of size and intensity to wildfires. In the past years fire season has also lengthened.  With the increase of wildfires brings a risk to human health and safety and financial impact.

You might ask yourself what are the primary threats to homes during a wildfire?

Majority of homes ignite in a wildfire by embers and or small flames.  A burning piece of airborne wood and/or vegetation are called embers. Embers can be carried more than a mile through the wind and can cause spot fires and ignite homes, debris, and other objects.

The methods for homeowners to prepare their homes to withstand ember attacks and minimize the likelihood of flames or surface fire touching the home or any attachments are listed below. 

Immediate zone

This is 0-5’ of the homes furthest attached exterior point. It recommended to start with the house first then on to landscaping.

  • Clean out any dead leaves, pine needles or debris from roofs and gutters to prevent them from catching embers.
  • Replace or repair any loose or missing shingles or roof tiles.
  • Installing 1/8 inch metal mesh screening on vents that will reduce embers from passing through.
  • Clean the debris from the exterior attic vents and install 1/8 inch metal mesh screening to help reduce embers.
  • Make sure to repair or replace damaged or loose window screens and any broken windows Screen or box-in areas below patios and decks with wire mesh to prevent debris and combustible materials from accumulating.
  • Move any flammable material away from wall exteriors – mulch, flammable plants, leaves and needles, firewood piles – anything that can burn. Remove anything stored underneath decks or porches. 

Intermediate zone

5-30’ from the furthest exterior point of the home. For the landscaping/hardscaping creating breaks that can help influence and decrease fire behavior

  • Clearing the vegetation from under a large stationary propane tank.
  • Create a fuel break with driveways, walkways/paths, patios, and decks.
  • Keep your lawns and native grasses mowed to a height of four inches.
  • Remove ladder fuels (vegetation under trees) so a surface fire cannot reach the crowns.  Prune trees up to six to ten feet from the ground; for shorter trees do not exceed 1/3 of the overall tree height.
  • Space trees to have a minimum of eighteen feet between crowns with the distance increasing with the percentage of slope.
  • Tree placement should be planned to ensure the mature canopy is no closer than ten feet to the edge of the structure.
  • Tree and shrubs in this zone should be limited to small clusters of a few each to break up the continuity of the vegetation across the landscape.

Extended zone

30-100 feet, out to 200 feet. Landscaping – the goal here is not to eliminate fire but to interrupt fire’s path and keep flames smaller and on the ground.

  • Dispose of heavy accumulations of ground litter/debris.
  • Remove any dead plant and tree material.
  • Remove small conifers that maybe growing between mature trees.
  • Remove any vegetation adjacent to storage sheds or other outbuildings within this area.
  • Trees 30 to 60 feet from the home should have at the least 12 feet between canopy tops.
  • Trees 60 to 100 feet from the home should have at the least 6 feet between the canopy tops.

You can find more information about fire prevention at NFPA website.

Are you prepared for a storm?

2/17/2021 (Permalink)

With most of the nation experiencing Storm like conditions now is a great time to prepare in case of a storm. In advance of a storm, it is recommended to weatherproof your home by doing the following.

  • Although this is not guaranteed to prevent freezing you should insulate any water lines that run along the exterior walls.
  • Windows and doors should be caulked and weather-stripped.
  • Have your walls and attic insulated.
  • Repair any roof leaks and remove any tree branches that can possibly fall onto your home and or other structure during a storm.

It is recommended to have your chimney and or flue inspected each year. Especially if you plan on using your fireplace and or wood stove for emergency heating. Also, if you use a fireplace, wood stove, or kerosene heater you should have a battery-operated smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector near the area to be heated. Please make sure to check the batteries in the smoke and carbon monoxide detector at the lease twice a year. Here at SERVPRO Thousand Oaks we wish you safe winter.


9/28/2020 (Permalink)

One of the country’s most common natural disasters is a flood since it can happen anywhere. The greatest threat to flooding is in low-lying areas, near water, downstream from dams. Flooding can even be caused by the smallest stream, creek beds, or drains.  Extended periods of rain or heavy rain can cause the possibility of flooding.  A flash flood can develop from a few minutes to a few hours. It is important to listen to your local weather report for flooding information.  Here are a few recommendations for before, during, and after flooding.

Before Flooding:

  • It is recommended to have flood insurance if you are in a prone flooding area. Please be advised this might be an additional policy to your homeowner policy.
  • Furnace, water heater, or electrical panel should not be in an area in your home that can be flooded. It is recommended to raise any of these items if possible.
  • It is recommended if you have a basement that is sealed with a waterproof compound.
  • In case of a flash flood be prepared to evacuate if it is advised.
  • Have an emergency supply kit ready that includes water.

During Flooding:

  • Seek higher ground immediately.
  • Stay out of the flood water if you are able.
  • Avoid any moving water.
  • Although it is not recommended to walk through the water if you must, make sure us a stick for firmness.
  • Do not drive into a flooded area.
  • Avid down power lines.

After Flooding

  • Wait for your local authorities to say it is ok to return to your residence.
  • Make sure not to drink or cook with tap water until local authorities say it is safe.
  • Be advised that although floodwater receded it may have left weaken roadways.
  • Be cautious when entering a build as it may have hidden structural damage.
  • Any item that got wet should be cleaned and disinfected.


9/24/2020 (Permalink)

A landside can be caused by earthquakes, storms, fire, and human modifications of land. Unfortunately, landslides are the most dangerous when it occurs quickly and with little notice. A landslide happens when masses of rock, earth, or debris move down a slope. Slopes after a wildfire can cause debris flow for several years. Most landslides are caused by lengthy rain that has saturated a slope, but it can also start within minutes from heavy rain. Some ways that will help prevent floodwater or mud by use of sandbags, retaining walls, or k-rails but cannot guarantee 100 percent. It is suggested to sign up for emergency alerts and monitor your local weather in which you are near a wildfire burn area. If you are expected severe weather in a burn area, make sure to watch out and listen to warning signs such as rushing water, trees cracking or boulders knocking together. It is advised that during a storm that can cause a landslide it is best to stay alert and awake. If your house might have been affected by flood water give SERVPRO a call to inspect your house for any possible water damage. 

Flooding Damage

3/21/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States and affecting every state? Here in California we now must deal with posable flash flood in the recent burn areas. It is the most common thought that your insurance will cover any water loss. This is not true everyone policy is different.  We recommend if you’re concern to talk to insurance agent to see what type of flooding is covered.  They may recommend having additional covered for flooding to cover a lost such as ground water. Here at SERVPRO we recommend taking precaution before a storm hit. Make sure you clean and gutters and downspouts. If you live in area that tends to flood, make sure you have sand bags and divert the water away from your house. Make sure a professional roof checks for any possible damage that can create water intrusion. If you are unfortunately are unable to prevent any water intrusion, make sure to call SERVPRO as soon as you notice to prevent further damage. Just a inch of water can cause up to thousands of dollar damages.