Recent Fire Damage Posts

Holiday Safety Tips to Prevent Fires in Your Lower Manhattan Home

12/13/2022 (Permalink)

‘Tis the season for mistletoes, holiday music, and mall madness. However, ‘tis also the season for house fires.

Although the holiday season is desirable and warms your hearts, it’s important to remember the hazards that may come with it. SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan wants to provide you with holiday safety tips to prevent fires in your Lower Manhattan home.

Space Heaters

Whether you have a space heater from the 90s that is still kicking or a new, visually appealing fireplace heater, they should never be unattended. Here are some tips to help you avoid a fire due to your heater.

  • Never turn on a heater you suspect is damaged.
  • Before use, inspect the heater, power cord, and plug for any damage.
  • Never leave the heater operating while unattended, or while you’re sleeping.
  • Keep materials such as beds, sofas, curtains, papers, and clothes at least 3 feet from the front, top, sides, and back of the heater.
  • Make sure the heater plug fits tightly into the outlet - if not, don’t use this outlet. Poor electrical connections are another leading cause of fires.
  • Ensure that the heater is placed on a stable, level surface and located where it will not be knocked over.

Christmas Trees

One of the deadliest types of fires that occurs during the holiday season involves live Christmas trees. Here are some tips to help you avoid Christmas tree fires.

  • Always make sure your tree is properly watered
  • Check for electrical issues and broken bulbs when hanging lights on the tree.
  • Remove heat sources in close proximity to the tree.
  • Unplug your tree when you’re not home and overnight.


There’s nothing like sitting in front of a fire, sipping cocoa, and watching a holiday movie. Keep fires from reaching outside the fireplace with these safety tips:

  • Clean up build-up and ash before lighting a new fire.
  • Schedule an annual chimney inspection before the season.
  • Use safe fire starters - this includes well-seasoned hardwood or CSIA-approved logs.
  • For kindling, stick to fired twigs or branches
  • Ensure all of the embers are completely burnt out before heading to bed.

Reach out with any and all of your questions and inquiries: (212) 564-6365

About SERVPRO Team Harvey
SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan is proudly owned by Lance and Jennifer Harvey - a husband and wife duo that owns three other SERVPRO locations, including SERVPRO of West Somerset County, SERVPRO of Hoboken/Union City, and SERVPRO of Aberdeen/Holmdel.

We understand the stress and worry that comes with a fire or water damage and the disruption it causes your home or business. Our goal is to help minimize the interruption to your life and quickly make it “like it never even happened.”

Learn How To Recover Quickly From A Fire Disaster

4/26/2022 (Permalink)

Realistically, no one can ever be really prepared for a house fire or any form of disaster. It can literally start for various reasons, at anytime and anywhere - it’s truly one of the worst tragedies which can occur to anyone. While we hope you would never have to experience it, you have to prepare to get ready for it. Here are some tips on how you can hasten your restoration process after a fire disaster.

Contact Your Insurance Agent as Early as Possible

The first thing after the aftermath should be to call your insurance agent to inform them of the incident so they can communicate the details of your coverage. Ensure that certain policy inclusions are not overlooked like temporary accommodation assistances. You would have to also discuss the claims process and inform the agent of your intention to engage fire restoration services. Wait for approval from your insurance company before going ahead with any decision.

Ask for A Copy of The Fire Report

The fire report consists of the crucial details and information that are essential in your process of the insurance claim. Do request to make a copy of it, it wouldn’t be a problem since fire reports are public documents.

Start The Mitigation Process

After a fire, there are many damages to the property that may potentially pose a health or safety risk for you. While it’s essential to start the mitigation process early, you should let a fire damage mitigation professional handle it for you as it’s not something you can do by yourself.

Keep A Record of All The Damaged Items

A typical homeowner’s insurance will cover the costs of replacing your damaged items. Insurers usually request an inventory list of your damaged personal items due to the fire. As you do that, take photographs of your items for additional proof. Wherever possible, include any online statements, brief descriptions, prices, and dates of purchase.

If you lose important documents like your passport, driver’s license, deeds, titles, and birth certificates, replace them immediately. Some of them are needed in your claims process.

Clean Your Property And Move Undamaged Items

Start the first phase of cleaning which is removing the soot, dust, and smoke odor that remain trapped in the surfaces. Usually, the odors are quite stubborn and do require professionals with the necessary equipment to completely remove the odor from your home. Them, segregate your undamaged items from those severely damaged, to set them up for cleaning. Otherwise, you should dispose of those that have been soaked in water or too badly burnt.

