So You Just Had a Home Fire
You can never really know if your life will be affected by a fire or not. Of course, there are many things you can and should do to reduce the chances of a fire occurring in your life. But what if a fire does occur in your home? What do you need to know in that moment? The chance of your having time afterward to research and understand what just happened is relatively low, so we wanted to share a few things now that you can tuck away in the back of your mind, just in case that day ever arrives.
What to Know Immediately after a Fire
1. Damage comes from more than just the fire. Your belongings that were spared from the actual fire may very likely be soggy and wet or have suffered smoke damage. These items will need to be carefully cleaned, not just dried.
2. Firefighters may have had to cut additional holes into your walls or roof and knock out windows. This helps slow the fire’s growth and vents the thick, dark smoke out of the house.
3. Your food and medicine is no longer good. Do not eat, drink, or ingest anything that been affected by or even near the fire, smoke, or water that occurred in your home.
4. Fires can start again even after they are out. Don’t re-enter your property until the fire department has said it is safe to go in. The firefighters will make sure that the utilities are safe to use (gas, electricity, etc.). If they are not safe, they will be disconnected by the firefighters.
5. You’ll be away from your home. Make sure to inform the police that you’ll be away, as well as contact a restoration company (Duckstein Restoration is a great solution) to board-up and tarp your home to prevent further damage and crime.
6. How you report your fire to your insurance company is important. Contacting a company that specializes in restoration management will allow enable you to have someone to help walk you through the entire claim process, as well.
7. Be sure to work with people you can trust. Some companies aren’t as honest as they pretend to be, so it’s always a good idea to look at how long the company has been in business and choose a company with the professionalism and experience required to help guide you through this exhausting process.
Henry Duckstein Jr.