Your Business & Fire: What To Do If The Unthinkable Occurs
A house fire can be an upsetting experience. Beyond losing precious items, the aftermath of blazing fire can leave you unsettled and frightened. Once the fire is out, you may immediately think about calling commercial fire restoration and cleanup services, but before you do, consider these steps.
8 Steps to Follow After a Commercial Building Fire
- Contact your insurance company and request a meeting. If possible, you may want an adjuster on-site during the first walkthrough. If the adjuster cannot visit the site immediately, take pictures.
- Ask fire officials when it is safe to re-enter the building. The fire may be extinguished, but without knowing the amount of destruction to the structure, you may not be aware of where the safety zone is.
- Request a copy of the fire report from the fire department. Not only can it have pertinent information for your insurance claim, but it may also have information to help you identify what data is still missing and possibly necessary for fire restoration specialists.
- To prevent possible looting, or additional vandal destruction, secure the building. Most fire insurance specialists can offer information on how best to protect the structure.
- Contact a commercial fire cleanup and restoration crew to assess the damage. Professional cleaners can help with water, soot, and smoke cleaning, as well as sanitizing the damaged areas.
- If emergency personnel turned the electricity off, empty refrigerators and freezers. After emptying them, leave the doors open for air circulation.
- If water was used to put out the flames, the wiring might be damaged. Heat and water may also have damaged appliances. Before turning on lights, appliances, or HVAC systems, check with repair services.
- If the damage is extensive, contact utility companies regarding service. Suspending utilities during restoration is often necessary.
Fire restoration can be a big operation whether it involves minor damage or extensive rebuilding. By following the above steps, you may find the process less stressful or overwhelming. You can also protect your building from additional damage.