Recent Posts

Mold Remediation in Jacksonville

7/1/2020 (Permalink)

Photo shows dark mold growth splotches on a residential ceiling. Do you think you have mold? Call SERVPRO of Mandarin and an IICRC mold certified expert can help, 904-636-0044. Photo credit: CDC.gov

Mold can grow almost anywhere in a home or business if conditions permit. If there is visible growth on painted wall surfaces, property owners should be concerned about what may be growing on the wall's opposite side. The environment inside the walls of a house often differs drastically from the outside and could create a perfect haven for mold. If the wall remains wet for a prolonged period, it's almost guaranteed that the mold growth on the backside will be worse than on the front. At that point, containing the work space and removing moldy materials, followed by cleaning of salvageable framing, are the best options.

Mold becomes a problem inside a home or business when there's excessive humidity or moisture for an extended period of time. The problem can originate from sudden water releases, like a burst pipe or large spill that goes untreated, or from a chronic condition, such as a leaking roof or plumbing. Even high humidity or warm, moist air condensing on cool surfaces can trigger mold problems. It's always best to have the mold evaluated and removed by a certified professional.

Certified professionals have the training and experience to:

-Identify moisture sources

-Evaluate mold growth (visible or suspected)

-Contain damage to the smallest area possible

-Physically remove contamination

-Dry materials to ensure that mold will not return

-Perform or recommend procedures for returning property to a preloss condition

SERVPRO of Mandarin has professional technicians that are IICRC certified and trained in mold remediation and we are a State of Florida licensed mold remediation company. Call us for all your microbial related issues at 904-636-0044.

4 Essential Steps for Disaster Preparation and Recovery

6/19/2020 (Permalink)

Image shows "Faster to Any Sized Disaster" Clip Art Storm Teams are Standing by, 904-636-0044.

Natural disasters can be terrifying. Especially if they affect your home or business, and those that depend on you. Although it’s scary to think about, there are a wide variety of different catastrophes that could strike your business, including floodshurricanestornadoes, fires, and more.  If one of these unfortunate events happens, you don’t want to find yourself unprepared! Discover the most important steps to take following a major disaster so you are able to recover quickly and safely.  

1.     Assess the Situation

As soon as the calamity has died down, check yourself and any family members to make sure no one is hurt. If you have any nearby neighbors, see if they are in need of any help. Turn off the gas and electricity in your home if it safe to do so, and avoid entering your home for a while, as there could be damage to your floors or ceilings that could cause them to collapse.

2.     Finding Food and Shelter

If your business no longer has running water, you can obtain it through emergency sources, such as rainwater, your hot water tank, your toilet reservoir, or ice cube trays. Shelters are usually assembled by the American Red Cross in emergency situations for those whose homes are too damaged to stay in; look for one of these if you feel your home or business is dangerous. The Federal Emergency Management Agency, as well as local churches and community services, are also good resources for any needs you might have in these dire situations.

3.     Be Cautious

Disasters always leave a trail of destruction behind; be wary of contaminated floodwaters, fallen power lines, or any criminals taking advantage of all the chaos. Don’t turn the gas back on in your home, as there could be a leak, and make sure your house is ventilated if you’re cooking over your fireplace.

4.     Recovering Important Information

One of the last steps of disaster rehabilitation and recovery is to salvage as many of the important documents from the wreckage, such as your insurance policies, birth certificates, driver’s license, deeds, wills, financial statements, and any other precious information. Although these procedures might be difficult, it will help you and your family recover from this crisis as quickly as possible.

Call SERVPRO of Mandarin with all Your Disaster Rehabilitation Needs!

If a disaster has affected your home, call SERVPRO of Mandarin for all your cleanup needs! Our disaster restoration services are available 24/7, 365 days per year; they include water and flood damage cleanup, mold remediation, odor control, reconstruction services, trauma cleanup, and fire and smoke damage cleanup. Don’t wait another moment if your home has been devastated; call us today at 904-636-0044.

Jacksonville Fire Safety Tips

6/9/2020 (Permalink)

Image depicts a badly burned cash register, black and charred.  A Jacksonville restaurant's cash register catches fire, badly burning the dining room, and putting soot throughout the kitchen.

A fire is something we never think can happen to you. It can. SERVPRO of Mandarin can help. Here are some tips for being ready if it does happen.

