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    Growing Concern with Wildfires and Fixing the Destruction with Fire Damage Restoration in Boulder, CO

    Over the past 30 years, most wildfires in Colorado and the surrounding areas have increased in severity, including destruction to both rural and urban regions. This increase has not gone unaddressed, however, as more and more fire safety resources and protection plans have been established in Colorado communities. For the businesses and homeowners, ServiceMaster DSI offers comprehensive fire damage restoration in Boulder, CO and the surrounding Denver-Aurora Metro area.

    Why Colorado’s Wildfires Have Increased in Devastation

    Climate Change: Since 2010, scientists and climate specialists have delved into the links between global warming and the increase in wildfires. Climate changes include year-round increased temperatures in combination with decreased precipitation.

    History of Wildfire Suppression: Wildfires are dangerous, so it’s natural that over the years humans have attempted to suppress the spreading of forest or grass fires. In actuality, wildfires are a vital part of the Colorado ecosystem. Because they have been suppressed for many years, the ground cover that wildfires would normally keep in balance has instead accumulated in dry, thick layers. As such, any fires that ignite are more likely to reach higher levels of spreading and destruction.

    Urban Growth: As Colorado becomes more and more populated, urban settlements are spreading deeper into regions where wildfires are most prevalent. This leads to increased risks of building damage and human-related causes of wildfire.

    Decreasing the Risk of Wildfire on Your Property

    Wildfire Basics: Wildfires move in several directions: horizontally across flat, grassy areas; vertically up trees and buildings; or diagonally jumping from horizontal spaces to varying vertical heights.

    Fuels: Wildfires are able to move in these ways depending on the fuel provided. For example, a fire can move horizontally, burning the pine needles and brush on the ground, while simultaneously moving diagonally and vertically up the surrounding trees, creating dangerous crown fires at the tree tops.

    Defensible Space: Every property has an area of defensible space surrounding it. This space is a section that can be cleared, trimmed, dug, or otherwise altered to create a fuel-free break between the potential wildfire space and a structure.

    Structural Ignitability: The “ignitability,” or ability of a structure to catch fire depends largely on it buildings materials and the regularity of exterior maintenance. For example, a home with wood panels and an accumulation of pine needles on the roof has a higher ignitability than a concrete home with a well-maintained defensible space.

    Find out more about defending your home or business against a wildfire.

    Fire Safety Resources for Boulder
    Home Safety Survey
    Boulder County Wildfire
    Wildfire Partners
    Community Wildfire Protection Plan
    Denver Fire Weather Forecast
    Boulder Fire-Rescue
    Preparing for a Wildfire

    Contact ServiceMaster DSI for 24/7/365 emergency fire damage restoration in Boulder, CO and neighboring cities, and use the wildfire prevention and protection resources available.

    5 Ways to Have a Safe and Enjoyable Bonfire and Prevent the Need for Fire Damage Restoration in Denver, CO

    During the summer months, it’s easy to dream of nights by the fire, s’mores roasted just right, and stories told as the moon rises. Less common are thoughts of a loose fire wreaking havoc on your home, neighborhood, business, and beyond. Here are five key steps to have a fun and safe fire with friends, but for those times when a rogue fire does affect your home or business, contact ServiceMaster DSI for fire damage restoration and smoke cleaning in Denver, CO.

    1. Keep it containedFirst and foremost, always build your fire in a proper fire pit.
    2. Keep it small By keeping the fire at a manageable scale, the possibility of wood tipping out of the pit or sparks spreading diminishes greatly.
    3. Keep it cool In keeping the fire small, you also help keep the temperature down. However, this also applies to the outdoor temperature; always check the local fire status to ensure the conditions are safe for a bonfire.
    4. Keep a watchful eye Never leave a fire unattended, even for a moment. If you’re headed in for the night, douse the fire with water until there is no possibility of it reigniting itself.
    5. Keep a fire extinguisher on hand With the off-chance for any bonfire to spread, always have a response ready. A bucket of water, a fire extinguisher, and a cell phone are just a few safety measures you can put in place.

    Even when these five steps are taken, fires are quick to spread, especially in the dry summer weather. In the devastating event of a fire, Denver has a fast response team to implement fire damage restoration efforts as soon as possible to help prevent further damage to your home or business.

