The American spirit of community becomes very evident when a local disaster becomes a national relief effort. The circle of damage may be relatively small like a flooded street, or a Hurricane Sandy that ravaged almost the entire east coast. The response of help from businesses and individuals draws from all communities from east to west north to south. Caution is quickly thrown aside by the empathy of helping fellow countrymen in trouble. [Read more…]
Of all the hazards that can damage property, water is the most insidious. Water is for the most part silent, travels in all directions from the source, and often doesn’t surface immediately. It just lies quietly in the dark doing its damage. Sometimes it goes undetected for weeks and even months.
There are many preventative steps any homeowner can take themselves to detect a water leak. Checking the water bill every month is a simple check, as an unidentifiable spike may lead to detecting a leak. Be alert to water stains or standing water. Usually you can track down the leak and correct the cause. [Read more…]
If you have a fire in your home, you call the fire department. Once the fire is extinguished, you have time to take care of insurance assessment and renovation. But water damage—that’s a different story. If you incur water damage of any sort or source, you should be aware of several precautions recommended by restoration professionals and insurance companies. Here’s PDR’s top five tips if you experience a water-damage emergency in your home or business: [Read more…]
Late last month, State Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) introduced legislation to fund a statewide earthquake early-warning system using technology that already exists. During a press conference at Caltech in Pasadena on January 28th, it was discussed that the prototype called the California Integrated Seismic Network needs more money in order for it to go public, and the estimated cost is $80 million. [Read more…]
When storms hit a populated area, like Hurricane Sandy did in late 2012, we usually think of devastation like what’s pictured above. We can imagine that it’s hard for emergency vehicles to get through, and that there’s chaos at hospitals across the affected areas.
But did you ever stop to think about how flooding and/or fire can affect the actual tools of the medical industry? Think of how many sterilized products go into just a simple, routine blood test, or even a throat swab. Now think about how you would perform these procedures when you’re entire storage facility has been flooded with rank stormwater, causing all of your hypodermic needles, gauze and other implements to be completely useless. [Read more…]
No, it doesn’t get that cold in California in the winters, although the mountains do see snow this time of year. But we dare anyone to tell us they didn’t get shivers up their spine seeing photos and video of the snowstorm back East! Anyone? No, we thought not.
And even though us Californians don’t have much to worry about in the way of freezing temperatures, we are complete “weather wimps” and still bust out the space heaters and start up the fireplaces when the nights and mornings are chilly. [Read more…]
Here in California, Hurricane Sandy is but a distant, pre-election, pre-2013 blip on the weather map. But to most of the people on the Eastern Seaboard, the after effects of Hurricane Sandy are still felt on a daily basis.
Take Pat Scala of New Dorp Beach in Staten Island, New York. She’s not so concerned about her own home, but more about the two abandoned houses next door. You’d think the dead animals would bother her—and they do—but what scares her more is the mold growing on the inside and outside of the houses. [Read more…]
We hope that your home is never destroyed by a fire, because we’ve seen the aftermath. Southern California’s Santa Ana winds can make a simple fire widespread and deadly, and can burn a home to the ground. We’ve dealt with homeowners who have lost everything and this is just the first shock.
Some of these people have found out that this isn’t the worst part of losing your home. The worst part comes when you submit the insurance claim, only to find out that you’re underinsured.
According to a 2008 survey from industry watchdog United Policyholders, over 75 percent of claimants from San Bernardino and San Diego counties experienced this devastating scenario. The same survey found that these victims of wildfire were underinsured by an average of $240,000. [Read more…]
Mold is quite an insidious tenant in any property—rented or owned, commercial or residential, nobody wants mold around. And it’s really not surprising, as it can cause significant health problems, including rashes, chronic fatigue, nausea, memory loss and reduced brain functions, hemorrhaging, asthma—and that’s just to name a few.
Although the naturally humid climates of California, Texas and across the Southern United States usually experience more cases of mold than in other areas, mold can grow just about anywhere water is present. And all those health problems we mentioned? There is considerable debate within the scientific and medical communities about mold, particularly about which molds in what situations actually cause serious health risks to people. That’s because many molds are perfectly harmless to humans, and it takes an expert to know which mold is just annoying and which is dangerous. [Read more…]
For the most part, yes—portable ethanol fireplaces are safe. But, as with any device or appliance that has an open flame, there are precautions that need to be taken.
Who doesn’t love sitting by an open fire when there’s a nip in the air? In recent years, the portable ethanol fireplace has made sitting by the fire, both indoors and outdoors, something that’s both easy and nice to look at. Some of them are very attractive, using colored rocks or sleek chrome for a modern, clean look for inside the house, and out.
What is ethanol anyway? It’s actually pretty cool—it’s a plant-based fuel product that does not release new carbon dioxide into the air. That means it’s much better for the environment than a wood fire, which causes all sorts of air pollution! [Read more…]