Specialized Clean-up And Restoration Services at SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan/Financial District

If your home has suffered from fire damage, you’ll need an expert to guide you through this. At SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan/Financial District, we are highly experienced, specialists in fire and water damage restoration for your home, with the necessary advanced training and equipment. We assure you and your family will be treated with respect and empathy while ensuring your home will be restored with care.

Do You Have A House Fire Checklist?

4/26/2022 (Permalink)

A house fire can cause so many different emotions that can get you asking questions about what you need to do next. Who do you call? Where to begin? When is it safe to re-enter your home? With a proper house fire checklist, you can execute the right procedures that can help you mitigate the damage and get back on your feet within a shorter period of time.

Things Not to Do After a House Fire

  • Do not enter your home until you have received permission from the local fire department that it is safe to do so.
  • Do not turn on water, gas, or electric utilities until it has been deemed safe to do so by a professional.
  • Do not move or start your vehicle if it has sustained any damage from the fire.
  • Do not try to clean any soot or smoke damage on your own. Leave it to professionals who are equipped with the right safety equipment and expertise.

Things to Do After a House Fire

  • Get permission from your local fire department before you re-enter your damaged property.
  • Get in touch with your friends and family to inform them of the disaster.
  • Attend to your frightened pets and provide them with the necessary support.
  • Call all utility providers (water, gas, electric) to inform them of the disaster.
  • Call your homeowners’ insurance company to submit a claim.
  • Call SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan/Financial District to discuss fire damage and restoration
  • Understand and acknowledge the different terms of the fire report issued by your local fire department and keep a copy. This report is important for insurance claim purposes.
  • Document all fire damage and jot down detailed notes along with photographs of the damage to your property.
  • Retrieve your valuables before leaving the property.
  • Contact your local police department to inform them that your home will be vacant for a temporary period. You also need to inform your children’s schools so their teachers will know that your children will not be attending school temporarily during this difficult time. You can also notify the post office to forward your mails or hold them temporarily.
  • Start the process of replacing important documents that have been lost in the fire such as passports, licenses, birth certificates, and others.
  • Take care of the emotional needs of every family member as a fire can inflict a tremendous amount of stress. If needed, schedule counseling sessions.
  • For property damaged by wildfires, you may be eligible for Fire Management Assistance. Contact your local authorities to find out more.
  • For disaster relief, there are several organizations that you can seek assistance from such as The Salvation Army or Red Cross depending on where you are located at.

A fire will also cause water damage as a result of firefighting efforts. Our cleaning and restoration specialists are highly-trained and fully-certified to offer efficient and reliable services. Reach out to our team today at SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan/Financial District to discuss the necessary services that you need to restore your fire damaged property.

Items That Can Be Contaminated By Fire Damage

8/27/2021 (Permalink)

Household fires can result in extensive damage to your home where you might have to end up engaging fire damage restoration services. Despite the ability to restore your home to almost as good as new with professional fire damage restoration services, other important items in your home such as documents and personal items would be devastated by the fire. Although suffering from household fire may not mean that every single thing in your property is destroyed, there may be some things inside that fortunately have been salvaged. However, some things that remains seemingly unscathed after a fire should still be thrown out due to contamination from fire damage. It is important for you to sort through all your belongings and throw out some things that might have been contaminated by fire damage.


Whether it is perishable items or non-perishable food, all food items must be disposed of after a fire. Although some food items may appear to be in a good condition, it is impossible to tell what is present or growing in the bottles or cans after they have been exposed to high heat. Food could still be dangerous despite looking, smelling and tasting normal. Conversely, heat could also have activated bacteria and you may end up with food that taste bad and is dangerous when consumed. Food packed in foil, plastic or cardboard would absorb smoke and chemicals. The toxic fumes from the fire could also have contaminated foods in cans and jars even though they are sealed.


Many people are usually tempted to keep medication that have survived after a fire because they can be costly even if they are prescribed or bought from the counter. Like food, medications also can absorb smoke and contaminants from the fire which makes them potentially dangerous. The heat from the fire might also impact the effectiveness of the medications. Other than medications, cosmetics should be disposed of as they also easily absorb smoke and chemicals.

Burnt Textiles

Although a good restoration company is usually able to save textiles following a household fire, these textiles would usually have absorbed too much smoke to be sage to use. It is possible to remove the smell of smoke from clothing, bedding, furniture and rugs, but if such textiles have actually been burnt, they need to be discarded.

Paper Goods

Paper has a high ability to absorb smoke and chemicals not just from the fire but from fire extinguishers. If paper goods including paper plates and cups are used, the users might suffer from poisoning.

