Transportation and Works
September 29, 2010
Public Advisory: Safety Advice for Residents Returning Home
Fire and Emergency Services – Newfoundland and
Labrador is reminding home owners to keep safety top of mind as the
clean- up continues following Hurricane Igor. Many affected homes should
be inspected by trained professionals to avoid progressive problems and
issues. Residents are encouraged to contact their insurance companies
and to take steps themselves to mitigate any further damage. Mould and
other issues can lead to serious health problems and measures should be
taken to keep families safe from harm.
Re-entering Your Home
- Please ensure authorities have advised that it
is safe to re-enter the home.
- If the main power switch was not turned off
prior to flooding, do not re-enter the home until a qualified
electrician has determined it is safe to do so.
- Use extreme caution when returning to the home
after a flood.
- Do not use any appliances, heating, pressure,
or sewage systems until electrical components have been
thoroughly cleaned, dried, and inspected by a qualified
electrician. Appliances that may have been flooded pose a risk
of shock or fire when turned on.
- The main electrical panel must be cleaned,
dried, and tested by a qualified electrician to ensure that it
- Depending on where residents live, the
municipal or provincial inspection authority is responsible for
the permitting process required before the electric utility can
reconnect power to the home.
Ensuring Building Safety
- Make sure the building is structurally safe.
- Look for buckled walls or floors.
- Watch for holes in the floor, broken glass and
other potentially dangerous debris.
- Flood water can be heavily contaminated with
sewage and other pollutants. It can cause sickness and
- If through colour, odour or taste you suspect
that your drinking water has been contaminated, don't drink it.
- Household items that have been flood-damaged
will have to be discarded according to local waste disposal
regulations, but not until such time as adjustors have had a
chance to review the items. Please keep in a specific area of
your property, covered with a tarp.
- Store all valuable papers that have been
damaged in a freezer until they are needed (after the cleanup,
consult a lawyer to determine whether flood-damaged documents,
or just the information in them, must be retained).
- Record details of flood damage by photograph
or video, if possible.
- Register the amount of damage to the home with
both the insurance agent and local municipality immediately.
The Provincial Government is moving forward with its
provincial disaster assistance program for those who qualify, however
home owners need to take initial steps to ensure safety is top of mind.
FES-NL advises if you require further information or have questions,
please call 1-888-395-5611.
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Public Relations Specialist
Fire and Emergency
Services-Newfoundland and Labrador
2010 09 29