How Do You Clean Up After a Storm?

Jul 1, 2021

Storms will not only bring heavy rains, but also floods in many cases. This blog focuses on how to help you safely and effectively clean and restore storm-damaged houses and items.

What should we do after a storm?

1. Water safety

After the flood, it is very important to ensure the safety of the well water. For instructions on water safety and purifying water, follow the guidance from your community water supplier or department of health.

2. Foods and food preparation items

· Do not eat food that may have come into contact with floodwater.

· Discard all food that came in contact with floodwaters, including canned goods.

· Discard wooden cutting boards, wooden spoons, plastic utensils, baby bottle nipples and pacifiers.

· Thoroughly wash metal pans, ceramic dishes and utensils with hot soapy water and sanitize by boiling them in clean water or by immersing them for 15 minutes in chlorine bleach water.

· Clean and sanitize all kitchen surfaces.

· Wash and sanitize dishes, utensils and appliances.

3. Assessing damage and dangers

Do not enter buildings that may have structural damage. The collapse of Miami's houses is a lesson worth learning.

4. Avoiding mold hazards

If your house was built before 1978, it may contain lead paint or asbestos materials. Disturbing lead and asbestos materials during cleaning and maintenance can cause very serious health hazards.

5. Avoiding mold hazards

Spores produced by molds can easily float and spread in the air. When they find the right conditions (moisture, nutrients, and growth sites), they will form new mold growth called colonies.

Mold problems can damage materials and health. The longer the mold grows, the greater the risk and the harder it is to remedy it. Once the flood has subsided and you can return safely, do not delay cleaning and drying up in time.

6. Salvaging furniture

· Always wear rubber gloves and protective goggles when handling waterlogged items and repair chemicals.

· Read and follow the warning labels. Many repair products are flammable, contain irritants, or produce unhealthy fumes.

· Whenever possible, bring items outdoors for scrubbing and cleaning.

7. Assessing appliances and fixtures

Replace all wires, lamps, electrical appliances and equipment exposed to salt water. Also replace the water trapped in the insulating layer or inaccessible cavities. Some fixtures, wires and electrical appliances, exposed to fresh water may be salvageable. However, it should be checked by a service professional before use. Unplug, clean, and dry appliances, but do not use them before servicing. The complete plumbing fixture can be cleaned in place.