What You can do to Recover from a Fire

Every property owner should be well-prepared to not just prevent household fires from occurring but also to know what to do in the event this happens. Our team of experts and professionals here at SERVPRO in lower Manhattan are licensed and well-trained to assist you in fire damage restoration services. Don’t suffer alone, let us help you to bring back your home even after suffering a household fire. Our one-stop solution also includes other services such as cleaning and garden maintenance for the total maintenance of your property. Contact us now for any queries or to simply book an appointment with us today!

Common Causes Of Household Fires

8/26/2021 (Permalink)

Nobody would ever be able to guess if they will ever be a victim of a household fire because such accidents are unpredictable and unfortunately, usually caused by accidental negligence. Such accidental fires can result in extensive damage to your home where you might have to end up engaging fire damage restoration services. Despite the ability to restore your home to almost as good as new with professional fire damage restoration services, other important items in your home such as documents and personal items would be gone. The best way, as the saying goes, is always that prevention is better than cure. All home owners must know the most common causes of household fires so that they will know what to look out for and exercise caution in the first place.


A person holding a lit cigarette might have been distracted or have fallen asleep and this led to a fire. Fires caused by smoking are extremely dangerous as the fire gets out of control in a very short amount of time without being noticed and starts spreading right where the person is sleeping. A fire could start even by just one stray ash. It is very important to ensure that you should never light up a cigarette in the event where you are feeling very tired and not to smoke in bed or near furniture such as blankets or carpets that are easily flammable.


Cooking is one of the most common causes of house fires. When oil and grease become overheated by accident, a fire that burns hot and fast could be caused. It is important for the person cooking to remain in the kitchen at all times while cooking and never leave the lighted stove unattended.


Apart from kitchen cooking appliances such as air fryers and toasters, any other appliances found around the house can get hot and when they do, they are huge fire hazards. One such appliance is the space heater that is notorious for causing a fire. Since there are materials around the house that can catch fire easily such as fabrics or wooden furniture. Unknown to many, faulty wiring found in electrical appliances could also start a fire. To prevent this, always ensure that you are at home when using appliances especially your space heater.

Electrical Fires

Whether it is a short or fault in the wiring, it can always lead to a fire in your walls. Located at hidden areas and out of sight, these fires could quickly become dangerous. Unless you are certified and experienced in doing electrical work, always hire a professional and have your wiring checked consistently.

What You can do to Prevent the Possibility of a Household Fire

Every property owner should be well-prepared to not just prevent household fires from occurring but also to know what to do in the event this happens. Our team of experts and professionals here at SERVPRO in lower Manhattan are licensed and well-trained to assist you in fire damage restoration services. Don’t suffer alone, let us help you to bring back your home even after suffering a household fire. Our one-stop solution also includes other services such as cleaning and garden maintenance for the total maintenance of your property. Contact us now for any queries or to simply book an appointment with us today!

Active Home Fire Prevention Steps To Take

5/7/2021 (Permalink)

Majority of home fire cases is unexpected and they are often caused by the most common task that we perform daily at home which we perceive to be safe. Things like accidentally turning on a stove, leaving the kettle on for too long, forgetting to blow out a candle, and many other daily activities may end up in a scary nightmare. Below are some simple yet effective home fire prevention tips that we can all follow to prevent common household fires.

Cooking Fires

Cooking fires make up at least 23 % of home fires and 9 % of fatalities. They can start with something so simple like a hand towel that is placed too close to a stove to an entirely dangerous house fire in just a matter of seconds. To prevent cooking fires, avoid ever leaving anything combustible near the stove burner. Keep them at least 3 feet away from the cooktop and this includes wall decorations and curtains.

Heating Equipment

Space heaters and wood stove tops are the most common heating equipment that causes house fires. They account for 15 % of house fires and 13 % of fatalities. Most heating equipment fires take place when space heaters or wood stove tops are placed near combustibles with nobody around attending to the area. Such fires can be prevented by placing space heaters or wood stove tops at least 3 feet away from bedding, drapes, and other flammable items. You also need to plug them directly into power sockets instead of using extension cords and switch them off completely when you head to bed or leave the house.

Electrical Equipment

Overloaded extension cords or bad electrical connections are dangerous as they can melt the wiring system which starts house fires. This type of fire accounts for 9 % of home fires and 10 % of fatalities. To prevent this type of fire, replace your extension cords which seem to be fraying. Those extension cords that are undersized to support the number of electronics you have also need to be changed to larger-gauge cords. Extension cords are also not supposed to be run below rugs as accidents are just waiting to happen. Other causes of accidents may involve miscellaneous incidents that are caused by negligent homeowners.

