Experiencing a flood can be overwhelming and stressful, but taking the right immediate steps can make a significant difference in ensuring safety and minimising damage. At Trauma Clean 24 Seven, we understand the urgency and complexity of post-flood recovery. Here’s a comprehensive guide on what to do right after a flood hits, including essential flood and sewage cleanup tips.

1. Ensure Personal Safety First

If local authorities advise evacuation, leave your home immediately. Ensure you have an emergency kit with essentials such as water, food, medications, important documents, and a change of clothes.

Floodwaters can be extremely hazardous. They may contain sewage, chemicals, and debris. Avoid walking or driving through floodwaters. Just six inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.

If it is safe to do so, turn off the electricity, gas, and water supply to prevent potential hazards such as electrocution or gas leaks. If you cannot safely access the circuit breaker or gas valve, contact the utility company for assistance.

2. Document the Damage

Document the extent of the damage with photos and videos. This documentation will be crucial when filing insurance claims. Capture as much detail as possible, including structural damage, water levels, and affected personal belongings.

List damaged items, noting their value and condition. This inventory will also assist with insurance claims and help you prioritise what needs to be addressed first.

3. Contact Your Insurance Company

Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to report the damage. Provide them with the documentation you’ve gathered and follow their instructions for filing a claim.

Discuss the details of your coverage with your insurance agent. Understand what is covered under your policy, including temporary housing, repairs, and replacement of damaged items.

4. Prevent Further Damage

Begin removing standing water as soon as it is safe. Use buckets, pumps, or wet-dry vacuums to extract water. Be cautious of contaminated water and wear protective gear.

Open windows and doors to increase airflow and help dry out your home. Use fans and dehumidifiers to speed up the drying process and reduce the risk of mould growth.

Move undamaged items to a dry area to prevent further damage. Elevate furniture and appliances on blocks or move them to higher ground.

5. Clean and Disinfect

Clear out any debris, mud, and damaged materials from your home. This includes carpets, drywall, and insulation that have been soaked by floodwaters.

Clean and disinfect all surfaces that have come into contact with floodwater. Use a solution of bleach and water (1 cup of bleach to 1 gallon of water) to kill bacteria and prevent mould growth.

Mould can develop within 24-48 hours after a flood. Inspect your home for signs of mould and take immediate action to remove it. Use mould-specific cleaners and consult professionals if the infestation is extensive.

6. Seek Professional Help

Consider hiring a professional flood and sewage cleanup service like Trauma Clean 24 Seven. Professionals have the expertise, equipment, and experience to handle hazardous materials, thoroughly clean and disinfect your home, and restore it to a safe condition.

Engage a structural engineer or building inspector to assess the integrity of your home. Floods can compromise the foundation, walls, and overall structure, making it unsafe to occupy.

7. Stay Informed and Plan for the Future

Stay informed about local weather updates, road conditions, and safety advisories. This information can help you make informed decisions and stay safe.

Consider implementing flood-prevention measures to reduce future risks. This includes installing sump pumps, backflow valves, and elevating electrical systems. Create an emergency plan for your family and ensure everyone knows what to do in case of another flood.

Conclusion

Facing a flood can be daunting, but taking immediate, informed actions can significantly reduce the damage and ensure your safety. At Trauma Clean 24 Seven, we’re here to help you navigate the aftermath with professional flood and sewage cleanup services and expert advice. Stay safe, act swiftly, and don’t hesitate to reach out for assistance.

We offer a range of specialist and biohazard cleaning services. From hoarding clean up to needle sweeps and crime scene cleaning. For further information on any of our services please do not hesitate to contact us on 02036408247 or email at [email protected]