Alabama's Summer Heat
Alabama's summer climate with its extreme temperatures and high humidity can lead to heat-related illnesses and deaths if not treated. Heat-related illnesses occur when the body's temperature control system is overloaded. You can learn the warnings and signal help when needed.
Heat stroke, sometimes called sunstroke, is the most serious heat-related illness. It occurs when the body becomes unable to control its temperature. The body's temperature rises rapidly, the sweating mechanism fails, and the body is unable to cool down. Body temperature may rise to 106 degrees F or higher within 10 to 15 minutes. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if emergency treatment is not provided. Warning signs of heat stroke vary, but include the following:
- An extremely high body temperature (above 103 degrees F)
- Red, hot and dry skin (no sweating)
- Rapid, strong pulse
- Throbbing headache
Heat stroke is a life-threatening emergency, so have another person call 911 for medical assistance and take immediate steps to begin cooling the victim in any of the following ways:
- Get the person to a shady area, cool rapidly in a tub of cool water, place in a cool shower, spray with cool water from a garden hose, splash with cool water, or, if the humidity is low, place in a cool, wet sheet and fan vigorously.
- Monitor body temperature and continue cooling efforts until the person's body temperature drops to 101 to 102 degrees F.
- If emergency medical personnel are delayed, call a hospital emergency room for further instructions.
A person with heat stroke is likely to be unconscious or unresponsive, so he or she cannot safely consume any liquids. Under no circumstances should you give any alcohol to a person with heat stroke or any heat illness.
Heat exhaustion is a milder form of heat-related illness that can develop after several days of exposure to high temperatures and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids. Those most prone to heat exhaustion are the elderly, persons with high blood pressure, and those working or exercising in a hot environment.
Warning signs of heat exhaustion include heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, headache, nausea or vomiting, fainting. The skin may be cool and moist. The pulse rate will be fast and weak, and breathing will be fast and shallow. Untreated heat exhaustion may progress to heat stroke, so seek medical attention if symptoms worsen or last longer than one hour.
Stop all activity and sit quietly in a cool place, drink clear juice or a sports beverage, wait a few hours until the cramps subside and seek medical attention if cramps do not stop in one hour.
Heat cramps are muscle pains or spasms--usually in the abdomen, arms or legs--that may occur in association with strenuous activity. People who sweat a lot during strenuous activity are prone to heat cramps. To relieve them, apply firm pressure on cramping muscles or gently massage them. Give sips of water every 15 minutes for one hour.
Follow these preventive measures to avoid heat illnesses:
- Drink more fluids, and avoid beverages containing alcohol or caffeine
- When temperatures are extreme, stay indoors, ideally in an air-conditioned place
- Take a cool shower or bath, and reduce or eliminate strenuous activities during the hottest time of the day
- Protect yourself from the sun with a wide-brimmed hat, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing and use a sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher
- Never leave pets or people in a parked vehicle.
Who is at Risk?
Although anyone at any age can suffer heat-related illness, some people are at greater risk than others. People aged 65 or older are particularly susceptible to heat-related illnesses and complications that can result during periods of high temperatures and humidity. The risk for heat-related illness and death may increase among people using the following drugs: psychotropics, medications for Parkinson's disease, tranquilizers and diuretics.
All information is www.alabamapublichealth.gov
Summer is a time to enjoy the great outdoors, but it is also important to keep safety in mind.
Consider the following tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association to keep you and your family safe all summer long.
When using a charcoal grill, only use starter fluids designed for barbecue grills; do not add fluid after coals have been lit.
When using a gas grill, ensure the hose connection is tight; check hoses for leaks. Applying soapy water to the hoses will easily and safely reveal any leaks.
Always build a campfire downwind from the tent area. Clear vegetation and dig a pit before building your fire. Extinguish the fire before going to sleep or leaving the campsite.
Store liquid fire starter (not gasoline) away from your tent and campfire and only use dry kindling to freshen a campfire.
SERVPRO of Bessemer/SW Jefferson wishes you a safe and happy summer!
Extreme Heat Safety Tips
Why take the risk? Call a SERVPRO of Bessemer/SW Jefferson, we make it “Like it never even happened.”
Install window air conditioners snugly; insulate if necessary.
Check air-conditioning ducts for proper insulation. n Install temporary window reflectors (for use between windows and drapes), such as aluminum foil-covered cardboard, to reflect heat back outside.
Weather-strip doors and sills to keep cool air in. n Cover windows that receive morning or afternoon sun with drapes, shades, awnings, or louvers. (Outdoor awnings or louvers can reduce the heat that enters a home by up to 80%.)
Keep storm windows up all year
You could always have someone come out and check your home for these conditions as well. We work closely with a lot of contractors so if it's something we can't do, we can refer the right person for the job.
Mold Continuing Education
Every month we host a continuing education course here at our facility for insurance agents and adjusters. They are usually between 2 and 4 hours and listed below is what you would learn if you come to the mold course:
The insurance professional will gain a better understanding of how mold affects today’s society. They will also become more aware of the different entities that participate in the mold restoration industry.