Fire Damage Restoration

Prevention is not that difficult to accomplish if we follow the correct recommended steps. However, occasionally things just happen unexpectedly which are simply beyond our control. If you have suffered from an unfortunate home fire, do not worry about fixing everything on your own. Always engage the services of professional fire damage restoration experts who can assess the extent of your home damage and recommend the proper techniques that need to be taken. It can be hard to come back from a home fire both physically and mentally which is why it is crucial to make use of professional restoration services. Focus on recuperating mentally while the experts take charge of getting your home back to its original physical condition with careful expertise and equipment.

Understanding Different Fire Residues And Smoke

5/7/2021 (Permalink)

There are basically three different types of smoke and fire residues that may get left behind after a fire broke out in your home or at your place of business. Below is a more comprehensive depiction of each of these residues and the corresponding techniques that you can take to clean them up thoroughly.

Synthetic Residues

These synthetic residues form when materials that are oil based get burned. These include fabrics and plastics which can appear in the forms of furniture, window frames, electronics, and carpets. When synthetic materials burn, a thick black smoke is produced. This will then leave behind a smeary residue which can cause a huge mess if not cleaned up through the right techniques. In such a situation, do not touch any of the residue so as to prevent smearing. Vacuuming is the best method to clean the synthetic residues which is to be followed by dry-chem sponge cleaning.

Protein Residues

When meats and beans burn, they cause a fire that leaves a yellowish-brown residue behind. The texture is slightly greasy and the residue may stick onto any surface which makes it a chore to clean up. It is crucial that you purchase the right fire cleaning chemical from a hardware store if you need to work on protein residues after a fire. Be sure to get hold of the correct chemicals as using an unsuitable product may cause the residue to spread and stick, causing an even bigger mess.

Natural Residue

Fires that are caused by burning natural products like paper and wood can produce a residue that looks dry and powdery. This residue is usually greyish-black in color and is much easier to clean up as compared to synthetic or protein residues. To remove this type of residue can easily be done by using a vacuum cleaner that is fixed with a bristled brush attachment. Following this, a dry-chem sponge cleaning can be done to finish things off.

Fire Damage Restoration

It is important to note that minor fire damage that takes place on a bad day can be cleaned up on your own but the results you achieve may last just for a short term. However, it is still highly recommended for you to engage the professional services of fire damage restoration experts if you are unsure of the proper steps to take. Handling the situation on your own may help you save on some costs, but if you happen to take the wrong steps, you may end up causing an even bigger mess which may be irreversible. This in turn may lead to even heftier damage costs that you need to fork out on top of the D.I.Y solutions you have tried earlier on. Restoration experts are able to assess the extent of the fire damage in your home or at your place of business and recommend the proper techniques and products to use.

Act fast and be quick to engage the professional services of fire damage restoration experts from SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan to keep your situation at bay. Make use of services that offer lasting results.

Understanding Fire Damage Restoration Processes

4/16/2021 (Permalink)

You should never try to attempt fire damage restoration after a fire has occurred. To ensure that your home is safe again, it is important to reach out to a professional fire damage restoration professional to carry out the proper fire restoration process required. As a homeowner, it is important to understand how these processes are carried out.

Confirmation That Property Has Stabilized

The first step to a professional remediation process is to check if the property has stabilized enough for safe entry. A professional will check for signs of damage to the home’s structure and inspect the property carefully from the outside before opening the door. It would be advisable to wait for an inspector to consider the property safe to enter before you do so.

Damage Control

Be cautious of soot stains, rust, corrosion, mold, mildew, and the air quality in the home. Even after the fire has been extinguished, smoke and soot can cause further damage to your home.

  • Soot stains are caused by soot which adheres to the surface and discoloration occurs. Depending on material and time elapsed, soot stains may be removable while soot stains may be permanent for other materials.
  • Mold and mildew form quickly after a fire has occurred due to the fire extinguishing process. If there has been signs of water damage, proper damage restoration processes should be implemented as soon as possible to minimize further damage.
  • Rust and corrosion refer to the risk of any metals that become oxidized after interacting with water. This is important to take note of for small electronics with metal. If components in the electronics corrode, your item may have been damaged beyond repair and there could be a high risk of electric shocks.
  • Air quality is one of the areas which professionals focus on, especially when lingering odors are detected. Smoke damage cleanup is often done with the use of an air scrubber and air mover.

Removal of Items Damaged Beyond Repair

For personal possessions that have been damaged beyond repair, they should be removed with extra caution. This is especially important for electrical appliances or machines. Conversely, items that have not been damaged by the fire should be removed as well to prevent further contamination.

Cleanup Excess Water and Wet Surfaces

Standing water needs to be cleaned up as soon as possible because water may damage your walls or flooring.

