SOURCE: Restoration Industry Association

Restoration Industry Association

November 21, 2013 13:54 ET

RIA Provides Clean Up Tips for After the Tornadoes

ROCKVILLE, MD--(Marketwired - Nov 21, 2013) - The Restoration Industry Association (RIA) has these tips for individuals impacted by the storms that recently swept through the Midwest and now cleaning up in the aftermath:

  • Notify your insurance company of the loss.
  • Keep a notebook to track dates and times of conversations with individuals pertaining to your claim.
  • Secure buildings to prevent vandalism or further damage from weather. Most insurance policies require homeowners to take reasonable action to protect a property from further damage. Tarp or board up open spaces only if safe and appropriate.
  • Shut off main water, gas and electricity supplies.
  • Save receipts for meals, hotels, toiletries, replacement clothing, prescriptions, etc.
  • Take photos of each room or area for future reference and insurance claims. This will provide a digital inventory of some visible contents. More information on what to do can be found in the Consumer section of the RIA website.
  • If electrical appliances, including televisions and computers are damaged, do not turn them back on when power is restored. This can result in electric shock and/or do further damage to the appliance. Electronics can often be cleaned & restored by contractors who know what they're doing.
  • When it is safe to enter a property, look for valuables and important papers (e.g., birth/marriage certificates, wills, tax records, etc.)
  • Beware of scammers offering restoration services. Check references and visit the Restoration Industry Association website to find a contractor.
  • Wear heavy rubber gloves or work gloves and thick-soled shoes, preferably not tennis shoes.
  • Wash your hands frequently -- especially before touching your face or eating.
  • Be careful of sharp items such as broken glass, nails, etc. while searching debris.
  • Drink lots of water to stay hydrated.
  • Do not use bleach to disinfect since it is corrosive and can react with other substances. Use household disinfectants.
  • Hard surfaces can be disinfected as well as some soft goods, depending on washability.
  • Transport computers, art work and musical instruments to a dry environment.
  • Damaged papers and books can be frozen temporarily to prevent further disintegration until they can be restored by a professional.
  • Homeowners may hire any company they choose for restoration work, not just a company recommended by the insurance company.

For clean up tips, information on hiring a contractor, and restoration & remediation in general, visit the RIA website at www.restorationindustry.org and click on the Consumer link.

The Restoration Industry Association (RIA) has member firms worldwide. RIA provides industry leadership, supports science, and promotes best practices for cleaning and restoration through certification, training and standards development. More information is available on the RIA website: www.restorationindustry.org.

Contact Information

  • Media Contact:
    Patricia L. Harman,
    Director of Standards & Communications
    Restoration Industry Association
    Cell: 410.456.3700
    Office: 301.231.6505, ext. 28
    Email Contact