Following a house fire, you may be tempted to re-enter your home to collect your personal belongings, assess the damage or even attempt to get started on the restoration process.
However, fire damage structures are full of hidden dangers and it is important that you wait until your home is deemed safe for re-entry by a trained professional before taking your first step back inside.
If you don’t, you could easily be exposing yourself to one of the following dangers lingering within a fire damaged building.
Airborne Dangers Such as Smoke, Soot and… Mold Spores?
By entering a fire damaged home without the proper facemask or respiratory filters, you’re exposing yourself to all of the airborne irritants caused by the fire and water used to put it out.
While smoke & soot are obvious airborne dangers present in a house fire, mold and mold spores are not exactly dangers that immediately come to mind and yet they are very much a threat within 24-48 hours of a house fire.
Therefore it is best to keep children, expecting mothers, seniors, smokers and anyone with a pre-existing lung or cardiovascular problem away from fire damaged homes to avoid smoke, soot or mold induced complications.
Hazards Caused by Water Damage
Aside from paving the way for mold colonies to develop, the water used to extinguish a house fire can cause additional safety risks. Not watching where you step could lead to a nasty fall if you step on a slippery (wet) floor and water saturated walls present a window of opportunity for an electric shock or two.
If your home has suffered from fire & water damage, don’t bother using any of the electronics exposed to the blaze and contact the power company to cut off the electricity while the water damage is being addressed. Of course, you will want to coordinate the power suspension with the needs of your selected water & fire restoration company.
Risks Imposed by Ash & Debris
Exposed wiring, nails, broken glass and fragments of wood, metal and plastic – your fire damaged home will be the perfect place for you to cut, burn or injure yourself in one way or another.
Aside from that, there will be pockets of ash for you to step into or kick up, fueling the amount of cancer causing airborne toxins in the air, which may include asbestos, arsenic or even lead.
As you can tell, there are plenty of reasons to avoid entering your home or property following a house fire. To ensure that your personal safety – or the safety of your family – is not put in jeopardy, it is best that you consult the expertise of a professional restoration company to have your belongings removed and your home properly cleaned, repaired and restored to its previous glory.
ServiceMaster Absolute offers packout, water damage restoration and fire remediation services to the San Diego area, so feel free to give them a call if your property has recently suffered from fire or water damage. They offer 24-hour emergency service and have a team of certified and friendly professionals that are always ready to help when disaster strikes.
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