Deodorizing, Deep Cleaning, and Stain Removal Begins

Once the damage has been assessed, professionals will begin the appropriate damage restoration process for the property. Taking into consideration the level of damage, they should consult with you to work out the level of priority to work with and you should receive regular updates from them.

Why Work With SERVPRO?

Immediate action is crucial when dealing with fire damage. If you have experienced fire damage to your home in Lower Manhattan, reach out to us immediately. Our highly trained fire restoration specialists will be dispatched as soon as possible to assist you. Time saved in getting a response team on site equates to lesser damage caused to your property. If you would like to find out more, contact us today!

Common Fire Incidents In The United States

4/1/2021 (Permalink)

Fires can start anywhere and at any time and the injury and damage that they cause can at times be severe. The article below illustrates some of the most common fire incidents in the United States that you can read about to help you in reducing or eliminating the associated risks. By learning some of the important tips that we are about to share, you can save your property and your loved ones from a threatening situation.

Kitchen Fires

The most common type of fire is the kitchen fire. The reason behind why the kitchen is the source of many fire hazards is because it is where electricity, heat, grease, and water come together. Grease fire is the most common type of kitchen fire. It is highly dangerous as it can spread out of control quickly throughout the whole house. Most grease fires occur because a frying pan is left on the stove unattended for an extended period of time. An overheated pan may also cause a fire when the grease inside catches fire. Grease fires cause critical injury and major property damage, so it is important to pay close attention when you are cooking.

Electrical Fires

Electrical fires are caused by different factors such as faulty electrical wiring, faulty appliances, worn out breaker boxes, or improper use of electrical sockets. Older homes also may not have proper wiring to handle the excessive number of electrical appliances being used in a day. Old breaker boxes are designed to automatically shut off the electricity supply when the circuit becomes overloaded. However, worn or broken connections may not activate the breaker switch. Lighting may also cause electrical fires if the system contains improper wiring. The use of light bulbs that come in wattage that is higher than the recommended level may also cause a fire.

Heater Fires

This type of fire is especially common during winter. Portable heating units need to always be equipped with automatic shut-off technology whenever they overheat. However, improper wiring or worn-out appliances may eventually still cause a fire. Coil space heaters are just as hazardous as their coils will ignite anything that is combustible. It is recommended to place your space heater at least three feet away from anything combustible such as bedding, curtains, furniture, and clothing. Do not use space heaters with extension cords as they generate high levels of electricity which may start a fire.

Smoking-Related Fires

Fires caused by cigarettes cause at least 1,000 deaths in the United States per annum. Majority of these fatalities do not even concern the smoker who is the main culprit of each of the situations. Most smoking fires get started by embers that ignite on bedding, furniture, and trash cans. This is why smokers need to always extinguish their cigarettes completely before emptying their ashtrays into the trash. Never smoke in bed or when you are tired or drowsy. Flammable surfaces such as chairs, couches, or beds should also always be free of ashtrays as they may tip over and cause a fire.

For professional fire restoration works, engage the services of our experts at SERVPRO Manhattan.

We Specialize in Fire Damage Cleaning and Restoation

8/29/2020 (Permalink)

Flames from a fire. We have trained technicians ready to combat whatever damage a fire has left.

Here at SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan/Financial District, we have a long list of jobs we specialize in going beyond the fire, soot, and mold. Cleaning up fire damage is one of our specialties. So naturally, when a local high school suffered a grease fire in their kitchen we were more than happy to help clean up the damage that occurred.  It is our job here at SERVPRO to make accidents look "Like it never even happened." The extent of the fire was pretty bad as soot-covered most of the walls. Our team used our special SERVPRO cleaning products to help restore the kitchen to a much cleaner state. The owners of the property were very pleased with the rate of our work as well as the final product. Call us 24/7 at 212-564-6365 to schedule a consultation. 

Our Take on Fires

8/29/2020 (Permalink)

Grease fire caused damage to kitchen. The structure after we preformed our cleaning services post fire.

Not all fires are started the same way. Some can be caused by a candle left on through the night or a cigarette not being put out all the way. Whatever the cause may be, all fires are messy and leave an unwanted burden on a number of individuals. We know the stress thoroughly but more important than that, we know how to help.

In the photo pictured here, a local high school suffered a grease fire in its kitchen. While the cause remains unknown to us it does not matter to our services. Here at SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan/Financial District, we care about restoring your home, business, or property back to its original state. We are here to help you forget the stress of the damage and make you realize it is possible to make the problem look like it "Never even happened."

What Should Homeowners Do After Fire Damage?

