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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

What First Responders Need To Know About Floods

7/23/2019 (Permalink)

Flood damage in a home due to heavy rains.

As a first responder in Carpentersville, IL, you should know what to do before and during a disaster situation to safely and efficiently do the job. Floods, for example, can be caused by multiple sources:

  • Thunderstorms
  • Burst dams
  • Broken pipes
  • Leaky appliances

Being able to wisely navigate the different causes and hazards of a flood should increase job efficiency and personal safety.

Personal Safety During Flood Cleanup and Restoration

Being Properly Immunized

Immunizations are often an important defense measure when dealing with floods. A tetanus vaccination can protect against serious bacterial infection, and a booster should be given to adults every 10 years. For people working directly with those exposed to flood contaminants, Hepatitis B is also recommended and is given as a series of vaccinations. There are several other vaccinations that can be helpful, but tetanus and Hepatitis B are typically the most crucial.

Washing Hands

Hand washing, though it seems simple, can be extremely important for a flood response team. Depending on the source of the flood, there could be biological contaminants and mold in the water, and therefore on everything the water gets to. Washing with soap and water is often best, but using a hand sanitizer that is alcohol-based can also work in a pinch. 

Wearing Protective Clothing

Eye goggles and gloves are a should-have for a first responder, especially in areas with contaminated water. Clothing that has been treated to be chemical-resistant can also be a good idea, as well as sturdy boots that can handle the terrain. Make sure to launder anything that comes in contact with flood water before returning home, to minimize the danger of contamination.

Floods, no matter their source, can be hazardous to deal with. Following procedures and being smart can reduce the risk of any unwanted exposure to contaminants. Working as a first responder can be challenging, but using common sense and being prepared beforehand can go a long way to staying safe.

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