The insurance professional will learn about mold, mold growth requirements and the goals of mold remediation followed by professional vendors. They will also be educated on the science of mold and the dangers/health effects of mold exposure.
Insurance professionals will gain a better understanding of the processes professional vendors use to complete mold remediation projects, including the guidelines recommended by leaders in the mold industry.
The insurance professional will learn the procedures that must take place if any mold remediation is to happen. They will also gain an awareness of common issues related to mold property damages, including education on typical remediation cost parameters and the responses to the mold issue.
Managing Mold Part One
When there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business. Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property. Fortunately, SERVPRO of Bessemer/SW Jefferson has the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem. Although every mold damage scenario is different requiring a unique solution, the general mold remediation process stays the same. The following steps illustrate a “typical” mold removal process.
Call the Team in Green
The mold cleanup and restoration process begins when you call SERVPRO of Bessemer/SW Jefferson. A representative will ask a series of questions to help determine the necessary equipment, resources, and personnel needed.
Inspection and Damage Assessment
Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold using technology designed to detect mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view.
Various containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold and isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process.
SERVPRO of SW Jefferson Cares!
Indoor air quality/environmental professionals evaluate the quality of the air inside a structure. Some specialize and are skilled in testing buildings for the presence of molds. Using various testing devices, these professionals collect air and surface samples to compare the indoor mold spore count to the outdoor environment. If you have concerns about mold, SERVPRO of SW Jefferson can assist you in locating a qualified indoor air quality/environmental professional.
SERVPRO of SW Jefferson cares about proper restoration of your structure. In most water damage situations excessive mold growth is not a problem and SERVPRO of SW Jefferson can safely restore your building to preloss condition. The need to address the presence of mold can be determined by an on-site, indoor environmental inspection. Please keep in mind SERVPRO of SW Jefferson does not interpret insurance policies or coverage; you must consult your insurance company to determine the scope of policy coverage.
Mold Mitigation & Remediation Process Part One
When there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business. Mold can affect your health and can also cause significant damage to your property. Fortunately, SERVPRO of Bessemer/SW Jefferson has the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem. Although every mold damage scenario is different, requiring a unique solution, the general mold remediation process stays the same. The following steps illustrate a “typical” mold removal process.
Call Your Local SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals
The mold cleanup and restoration process begins when you call SERVPRO’s Call Center or SERVPRO of Bessemer/SW Jefferson. A representative will ask a series of questions to help determine the necessary equipment, resources, and personnel needed.
Inspection & Damage Assessment
Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold using technology designed to detect mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose and water which can be hidden from plain view.
Emergency Ready Profile
One of our Sales & Marketing Representatives, Huck, made this list of everything we go over when doing an "ERP" at a facility. It might seem like a lot but it's not very time consuming at all for you if you are the business owner! Plus if anything were to happen to your business you have all this information that is easily accessible.
Facility Phone Number:
Facility Construction Type:
List two contacts if possible
Year remodeled -
Energy Program Certified? -
Multi Tenant Building? -
Blueprint location -
Square footage -
sprinkler vendor phone -
alarm vendor -
alarm vendor phone-
server maintenance/emergency -
Building owner -
Maintenance Director -
Location Info (Do any of these require a key?)
supplemental generator -
Generator backup power -
power shutoff -
water shutoff -
sprinkler shutoff -
roof hatch -
alarm (security) -
Alarm (Fire) -
emergency parking -
entry door -
It may seem early, but hurricane season is currently underway. For the Atlantic, the season begins June 1 and runs through November 30. The Eastern Pacific hurricane season began in mid-May and also ends November 30. Hurricanes can be life-threatening as well as cause serious property threatening hazards such as flooding, storm surge, high winds, and tornadoes. While the primary threat is in coastal areas, many inland areas can also be affected by these hazards, as well as by secondary events such as power outages as a result of high winds and landslides due to rainfall. Preparation is the best protection against the dangers of a hurricane. Plan an evacuation route and your emergency plan, take inventory of your property, and take steps to protect your home or business. For more information and preparation tips, visit the Ready campaign website at www.ready.gov/hurricanes
In early October, a pipe broke in the ceiling over the weekend, causing water to flood and damage much of our 5,000 sq. ft. training center. We had a leadership seminar scheduled there in just a few days with clients flying in from as far as Australia. Our property manager called SERVPRO® and I coordinated with the local Franchise to work out the repairs to be done to our offices. The crew chief and his staff were prompt, professional and kept every commitment they made to us. This was essential as our offices are called “The Elite Center” because of the high-end furnishings and decor we have throughout. They listened and understood the importance of our deadlines and were able to get the offices in working order for the upcoming seminar, and then returned to do the “heavy lifting” and complete the work for an even larger seminar that began in three weeks: all was done on time. I have purposely waited to make sure all the repairs they did held up before writing you, and to see if we have any aftercare problems that we’d need addressed, but there weren’t any. They got it right the first time. As you’re aware, the stress one endures going through a catastrophic loss experience can either be elevated or diminished, based on the quality of the people one is working with to rectify the matter. To that end, SERVPRO® excelled. I recommend them to everyone I find that needs their services, and will continue to do so.