SOURCE: Restoration Industry Association

Restoration Industry Association

September 18, 2013 14:00 ET

Restoration Industry Association Checklist for Steps to Take After the Colorado Flooding

ROCKVILLE, MD--(Marketwired - Sep 18, 2013) - Many Colorado residents face the daunting task of cleaning out their homes and businesses and assessing the damage from recent flooding. The Restoration Industry Association (RIA) offers these practical steps to keep residents safe as they begin the clean-up process:

  • Use a notebook to compile a list of dates, times and people you speak with concerning your claim.
  • Get a copy of your insurance policy. This will determine your limits, as well as your rights and responsibilities to and from your insurance company.
  • Have a clear line of communication with your adjuster.
  • Ask about the process for listing and identifying the value of personal property.
  • Ask about reimbursement for lost rent or business interruption.
  • Ask your adjuster for a sufficient monetary advance for necessary purchases, including enough to cover the first month's rent and security deposit for a temporary dwelling.
  • Save all receipts for meals, hotels, purchases, toiletries, vitamins, cosmetics, etc.
  • Homeowners should select a restoration company, not the adjuster.
  • Check references for all companies retained to perform work on your behalf.
  • Watch for areas with loose or downed power lines and report them to local authorities.
  • Watch for electrical sparks, broken or frayed wires, or burning insulation odors.
  • Turn off electricity at the main switch if possible.
  • Shut off water to the structure.
  • Turn off gas at main valve if trained to do so.
  • If you smell gas or hear blowing/hissing, open a window and immediately leave the building.
  • Do not reenter the building until declared safe by security or emergency management.
  • Buildings may be contaminated so do not enter without current tetanus shots, protective gloves/clothing, hardhat and NIOSH-approved respiratory masks.
  • Cover broken windows with plastic.
  • Do not turn on heat unless truly necessary.
  • Remove any standing water and empty items containing water; remove wet carpets and furnishings.
  • Do not move objects or collections without documenting their condition.
  • Photograph or videotape conditions of contents and the structure.
  •  Make notes of each step of the salvage process.
  • If nothing in the structure is dry, cover everything with loose plastic sheeting.
  • Separate damaged and undamaged items.
  • Label, retrieve and document all broken items.
  • Isolate items with mold and check for new mold growth daily.
  • Make a rough estimate of materials affected and the extent of the damage.
  • Many contents can be cleaned and restored by a knowledgeable contractor.

"Safety should be a primary concern as residents return to their homes and businesses," said RIA President Sam Bergman, CR. "We hope this information will provide some guidance as people begin the cleaning and restoration process, and more information can be found on the RIA website."

For clean up tips, information on hiring a contractor, and restoration & remediation in general, visit the RIA website at and click on the Consumer links to the left of the home page.

The Restoration Industry Association (RIA) has member firms worldwide. RIA provides leadership and promotes best practices through advocacy, standards and professional qualifications for the restoration industry. More information is available on the RIA website:

Contact Information

  • Media Contact:
    Patricia L. Harman
    Director of Standards & Communications
    Restoration Industry Association
    Office: 301-231-6505, ext. 28
    Cell: 410.456.3700
    Email Contact