Although an emergency escape plan is not required for all businesses under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), it recommends your building have an emergency action plan to protect yourself, employees, and your business during an emergency situation. OSHA suggests the following steps when developing such a plan.

Organize emergency preparedness procedures and share them with your employees.

Once a plan is developed, post evacuation procedures, including routes and exits, where they are easily accessible to all employees. Ensure that all exits are marked and well lit, wide enough to accommodate the number of evacuating personnel, and unobstructed and clear of debris at all times. 

Conduct office evacuation exercises and drills. Designate a safe spot outside of the facility where employees can regroup, recover, and conduct a headcount. Once completed, evaluate how well the plan worked. You may need to make improvements.

If a fire does affect your home or business call SERVPRO of Mandarin right away. 904-636-0044

Blog 5: Recommendations for Property Owners

6/8/2020 (Permalink)

Clip art shows the interior of a classroom with a list of facilities SERVPRO can help clean. SERVPRO of Mandarin can help your business or commercial building keep your employees and guests safe by following CDC guidelines.

Recommendations for Property Owners

Beyond the cleaning and disinfecting performed by SERVPRO of Mandarin, property owners must understand that persons infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus and/or COVID-19 that enter their property will potentially infect others and deposit the virus on surfaces.

According to the CDC, the virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person. This could be between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) or through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.xxvii

The CDC has set up a webpage titled Preventing COVID-19 Spread in Communities which addresses homes, childcare, and K-12 schools, colleges and universities, work environments, healthcare settings, and large community events and mass gatherings.

For business purposes, the CDC recommends routine environmental cleaning. This should include routinely cleaning all frequently touched surfaces in the workplace, such as workstations, countertops, and doorknobs; and provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (for example, doorknobs, keyboards, remote controls, desks) can be wiped down by employees before each use.xxviii For structures that utilize an internal or external janitorial crew, it is recommended that they follow proper cleaning protocols established by the CDC.

xxvii https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/transmission.html

xxviii https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-business-response.html

Are You Prepared for an Emergency or Power Outage?

6/5/2020 (Permalink)

Photo shows an emergency kit from the American Red Cross with a backpack, water bottles, and first aid supplies. Knowing what to do until help arrives is the first step to being prepared.

You may need to survive on your own after an emergency for several days, sometimes up to a week. This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours, or until emergency crews arrive. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster, but they cannot reach everyone immediately. The nature of the disaster road conditions or flood waters may prevent help from arriving in a timely manner. 

Additionally, basic services such as electricity, gas, sewage treatment, water and telephones may be cut off. Your supplies kit should contain items to help you manage during these outages. 

If the power goes out keep your pipes from freezing by shutting off the valve that allows water to come into your home. Then, open any drain valves and all faucets and let them run until the pipes are empty (it's helpful to identify these valves in advance). Next, flush all toilets and pour denatured alcohol into toilets and sinks to prevent water in the traps from freezing. Do NOT use automotive antifreeze in case there's trouble with your water system; you don't want the antifreeze to contaminate your drinking water. You may, however, use nontoxic antifreeze that's made for winterizing motor homes.

Be prepared for a power outage by keeping necessary items centrally located in your home. Take the time to ensure that everyone in your family is aware of the "kit." Periodically check your kit to see that batteries operate properly. The following is a list of items that are suggested:

1.     Flashlights for each family member

2.     Battery-operated radio and clock

3.     Extra batteries

4.     Containers of bottled water (at least 1 gallon, per person, per day)

5.     Canned, freeze-dried or dehydrated food, powdered milk, baby supplies for infants

6.     Non-electric can opener

7.     List of important phone numbers

8.     First-aid kit

9.     Prescriptions

Stock canned foods, dry mixes and other staples that do not require refrigeration, cooking, water or special preparation. Be sure to include a manual can opener and eating utensils. The following items are suggested when selecting emergency food supplies. You may already have many of these on hand.

•Store at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food.

•Choose foods your family will eat.

•Remember any special dietary needs.

•Avoid foods that will make you thirsty.

•Choose salt-free crackers, whole grain cereals and canned foods with high liquid content.

•Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables and a can opener

•Protein or fruit bars

•Dry cereal or granola

•Peanut butter

•Dried fruit

•Nuts

•Crackers

•Canned juices

•Non-perishable pasteurized milk

•High energy foods

•Vitamins

•Food for infants

•Comfort/stress foods

These and many other helpful tips are available at ready.gov. Here is the link to tips for before, during, and after a severe weather event; http://www.ready.gov/severe-weather and https://www.ready.gov/build-a-kit. When severe storms strike Florida’s First Coast knowing what to do until SERVPRO of Mandarin arrives will make a difference. Contact us at 904-636-0044.

Blog 4: Clean up Procedures Related to COVID-19

6/4/2020 (Permalink)

Clip art shows a hand reaching for a door handle with animations of viral clusters floating around it. Call SERVPRO of Mandarin, 904-636-0044 for a free review of cleanup procedures designed for your facility.

Clean up Procedures

These procedures focus on the critical role cleaning plays in preventing the transmission of viruses, such as Coronavirus. Cleanup procedures may vary depending on the environment, but the general guideline includes [1] disinfectant selection, [2] cleaning and sanitizing of porous and non-porous surfaces, [3] disinfecting of non-porous surfaces, [4] cleaning and disinfecting of equipment, tools, and/or supplies used for cleanup process, [5] post clean up evaluation, and [6] disposal of waste.

1. Disinfectant Selection

The CDC recommends usage of a disinfectant with the EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claim. As of the date of this publication, there are no disinfectants that have been tested specifically for use against novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the Cause of COVID-19. However, disinfectant manufacturers (including SERVPRO) are working with the EPA to have the emerging viral pathogen claim added to existing products that are designed to kill viruses similar to SARS-CoV-2. 

2. Cleaning and Sanitizing of Porous and Non-porous Surfaces

The CDC describes cleaning as removing germs, dirt, and impurities from surfaces or objects. Cleaning works by using a detergent and water to physically remove germs from surfaces. This process does not necessarily kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers their numbers and the risk of spreading infection.xx
Some materials cannot be cleaned with detergent and water without being damaged. For this reason, paper and paper products are not able to be cleaned and/or disinfected. Cleaning methods typically used on water sensitive materials such as vacuuming or dry sponging would not be capable of removing enough soil and residue to be effective.
For soft (porous) surfaces such as carpeted floor, rugs, and drapes, remove visible contamination if present and clean with appropriate cleaners indicated for use on these surfaces.xxi Surfaces that are not water sensitive, can be wet cleaned using a Hot Water Extraction or Deluxe Preconditioner and Rinse method. Upholstered items and carpets can be sanitized with certain disinfectants.
Affected laundry/linen items should be minimally handled. If the items can be laundered, SERVPRO of Mandarin will launder items in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and then dry items completely. Otherwise, SERVPRO will use products with the EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims that are suitable for porous surfaces.xxii

• SERVPRO will wash items as appropriate in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, and if possible, will launder items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely. Dirty laundry that has been in contact with an ill person can be washed with other people’s items.xxiv

• SERVPRO will clean and disinfect hampers or other carts for transporting laundry according to the guidance above for hard or soft surfaces.xxv

Non-porous materials like hard surface floors, cabinets, countertops, doorknobs, and plumbing fixtures can be wet cleaned using a variety of SERVPRO hard surface cleaners (general-purpose cleaners) and cleaning methods. All cleaning procedures will be performed in such a manner as to minimize the splashing, spraying, spattering, falling, aerosolization, cross-contamination, migration, and generation of infectious material. We will avoid cleaning techniques such as pressurized air or water sprays, which may generate droplets or bioaerosols.

3. Disinfecting of Non-porous Surfaces

The CDC describes disinfecting as killing germs on surfaces or objects. Disinfecting works by using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces or objects. This process does not necessarily clean dirty surfaces or remove germs, but by killing germs on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection.xxvi
The application method should be selected based on surface type, location of surface, amount of surface area, and manufacturer recommended application method. Disinfectants can be applied using a saturated towel, spray bottle, pump-up sprayer, electric sprayer, ULV Mister, or electrostatic sprayer. SERVPRO follows label directions for application and maintaining wet contact or dwell time as indicated by the manufacturer, which is critical.
Our technicians will be careful to prevent the overwetting of electronic items, such as phones and computers to prevent potential damage.

4. Cleaning and Disinfecting of Equipment, Tools, and/or Supplies Used for Cleanup Process

Any equipment, tools, and/or supplies used by SERVPRO of Mandarin for the cleanup process will be cleaned and disinfected using the cleaning methods described in steps 1 and 2. This is to ensure that potential contamination is not moved to other parts of the structure.

