In June of 2013, the Cougar Creek, Highwood River, and other rivers in Alberta, Canada overflowed due to extensive rainfall. The widespread flooding caused major damage in Canmore, Calgary and High River, and resulted in lengthy power outages and the closure of the Trans-Canada Highway. The catastrophic flooding was the worst in Alberta’s history. As water levels rose, many communities were forced to evacuate, causing families to leave their homes to the flood waters.
Meteorologists and climate experts warn of an increasing trend in precipitation intensity and total rainfall across North America. With the rising threat of dangerous weather, it is important to know what to do when flooding hits your area.
The first 24 to 36 hours after flood waters recede are critical. A damp environment quickly breeds dangerous mold and bacteria. Starting the cleanup process quickly is essential to ensuring a home remains safe and healthy. Mold and mildew will begin to grow almost immediately and it often lurks in overlooked places such as basements, crawl spaces, and attic areas.
Before you begin your clean-up efforts, it is important to prevent any further water intrusion into the dwelling. After the threat of further water damage has been eliminated, a thorough cleaning should begin as soon as possible.
Here are eight tips to help maximize your clean-up efforts.
Often the most difficult part of flood clean-up effort isn’t the taxing physical labor. It can be emotionally traumatic to sort through flood damaged possessions and have to throw out favorite clothes, furniture, pictures, and family heirlooms. While it may be tempting to hold on to cherished items, if they have been contaminated, it is best to throw them away.
By taking action as soon as possible and taking the right steps to halt the spread of dangerous mold after a flood, your home will more quickly return to the safe environment you’ve always enjoyed.
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