4/21/2020 (Permalink)

One of the most seriously devastating things to happen to any family and/or property is fire damage. To make matters worse, in an attempt to save money, corners are constantly cut on fire insurance claims by insurance companies. Homes are completely destroyed, and personal belongings lost forever in fires. Getting a hard time on your insurance claim from the insurance company through which you have your homeowner's policy is the absolute last thing you need!

To add insult to injury, however, even moderate fires cannot be put out without copious amounts of water. That's going to mean water damage to your belongings and in/on your home. It's not the fault of the fire department, of course. They did everything they could to save your home but had to use a lot of water to do so.

How can you keep headaches to a minimum where fire damage is concerned? Here are a few tips.

Check Your Policy Before the Unthinkable Occurs

Does your homeowner's insurance have "replacement coverage"? Your policy may only stipulate that for the personal items lost, you can get nothing more than the actual cash value. You may choose to opt for a replacement policy, particularly if the things in your home have aged.

Here's an example: You may only get $25 for your tired, old living room set on Craigslist – because that's all it's really worth – but it's going to cost you many times that to replace it.

Is The Condition of Your Property Secure?

You may be required by your homeowner's coverage policy, in order to minimize property damage or harm, to take reasonable steps. This is referred to as a duty to mitigate damage, in short terms. It's relatively easy to do through small steps as in the following scenario: If you find a massive pipe burst, turn off the water and/or cover areas around the leak with plastic wrap. It seems like common sense, more or less, but it's going to make a big difference.

Are You Watching Your Living Expenses?

A “loss of use clause” is included in the homeowner's policies. That means that while you're out of your home, you are entitled to adequate living expense reimbursement. This does, however, only apply to additional living expenses such as the difference between what it's costing you to live somewhere now and what it would have cost you to live in your home, ordinarily.

Say you’re spending $400 a week while eating most of your meals at home. But now with the house fire, you’re spending $500 a week because you are eating out more often. The additional $100 spent is the only thing you'll be able to claim.

Have a Claim? File It Right Away!

Once your home has been damaged by a fire, do not hesitate to file your claim. In fact, this could well be a requirement of your insurance holder. Put a call into your agent as soon as possible. They will likely ask for a "proof of loss claim". This is where you'll list the value of each thing you lost in an itemized manner. You may not receive a claim adjuster in expedited fashion if you wait a long time to file your claim.

Quick Action Is Important

Most often, along with fire damage comes water damage. The important thing to remember here is that reaction time should be as timely as possible. The longer water damage sits unattended, the more problems will arise, including toxic mold and decay. We, at SERVPRO, have experts who understand that, when dealing with fire and water damage, time is of the essence. To formulate a plan to solve your water and fire damage problems according to your precise to your needs, work with our team of professionals.

Understanding the Six Important Classes of Fire Damage

3/12/2020 (Permalink)

Fire is a devastating force of nature that both residential and commercial property owners face. Falling asleep with a lit cigarette or a kitchen fire incident can cause a home or business to sustain severe damage. If you are looking to learn more about the different classes of fire damage that plague households and businesses in the United States, you are at the right place. 

Understanding the Different Classes of Fire Damage

  • Class A: Fires involving cloth, wood, rubber, paper, plastics, and other flammable solids.
  • Class B: Fires caused by flammable liquids and/or solids that can become liquefied. For example, paint, plastics, wax, oil and petrol. Fires caused by fats and cooking oils, however, are excluded from this class.
  • Class C: Fires involving flammable gases such as natural gas, butane, propane, and hydrogen.
  • Class D: Fires caused by combustible metals such as sodium, potassium, and magnesium.
  • Class E: In addition to factors from Classes A and B, Class E fire damage also involves electrical elements.
  • Class F: Fires that occur while cooking fats and oils. Class F fire damage, however, is significantly hotter than those found in Class B and can cause severe damage to one's property.

What are the Most Common Types of Fire Damage?

Now that you are familiar with the various classes of fire damage, it is useful to note the different types and causes of fires in the country as well. 

  • Faulty heater fires

To keep warm during winter, homeowners typically utilize portable heaters. Some heater units, however, may become the catalyst of a fire, especially during the months of January, February, and December. That's why it is important to purchase heaters that come with automatic shutoff features. In addition, owners should keep these heaters at least three feet away from any flammable or combustible source. 

  • Kitchen fires

Grease fires are one of the most common types of kitchen fires. A fire may occur if an individual accidentally leaves a frying pan unattended. Oftentimes, these fires can cause major property damage and serious bodily harm. To avoid appliance fires and oven fires, one should always keep the kitchen clean, never leave cooking food unattended, and unplug appliances when not in use.

