With six major fires lighting up the southern California coast, it seems to have hit all at once. LA, San Diego, Ventura, and Santa Barbara Counties are the most affected, and there have been closures of main freeways including the US 101 and 405. For updates on fires near you, look to these sources: Continue Reading →
For this post, we’ll start with a trivia question:
Which of these circumstances would be covered by insurance as an “act of God”? (Read to the end to find your answer!)
- Lighting striking and burning down multiple houses
- Fire set by an arsonist
Sometimes as much as you can try to prepare for the unpreparable, natural disasters– so-called “acts of God”– strike us unawares and unprepared. Fire, lightning, floods, and earthquakes– all might strike at a moments notice, and leave us with a crushed roof or burned down home. A Louisiana court (a state faced with its fair share of natural disasters) gave this definition of an act of God: Continue Reading →
Whatever happened to the promised El Niño? It’s already the end of May (and no April showers)– did we just miss it on its way through? Unfortunately, no. El Niño seems to have passed right over the dry and thirsty dusts of California. The looming threat of the 2016 El Niño had been predicted to reach levels such as the storms in 1997 and ‘98 which left Californians with $883 million damages statewide. Not only frustrating to our drought-stricken state, many residents of California spent their winter scrambling in preparation for the big storms– purchasing everything from rain boots to flood insurance. Now, we stand with our rain boots dry and in-hand, with a flood insurance policy we don’t seem to need. Continue Reading →
In our drought-plagued state, rain is something of a novelty; out come the coats, scarves and boots as we enthusiastically embrace the “winter season.” The ideal of rain aligns with scampering through puddles, the kids twirling under the droplets with umbrellas; curling up by the fire with a good book and a cup of coffee as the rain patters on the roof.
As lovely as these images are, El Niño brings another dimension to the winter months of December and January. Southern California hasn’t experienced El Niño since 1997; the conditions of which led to more than $30 billion in damages worldwide. This El Niño in particular is forecasted to feature the strongest storms ever recorded. Continue Reading →
It’s something we all dread hearing—the sound of water running when you haven’t turned anything on. No one’s taking a shower. There’s no laundry load in the wash. So what is making that noise? And your worst fears are confirmed—you have a slab leak, a burst pipe or a overenthusiastic diswasher that has flooded your kitchen.
A water leak or flood can be devastating to the contents of your home or business. But sadly, the damage doesn’t end there. If you don’t get the property cleaned properly, you’re likely to have mold. And mold remediation is usually three times more expensive than water damage clean up. And, with all the wildfires in California right now, fire damage is a very real and terrifying possibility. Continue Reading →
The drought is real. We’ve had mandatory water restrictions placed on us by the California Governor, who directed the State Water Resources Control Board to implement 25 percent reductions in the use of potable (read: drinkable) water. So how are we going to do it?
The Environmental Protection Agency reports that 30 percent of the 26 billion gallons of water consumed daily in the United States is used outdoors, mainly for irrigation. Do you realize that the typical suburban lawn consumes 10,000 gallons of water each year? That’s not counting any rainwater! There are many ways to re-landscape your yard to replace your lawn, but if you have children or pets, you might miss that expanse of green. Continue Reading →
Did you know that almost 95 percent of wildfires are started because of human carelessness, mistakes or intent? It’s true. And another fact for you: There have been over 1,100 fires this year already, and that’s double the average.
So how can we help prevent wildfires? Smokey the Bear isn’t the only one trying to get us to be more careful. All of the emergency services, especially the fire departments, and California’s Governor are hoping to build awareness around fire safety with Wildfire Awareness Week. Continue Reading →
Few things make you feel more helpless than a disaster in your home. And when water comes gushing out from under your washing machine or toilet, it’s not always easy to think straight.
We’re here to help you in all of these accidental and damaging incidents, and ideally before they happen so we can help you prevent them from happening!
Here is a list of what you should and shouldn’t do when you experience a home-based water emergency:
1– Safety Is Your First Priority
- Check to see if you’re standing on wet carpet or floors before you touch or use electrical equipment or appliances. This also goes for unplugging the appliance that caused the water damage.
- Even if you are using electrical equipment in a dry area, if it is or was water damaged, do not use it.
2– Stop Water Flow and Prevent Further Damage
- Is the water source a burst or leaking pipe? Look for the closest shut-off valve and shut it off.
- Is the water coming through a leak in the roof or broken windows? Use plastic sheeting or tarps to cover the roof or windows. Weather conditions could make this difficult, so please be safe on the roof or a ladder.
3– Take Note of the Damage
- Many of us now have smartphones, and it’s a good way to document any damage by taking photos and videos. If you don’t have one, try to borrow one, or use other cameras as available.
- Don’t throw away damaged items! The claims representative is likely to want to inspect them to assess damage.
- If temporary repairs are necessary, keep a list of what was done and any receipts associated with the repairs.
4– Cleaning Up the Damage
- Don’t leave wet items in their place; move them to a dry area.
- Use towels to mop and blot up as much water as possible.
- Use coasters, wood blocks, plastic or aluminum foil under furniture legs resting on wet carpet.
- If an area rug is wet, remove it, as the dye can stain flooring, carpeting and even wood floors.
- Use fans to circulate air and start the drying process, but only use fans in a dry area safe for electrical appliances.
5– Repair the Damage
- Once you’ve reported your claim, use a reputable water damage restoration company to fix the damage.
- If the damage is less than 10 square feet in size, you might be able to repair the damage yourself, according to the EPA.
- But they also say that water restoration work should be done within 24-48 hours to prevent mold damage, which can be much more costly to repair than water damage.
- Also, if the water that caused the incident was contaminated or from sewage, you need a professional to clean it up. Do not attempt it yourself.
Still have questions? Call us! That’s what we’re here for. 714-838-1911
Copyright: / 123RF Stock Photo
Just over 15 years ago, people were freaking out. People were turning into survivalists, stockpiling food and supplies in their garages and storage cupboards. And on January 1, 2000….nothing happened.
Many of you might remember the Y2K predictions, the ones that said every computer and electronic device would implode and we’d all be sent back to the dark ages. Those predictions managed to get a lot of people in a flurry of preparedness, which wasn’t really a bad thing, even if nothing catastrophic happened. Because, let’s face it, we live in a place where catastrophe can strike at any moment, in the form of an earthquake, forest fire or landslide. Continue Reading →
Many of us “regular” drivers, meaning those of us who drive cars, SUVs, minivans, sports cars and pickup trucks daily, think about the 2 million big-rig trucks driven around America each day. These trucks deliver goods, transport food, gas and other products, and also are involved in crashes that kill almost 4,000 people a year. The number of people killed in large-truck crashes, including the truck drivers, pedestrians and occupants of the vehicles that the trucks collided with, has increased by 17 percent since 2009. One of the main issues is driver fatigue.
For instance, there was the crash in June that injured comedian Tracy Morgan (allegedly the result of driver fatigue), and another in September that killed four members of a softball team. Then there was the recent 193-vehicle pileup in Kalamazoo, Michigan that involved 76 semi trucks. Continue Reading →