    ServiceMaster DSI will help get your space back in working order. Starting with emergency pre-cleaning, climate control, content removal and storage, a complete assessment of damage, water removal and dehydration, wall cleaning, reconstruction, odor removal, vent clearing, and carpet and fabric restoration.

    No matter the extent of the damage, ServiceMaster DSI is here for all your fire damage restoration needs in Denver, CO.

    2013 Floods and the Necessities of Water Damage Restoration in Centennial, CO

    Floods are rarely considered to be an imminent threat to the Denver-Aurora Metro area. Normally, only minor flooding occurs each year during the spring, summer, and fall. There are some years, however, that have proved this weather pattern wrong. In some cases, a combination of circumstances has led to extreme flooding and damages across Colorado. This level of devastation from flooding is not easily fixed, but ServiceMaster DSI is on call to help with emergency water damage restoration in Centennial, CO and other Denver-Aurora Metro areas.

    Freshest in the minds of Denver-Aurora area residents is the flooding in 2013 that affected over 14 counties along Colorado’s Front Range. Nearly 200 miles running north to south were covered with flood waters, leaving over $1 billion in property damages.

    The floods of 2013 began on September 9th when warm air flowing from the south met with the eastern movement of a large cold front. The two air masses stopped above Colorado and began dropping large quantities of rain between Colorado Springs and Fort Collins.

    The heavy rain accumulated quickly, hitting several counties with almost a year’s worth of rain in a matter of days. Boulder County experienced the severest rains, and by September 15th, at least 17 inches of rain—only three inches less than the county’s average annual amount—had flooded the rivers, streets, and buildings of the area.

    Even by October of 2013, communities were still struggling to recover from the damages left after the summer floods. 8 deaths were recorded, several individuals were reported missing, and more than 11,000 people were evacuated. With nearly 19,000 homes damaged and 1,500 destroyed, the floods of 2013 are considered to be one of the deadliest natural disasters in Colorado history.

    26% of Centennial’s yearly precipitation is light and moderate rain. 36% of the annual precipitation comes from thunderstorms causing heavy to severe rains leading to flooding across the county. From June to September, there is a 50% average chance each day that some form of precipitation will fall, making the summer months some with the highest risks of urban flooding causing water damage.

    Don’t hesitate to call our 24/7/365 emergency hotline at 303.288.2900 this summer if flash floods, heavy rains, or other cases of flooding leave your home or business damaged and in need of professional care. Our technicians are prepared to help with expert ServiceMaster DSI water damage restoration in Centennial, CO,and surrounding metro areas.

    Warning Signs of Compulsive Hoarding and When Professional Hoarder Cleanup is Needed in Westminster, CO

    The medical and social awareness of the reality and severity of mental illnesses in the U.S. is growing steadily each year. New organizations and communities designed to help those struggling with mental illnesses are cropping up across the globe at an impressive rate. However, certain mental illnesses still go largely unaddressed, both socially and politically. One of these illnesses so often unmentioned is a form of OCD, depression, and/or anxiety that leads to compulsive hoarding. If you or a loved one suffers from compulsive hoarding, ServiceMaster DSI can help restore the affected home or workspace with our professional hoarder cleanup services in Westminster, CO.

    Understanding and helping a loved one who suffers from compulsive hoarding is difficult in its own right, but when you’re charged with handling a hoarder’s space, it can add greatly to the hardship on your shoulders. Our hoarder cleanup services can tackle this aspect of recovery for you, but understanding the signs of compulsive hoarding can help prevent significant damage in the long run.

    Signs of Compulsive Hoarding

    Your loved one has been diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder or anxiety in the past, both conditions that have hoarding linked to them as a symptom or subtype.

    Your loved one has experienced severe paranoia or experiences some form of post-traumatic stress disorder that could lead to superstitious thoughts or a fear of social situations, forms of contamination, or emotional or physical loss.

    Your loved one has exhibited addictive behaviors in the past, such as addictions to sex, substances, exercise, shopping, or eating.

    Your loved one has exhibited obsessive behaviors concerning the collection of items, food, or digital files.