  • Smoking-related fires

Cigarettes account for thousands of fire-related deaths in the United States per year. Unfortunately, smokers are not always the ones who lose their lives. That’s why smokers must be cautious and ensure that their cigarettes are completely extinguished prior to disposal. It is recommended that one smokes outside the house if drowsy, inebriated, or exhausted. In addition, smokers should use fire-resistant bins and ashtrays whenever necessary.

  • Electrical fires

Worn out breaker boxes, improper use of electrical outlets, faulty electrical wiring, lightning, and faulty appliances are some of the known causes of electrical fires. Older homes are at a greater risk because of faulty or worn wiring, which may cause shorts and sparks that ignite nearby combustibles. 

It truly pays to be a well-prepared citizen or business owner as fire damage is often devastating. If you or a loved one was a fire victim, consider contacting a trusted restoration company. At SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan, we have fire restoration specialists who can restore your home or business to pre-fire condition. Our company is committed to providing superior 24-hour emergency services. Do not hesitate to schedule an appointment with us today.

Beware of These Office Fire Hazards

3/12/2020 (Permalink)

Many people think that a fire is unlikely to take place in their office. However, they are sadly mistaken. Statistics from NFPA’s 2013 report showed that from 2007 to 2011, there was an average of 3340 fires in office properties each year. This is devastating number, especially as all these fires could have been easily prevented. To help you fire-proof your office, here are some office fire hazards you should beware of.


Although offices do not contain oils, gases or naked flames, this does not mean that there is no fire risk. Offices are home to a surprising number of combustibles.

  • Dust

Many people are unaware that dust can ignite when the thing it is coating gets too hot. On top of preventing machines from overheating, it is recommended to keep office spaces well-ventilated to prevent the accumulation of dust.

  • Paper 

There are hundreds of paper documents and binders lying around in every office, in cabinets, desks and waste paper baskets. It is best to keep these paper materials away from any heat sources and to empty out your waste paper baskets regularly.

  • Cleaning liquids 

People often forget about the cleaning liquids that cleaning staff use to maintain the cleanliness of an office. These cleaning liquids are highly flammable and need to be stored properly to prevent an accident.

Electrical Hazards

It is not uncommon for fires to come from an electrical source. To prevent such a situation, here are the steps you can take.

  • Keep machines from overheating

You can do this by ensuring that all machines are properly ventilated to allow them to cool down. It is also a good habit to turn off these machines every night.

  • Remove broken cables

Leaving broken cables lying around the office is just asking for trouble. The moment there are sparks, an electrical fire is sure to break out.

  • Don’t overload extension cables

Everyone loves to use extension cables. However, it is important to check how much an extension cable can take before you plug in too many machines. 

  • Get PAT testing

Having your PAT equipment inspected regularly will prevent any electrical faults that could lead to an electrical fire.

Don’t Block Exits 

One of the most important things you need to do for a fire risk assessment is to ensure that all staff and visitors to your office can make a quick escape from the building in the event of a fire. Here is what you can do to maximise the chances of a safe exit.

  • Keep fire doors closed 

It may be tempting to keep the fire doors open in a stuffy office or to allow for easy entry. However, fire doors are designed to keep fires contained to buy enough time for people to escape. This means that they must never be pinned open.

  • Keep doors clear

Never pile stocks or other belongings in front of doors. Doors must always be kept clear to allow for easy entry and exit in any emergency.

  • Keep corridors clear

To allow everyone to leave the building as quickly and efficiently as possible, corridors must be kept clear. If there are piles of office paper or binders in an already small space, they will become obstacles that impede an escape.

Now that you are aware of the common office fire hazards, you can take the necessary steps to remove them to keep you and your staff safe.

What Should You Do If A Grease Fire Erupts In Your Home?

3/12/2020 (Permalink)

Anyone who has ever experienced a flare-up in their kitchen knows very well how scary it can be. Grease fires are ten times more terrifying. They usually occur when the temperature of your cooking oil gets too high. In such cases, the oil will start to boil before starting to smoke. If the temperature is not reduced soon after that point, the cooking oil catches fire, resulting in a grease fire.

Grease fires are far more dangerous than regular fires and are much harder to put out. They can erupt suddenly and cause a huge amount of damage within the span of minutes. Trying to extinguish them the same way you would a normal fire can make a grease fire worse.

That’s why it is important to know how to deal with them if you ever have the misfortune of encountering one. Here are some tips on what to do and when you should contact a professional in the event of a grease fire in your home.

What Not to Do

In the event of a regular fire, it is okay to use to water to extinguish the flames. However, this should never be done in the case of a grease fire as the consequences are highly dangerous. When water is thrown onto a grease fire, it causes the oil to spread and splash, spreading the flames. The water will also be instantly flash-boiled into steam by the extreme heat, causing a small explosion that will send flaming oil droplets everywhere.