5. Post Clean Up Evaluation

At the time of this publication, there is no available surface test for the SARS-CoV-2 virus. There is currently no way to measure the effectiveness of the disinfection of SARS-CoV-2.

6. Disposal of Waste

SERVPRO of Mandarin will follow all applicable federal, state, provincial, and municipal laws regarding the packaging, transportation, and disposal of medical waste. All disposable PPE (i.e. gloves, disposable respirators, coveralls), cleaning towels, and other waste will be bagged and sealed within the work area.

xx https://www.cdc.gov/flu/school/cleaning.htm 

xxi https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/cleaning-disinfection.html

xxii https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/cleaning-disinfection.html

xxiv https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/cleaning-disinfection.html

xxv https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/cleaning-disinfection.html

SERVPRO of Mandarin is On-Site Quickly to Minimize Storm Damage

6/3/2020 (Permalink)

Photo shows flooded and muddy driveway to large commercial building. Large loss SERVPRO equipment is on the job. SERVPRO Large Loss Response Teams help remediate storm and flood damage no matter the size of the loss.

The weather in Northeast Florida can be unpredictable. You never know when a severe thunderstorm or other natural disaster is going to blow through town. Storm damage happens fast. Gusting winds knock down structures, hail damages roofs, lightning strikes, debris flies into buildings, and ongoing rain floods offices. When something like this happens, you don’t have to face it alone. Choose locally owned SERVPRO of Mandarin for the service you can trust. For 37 years SERVPRO of Mandarin has been serving Jacksonville communities providing fast, reliable and professional service.

Your Resource for 24/7 Emergency Support

SERVPRO is on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. That means you can call us any time, day or night when facing weather-related damage. What’s more, we will send an expert crew immediately to help. Our quick response to emergency situations not only gives you help right when you need it, but also it can result in lower storm damage repair costs and/or limited contents damage for your business or home.

How Our Expert Storm Damage Restorations Solutions Work

The production staff at SERVPRO of Mandarin has the expertise and experience required to minimize potential damage and secure your property. Once you contact us about a specific natural disaster or weather damage restoration project, here is how our process works: 

  1. SERVPRO of Mandarin Production Manager or Crew Chief is on-site within one hour of your emergency call.
  2. Our team assesses the weather-related damages at your site.
  3. We create a plan for restoring your property to its preloss condition.
  4. We mobilize the specialized equipment required to mitigate secondary damage and loss.
  5. SERVPRO of Mandarin production team monitors the situation throughout the entire restoration process.

When you need work done at your property, SERVPRO of Mandarin stands ready to provide you fast and effective storm damage cleanup and relief. Call us anytime, 24/7/365 at 904-636-0044.

Hurricane Season is Here, 5 Preparedness Tips to Do Today

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Photo shows American Red Cross Emergency Kit supplies including: batteries, flashlight, water, first aid kit, medicine, etc. have your Emergency Kit Ready in time for this year's storm season to keep your family safe.

Hurricane season has arrived and SERVPRO of Mandarin has preparedness steps that families and individuals can do today before the next storm approaches.

While the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicted a near-normal 2016 Atlantic hurricane season with 10 to 61 named storms, it is important to remember that it only takes one hurricane to devastate a community. In addition, caution cannot be limited to coastal states. Hurricanes can be just as destructive for inland communities.

5 Hurricane Preparedness Tips to Tackle Today 

1. Download the Red Cross Emergency App.

This new app provides expert advice on what to do before, during, and after hurricanes and other disasters. It also gives instant access to 35 customizable weather alerts, safety tips and preparedness information for 14 different emergencies; all in one free and easy to use.

2. Learn the difference between a Hurricane Watch and a Hurricane Warning.

As hurricane season approaches, it is also important to know the difference between the threat levels.

?  A Hurricane Watch is when conditions are a threat within 48 hours. It’s then time to review and update your hurricane plan. Get ready to act if a warning is issued, and stay informed.

?  A Hurricane Warning is when conditions are expected within 36 hours. It’s then time to complete your storm preparations and leave the area if directed to do so by authorities.