    Your loved one does not view their behaviors as abnormal or illogical, instead they liken them to an animal storing food for the winter or simply as collecting these items for future use.

    These signs address a more psychologically based history for your loved one that could lead to compulsive hoarding, but there are other, more direct signs as well. If you notice an increase in clutter around your loved one’s house or if they’re having difficulty cleaning and organizing a space, you should take note. Learn more about understanding compulsive hoarding here.

    If you are struggling with a space affected by compulsive hoarding, contact ServiceMaster DSI at 303.288.2900 for comprehensive hoarder cleanup services in Westminster, CO.

    Temporary Weatherization and Emergency Board Up Services in Lakewood, CO

    Coping with a disaster affecting your home or business is often a difficult process in itself, but handling an exposed building during a restoration can make that process even more difficult. When fire, floods, or other disastrous circumstances leave your building exposed to the elements, the damage can quickly accumulate. ServiceMaster DSI teams are experienced and well-equipped to handle all your restoration needs. When it comes to a comprehensive recovery, there is no replacement for our emergency board up services in Lakewood, CO.

    Any open areas in your home or business, such as broken windows, structure wounds, or roof damage, can compromise the safety of untouched areas in your building. While vandals and thieves can play a role in further damaging your property, wind and weather are the primary concerns for buildings undergoing restoration. In cases of long-term restoration or severe damage, any exposed areas in a building must be sealed immediately.

    Our board up services act as a way of temporarily weatherizing your home, protecting it against rain, wind, severe temperatures, humidity, and more. While most cases of weatherizing buildings are designed to make energy consumption more efficient, many methods of weatherization also work to seal a damaged or vacant building against the dangers of the elements.

    These methods can include:

    • Insulating and protecting exposed pipes
    • Installing building wrap and temporary protective siding
    • Securing proper ventilation to protect interiors
    • Installing storm doors and windows
    • Adding insulation where needed
    • Sealing cracks in doors, windows, and other entryways
    • Adding drains and waterproofing unprotected areas
    • Sealing non-functioning air ducts and ventilation passages to the exterior
    • Boarding up damaged areas
    • Securing entire building against trespassersWeatherizing a building is beneficial in many situations, whether its purpose is energy conservation or emergency board up. Our board up teams can quickly secure your home or business, making it ready for a comprehensive recovery.

      For more information about our restoration and emergency board up services in Lakewood, CO,contact ServiceMaster DSI at 303.288.2900 today.

    Managing and Protecting a Building With Emergency Board Up Services in Aurora, CO

    There are times in life when things can go wrong in your home or business, from water damage to structural fires and everything in between. Fixing these problems often requires taking some extra precautions. Contacting the professionals at ServiceMaster DSI is the best choice you can make for comprehensive building restorations. We provide all the necessary steps to keep you safe along the way, including emergency board up services in Aurora, CO.

    Board up services are vital to protecting your building while a restoration is underway. Our experienced technicians seal broken windows and doors, cover holes and gaps, and take any other necessary means to protect your building from the following potential dangers:

    Weather

    Rain: Dry spells are not a guarantee during the time it takes to fully restore a building. Our board up services keep rainwater out of your home or business, preventing water damage, allowing your home to fully dry out, and protecting your belongings from moisture that could lead to mold growth.

    Wind: Strong winds can blow into building openings and damage the interior if it’s not adequately sealed. Even mild winds can leave some damage, and storm winds can be severely detrimental to the recovery of an already-damaged building.

    Temperatures and humidity: Our board up services also protect buildings under restoration from the dangers of unsuitable climates. High humidity and heat in the summer can leave your interior soggy and create a prime environment for mold growth. Without comprehensive board up services, freezing temperatures in the winter can damage plumbing and snow and ice can damage electrical systems.

    Crime

    Vandalism: When buildings are open to the public, there is always the opportunity for vandals to play. Graffiti, arson, and general destruction left in the wake of a vandal can set back a recovery by weeks.

    Theft: Open homes and businesses are tempting to burglars and looters. Even after your belongings and furniture are safely packed and transported to a secure location, there are appliances and more that can be vulnerable to theft in an unsealed building.

    Other trespassers: Unless it’s properly boarded up, squatters and other types of trespassers can also have access to your home or business during the restoration process.