You may have heard of using baking soda to put out a grease fire. However, it is not a good idea to use any kind of powder type substances to put out a grease fire. Firstly, it is dangerous to get close enough to the fire to apply the powder. Secondly, it is difficult to cover the fire with enough powder to extinguish it. Last but not least, certain household powder substances can be ignited, making the whole situation worse.

Putting Out a Grease Fire

You may not be able to use water or baking soda but there are other ways to extinguish a grease fire in your kitchen. The first thing you should do is to turn off your heating source. Next, before the fire spreads outside of your pan or pot, cover it with a metal lid or cookie sheet. You must never use a glass lid as the intense lid could cause it to shatter, sending glass shards flying everywhere.

If the grease fire becomes too big and you have a class B chemical fire extinguisher at home, your best chance is to try to hose the grease fire down with it. 

If none of these techniques are effective, you should evacuate the building immediately and call 911. 

Professional Fire Damage Restoration

If your home has been damaged by a grease fire, it is best to get a restoration professional to clean your home for you. Grease fires can leave behind a mix of residues that require special tools and experience to remove. With professional help, your home can be restored to its original state in the shortest time possible. Our team of experts and professionals here at SERVPRO specialize in quick and effective fire damage restoration. Feel free to contact us to engage our services!

Fire Damage In Basement

7/15/2019 (Permalink)

Here at SERVPRO we take pride in our long list of services we provide to our clients. On this list is fire damage restoration. One of our clients had the unfortunately experienced a fire in their basement and called us to help them out of their situation. As you can see in the picture on the right the fire tarnished much of the foundation of the basement. Our crew went in and cleaned up all the debris the fire had left behind. Once they were done with the cleanup they moved on to replacing basement with a new foundation. Our client was very pleased with the level of professionalism they received as well as the final product of the basement. The best part of our job is knowing we helped alleviate the stress of a worried client. 

Fire Damage to Property

5/8/2019 (Permalink)

Here at SERVPRO we take pride in our long list of services we provide to our clients. On this list is fire damage restoration. Any type of fire is a big deal to us here at SERVPRO Lower Manhattan. That’s why when we got a call about a small kitchen fire we told the customer we’d be more than happy to help. Not pictured here is where the damage of the fire had taken place, above the cabinets the damage was the most visible. Not pictured is the damage to the stove and counter tops. As you can see when looking at the picture on the right our crew restored the kitchen like there was never a fire a there in the first place.

How to Prevent a Fire From Starting in Your Home

5/8/2019 (Permalink)

There is a long list of causes when it comes to home fires. They're beginning to become a commonality. When you're victim of a house fire you lose everything; all the memories you've made, burnt to a crisp.

Some practices to preventing a fire in your home are as follows:

    • Make sure everything is switched OFF and unplugged
    • Check/Inspect your chimney annually
    •  Keep comforters and anything flammable away from heaters
    • Test fire alarms/ replace batteries frequently
    • Never smoke in the home
    • Keep a spoon or spatula as a reminder when cooking/ do not leave stove tops unattended when lit

It is widely recommended that families practice a fire escape route in the event a fire does occur. No one sees a fire coming and it's best you know what plan of action to take in case you're faced with one.

In the event your home has endured a fire, call SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan at 212-564-6365 and we'll make it, "Like it never even happened."

Fire Damage In Commercial Building

5/8/2019 (Permalink)

A fire that started in the elevator shaft of a commercial building caused repercussions throughout different parts of the structure as well. Unless it's summer and you're sitting next to a bonfire fires are never anticipated. In almost any case, they are not what any business owner wants for themselves. As you can see in the picture we have a different point of view from the building and there is soot damage present on the flooring. This is shown by the darker color on the floor and the foot prints shown within them. SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan went in to this job and before we even put a single piece of equipment down we assured the business owner that this was nothing new to us. 

Fire Damage in Resident Basement

6/8/2018 (Permalink)

Here at SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan we understand how badly some fires can affect our customers. Not only do they do damage to the homes and businesses to so many individuals but they also cause a tremendous amount of stress.  We are here to alleviate that stress and restore your home back to the way it once was prior to damage.  This job classifies as fire damage as you can see the color of the beams after the fire got to them  when looking at the picture. Our crew went in with the proper tools to get rid of all the garbage and debris the fire left behind to make this house look like a home again. Our customer was very happy with the level of professionalism we provided. It’s easy to get worked up when something like this happens to you but don’t worry SERVPRO is #heretohelp.