3. Create an evacuation plan for your family.

Planning and practicing your evacuation plan minimizes confusion and fear during the event. Find out about your community’s hurricane response plan. Plan routes to local shelters, register family members with special medical needs and make plans for your pets to be cared for. Obey evacuation orders. Avoid flooded roads and washed-out bridges.

4. Build an emergency kit.

The Red Cross advises that you should include a gallon of water per person, per day, non-perishable food, a flashlight, battery-powered radio, first aid kit, medications, supplies for an infant if applicable, a multi-purpose tool, personal hygiene items, copies of important papers, cell phone chargers, extra cash, blankets, maps of the area and emergency contact information.

5. Pay attention to the weather forecast and stay informed.

Listen to an NOAA Weather Radio or critical information from the National Weather Service (NWS)

6. Download the SERVPRO Ready Plan App. 

This is an invaluable tool if you own a home or commercial building. The SERVPRO Ready Plan App is a part of the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile which is a start-up approach that provides critical information needed to begin mitigation and recovery services.

SERVPRO of Mandarin provides emergency service 24/7/365. Our team of professionals are committed to providing firewater and biohazard cleanup and restoration services for all Jacksonville communities and business. SERVPRO of Mandarin also offers top-quality professional cleaning services for all Jacksonville homes and businesses. Call us anytime and speak to a SERVPRO professional, at 904-636-0044.

Blog 3: Isolation and Ventilation Related to Viral Decontamination

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Photo shows temporary ducting helping cycle air out of the building. SERVPRO of Mandarin installs temporary ductwork to help ventilate the affected area, to cycle fresh air in from the outside.

Isolation and Ventilation

Feasible engineering and work practice controls will be utilized by SERVPRO of Mandarin during viral decontamination services to minimize employee exposures to airborne infectious disease. Examples of engineering controls include airborne infection isolation rooms (AIIR), exhaust ventilation, air filtration, and air disinfection.xii 

We will close off areas used by the ill persons and wait as long as practical before beginning cleaning and disinfection to minimize the potential for exposure to respiratory droplets.xiii This is normally accomplished by closing doors or erecting critical barriers with 6 mil polyethylene sheeting to facilitate source containment. The work area shall be locked when unattended. A Biohazard sign can be provided by SERVPRO of Mandarin and be posted at any potential entry point to the work area. 

The CDC recommends opening outside doors and windows to increase air circulation in the area. If possible, we will wait up to 24 hours before beginning cleaning and disinfection.xiv Based on existing bioremediation standards, there is value in controlling airflow from affected to unaffected areas. To control the spread of aerosolized contamination, workers can put the contaminated area under HEPA-filtered negative air pressure. This air should be exhausted outside the structure when practical. If possible we will engineer an air change rate of ≥6 mechanical air changes per hour (ACH).xvi

If utilizing negative pressure, pressure differentials will be monitored to ensure that air is always flowing from the surrounding area into the work area. Negative pressure can be monitored either continuously or periodically. Monitoring methods include chemical aerosols (e.g., smoke tube), differential pressure-sensing devices (e.g., manometer), and physical indicators (e.g., flutter strips).xvii If using a manometer, it is recommended to achieve a pressure differential of ≥0.01 inch of water gauge.xviiixix

xii https://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh/coronavirus/

xiii https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/cleaning-disinfection.html

xiv https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/cleaning-disinfection.html

xvi https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5417a1.htm

xvii https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5417a1.htm

xviii https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5417a1.htm

xix https://www.cdc.gov/infectioncontrol/guidelines/environmental/background/air.html

Keep Your Family Prepared for Disaster in Northeast Florida

5/29/2020 (Permalink)

Photo shows a green SERVPRO house clip art with the phrase "Where will your family meet if disaster happens?" written inside. Being prepared for a disaster is the first step to keeping your family safe, and weathering the storm.

Keep your family prepared in 2020 with this Emergency Checklist from our partners at the American Red Cross.

1. A gallon of water per person, per day.

2. Supply of non-perishable packaged or canned food and a manual can opener.

3. Change of clothing, rain gear, and sturdy shoes.

4. First aid kit and prescription medications.

5. Battery-powered radio, flashlight and plenty of extra batteries.

6. Credit cards, cash, and an extra set of home and car keys.

7. List of family physicians.

8. Special items of elderly or infant family members.

Do not forget to make arrangements for pets.

Visit the American Red Cross for more information, and call SERVPRO of Mandarin at 904-636-0044 if you experience property damage related to storms.