    Our restoration technicians and crews start each recovery project with the necessary precautions to protect your building and belongings against outside threats. For more information about our emergency board up services in Aurora, CO, contact ServiceMaster DSI at 303.288.2900.

    Fixing Summer Storm Damage with Professional Reconstruction Services in Denver, CO

    As Colorado moves away from the chilly, snowy weather, the Denver-Aurora Metro area will finally see some steady, warmer temperatures. As the spring and summer progresses, however, the risks of storm damage increases. If you find yourself coping with storm damage this summer, contact ServiceMaster DSI for professional reconstruction services in Denver, CO.

    The dangers of summer storms, from the smallest thunderstorms to severe tornadoes, come in many forms, including:

    • Lightning: A necessary evil of thunderstorms, lightning can be one of the most detrimental aspects of most summer storms. Lightning strikes can split walls, destroy roofs, cause power outages, and strikes close to buildings can start house fires, damage plumbing, and ruin electrical systems.
    • Strong Winds: Winds stronger than 15 mph have the potential to damage trees, loosen building materials, and scar roofs. Stronger winds can inflict significant damage on entire homes and businesses, yards, and cars. Tornadoes, while rare, are not unknown to Denver residents, and northeast parts of the metro area can experience small tornadoes during the spring and summer. The debris carried and dropped by high winds are one of the commonest causes of building damage during most storms.
    • Heavy Rain: The Denver-Aurora Metro area itself does not experience heavy rainfalls often, but that does not eliminate flooding as a danger. Rainfall over the Rocky Mountains and the Front Range can fill the South Platte River and its tributaries to dangerous levels, causing flooding and water damage throughout the urban areas of Denver County. The occasional heavy rainfall over the city can cause pooling around foundations and basement flooding.
    • Hail: Denver is ranked among the top 10 large cities in the U.S. susceptible to experiencing hail storms. The relentless hammering force of hail can severely damage roofs, windows, cars, and more. Melted hail can flood roads, pool around homes and businesses, and leave severe water damage in buildings.

    Denver is often considered one of the best U.S. cities to live in, but with all the outstanding qualities to be enjoyed comes the dangers of summer storm damage. You can always count on ServiceMaster DSI for comprehensive reconstruction in Denver, CO. Contact us at 303.288.2900 to place a service request.

    Mycotoxins and Why Mold Removal in Boulder, CO is Important

    Everyone hears about the horrors of black mold as one of the most toxic forms of mold, and while there is truth to this, there is also a certain amount of glancing over the details of why black mold is so toxic. Generalizing the anatomy of black mold also leaves out the wide variety of other types of mold that are just as dangerous. In any case of mold infestation, contacting a professional like ServiceMaster DSI for mold removal in Boulder, CO is the best way to eliminate mold in your home or business for the long term.

    The gravity of a mold infestation can only truly be realized with an understanding of why mold is so toxic and how prevalent “black mold levels” of toxicity actually are within the world of mold.

    Why is mold toxic?

    Because most types of mold and fungi are aerobic, they take in oxygen to function, which, along with organic matter and moisture, is consumed metabolically. In return, mold produces toxic substances called mycotoxins. The larger the mold colony and the better the conditions for the consumption of oxygen, organic matter, and water, the greater the quantities of mycotoxins produced.

    Black mold produces a highly toxic group of mycotoxins called Trichothecene Mycotoxins. However, these mycotoxins make up a very large group of toxins that can be produced by many different species of mold, including Fusarium, Myrothecium, Stachybotrys, Trichoderma, Trichothecium, Verticimonosporium, and Cephalosporium.

    To put this in perspective, “black mold” is a general term for the 50 species of Stachybotrys. The six other genuses of Trichothecene Mycotoxin-producing molds have an even greater number of different species.

    What do mycotoxins do?

    Ok, so there are a lot of different molds that produce Trichothecene Mycotoxins, but why should business owners and homeowners take immediate action when a mold infestation begins to colonize?

    The bottom line is that this particular brand of mycotoxin is extremely harmful to human health. When these mycotoxins come into contact with animal cells, they react with the ribosomes, inhibiting the synthesis of proteins at the cellular level. Because protein synthesis is vital for all cellular function, exposure to these mycotoxins can lead to a wide range of health problems, from allergic symptoms to lung cancer.

    If you see signs of mold growth in your home or business, don’t hesitate to call ServiceMaster DSI at 303.288.2900 for immediate mold removal in Boulder, CO.

    Hazardous Materials in Industrial Spills and Trauma Cleanup in Centennial, CO

    Manufacturing facilities and industrial plants undergo rigorous and frequent inspections for a very good reason. Without consistent monitoring of operations and safety procedures, what are usually effective methods of chemical containment can pose dangers to the people, communities, and buildings in the region. Industrial spills do happen, as much as manufacturers do their best to avoid them. When industrial accidents and spills occur, contact ServiceMaster DSI for professional trauma cleanup in Centennial, CO.

    When hazardous waste and chemicals are uncontrolled, the cleanup must be handled with care. Only trained experts and technicians with the right protective and cleanup equipment should approach these situations. The dangerous materials involved in industrial spills often include the following:

    Biohazards: Organisms and microorganisms that pose a danger to human or animal health are considered biohazards. Medical or pharmaceutical facilities regularly produce biohazardous waste, and if containment fails in any way, pathogens and other biohazards could pose significant dangers to those exposed in the area.

    Chemical waste: Most industrial plants handle volatile or otherwise toxic chemicals, and many create chemical waste in the process of manufacturing. These chemical waste products are often contained successfully, but in the case of containment failure or inadequate storage, these materials can contaminate the surrounding environment. When this happens, the waste should be cleaned and treated with professional care.

    Other Industrial waste: Some natural byproducts can be considered toxic when stored in large or concentrated quantities. While these byproducts may be unavoidable in certain types of manufacturing, they should be contained with procedures similar to chemical or biohazardous waste materials. In the case of spills or leaks, these materials should also be treated with similar care.

    Debris: Even if materials like construction or manufacturing debris are not directly toxic to human and animal health, they can still pose some dangers to the community and those exposed. In the event of uncontrolled or widespread debris, our technicians and cleanup experts can treat the scene correctly and safely.

    For more information about industrial hazardous materials and our trauma cleanup in Centennial, CO, contact ServiceMaster DSI at 800.954.9444.

    Health Benefits from Soot Removal and Fire Damage Restoration in Lakewood, CO

    As 2016 leaves winter behind, thoughts of spring cleaning may start to appear on company agendas in and around metro Pittsburgh. While spring cleaning is an important annual ritual, some cleaning requirements rest more heavily on a company’s shoulders. Western Pennsylvanian businesses can rely on ServiceMaster DSI for cleanup and recovery from large-scale losses. Of our services, our fire damage, restoration and soot removal services in Lakewood, CO are some of the most trusted in the country.

    When a building fire is put out, the remainder of the building is saved, but potential damage still remains. Even with bulk debris cleanup and reconstruction, lingering soot poses significant dangers to the health of those exposed to airborne particles.

    Health Risks

    Soot is the result of materials that did not fully combust—that is, the materials in your building that did not fully burn. Soot is primarily composed of carbon, but it can also contain acids, chemicals, metals, dust, and other substances when a fire burns synthetic building materials. Both carbon and other toxic materials in soot are released into the air as liquids or micro-particles. Both forms easily enter the lungs and the blood stream when a person is exposed to soot in the air.

    This exposure can cause a number of health risks including these top three conditions linked to soot exposure:

    Lung cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer-related death in the United States. Lung cancer is commonly linked to cigarette smoke, but similar carcinogenic particles found in cigarette smoke are also found in the soot left after building fires. Find more information about lung cancer here.

    Developmental problems in children are well-recognized dangers of soot exposure. Children and infants exposed to toxic soot can suffer for the rest of their lives from respiratory damage, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and damaged reproductive organs. Learn more here and here.

    Coronary heart disease is another leading cause of death in the U.S., and exposure to the carbon residues and pollutants in soot can only increase the risk of developing heart disease. Learn more about coronary heart disease here.

    Soot removal after a building fire should never be neglected. Even if restoration seems complete, there may be lingering dangers. Contact ServiceMaster DSI for comprehensive fire damage restoration in Lakewood, CO, or call 303-288-2900 for a service request.