Updated for 2022! Charlotte County Hurricane and Disaster Preparedness
Be Prepared, Not Scared. Know what to do when disaster comes your way!
With the current Hurricane season in full force, we want our clients, residents of the Port Charlotte area communities, and business partners to have the sources of information you need to be prepared.
Remember that even if your home and/or business is safe and secure from the effects of a storm, that infrastructure systems, including electric, water, sewer, and roads and public transportation may be severely affected, and damage done to those systems can delay your ability to resupply or receive help. Delays in areas affected by major storms and hurricanes can last from hours to days. Please ensure that you and your loved ones have the basic items on the following checklist.
Following are important local links for Charlotte County, including links for Shelters, Evacuation Zones, Emergency News and Updates, and More:Charlotte County Emergency Management Info:
Social Media, News, and Weather Information links:(You may need to verify the accuracy of the information provided in the above links or that the links themselves are still active. We are supplying this information as a service to our community but cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information as some links and information may change or be removed at the organization's discretion. SERVPRO of Venice and Port Charlotte assumes no liability on the accuracy of the links and/or the information provided by the various government and media organizations)
5 Fire Prevention Tips For Port Charlotte Florida Homeowners
After the fire department leaves, call SERVPRO of Port Charlotte to help restore your home or business.
A fire can be one of the most traumatic events in one's life. But the trauma and damage can be lessened if your home and everyone living there is aware of the basic steps of fire preparation. By being prepared in case of a fire, you provide insurance to help keep yourself and your family safe. Here are five tips to help survive a fire.
- Test all smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors in your home. It is great that your home has smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors. But you need to test them regularly (at least every 3 months) to ensure that they are working how they are intended too.
- Leave them sprinklers systems alone! Many newer multifamily home buildings (condos and townhomes) come with sprinkler systems built into the ceilings and walkways. NEVER hang anything from a sprinkler or block its path or tamper with them. You could create a water damage and/or reduce the effectiveness of the sprinkler system.
- Purchase a fire extinguisher: A multi-class fire extinguisher can help prevent a small fire from becoming a whole home disaster. Strategically place them in areas where a fire may happen (kitchen, outdoor bbq area, laundry, garage, utility room, workshop, etc.) and near exit points. A fire extinguisher should only be used when a fire is confined to a small space. Do not try to fight a large fire with an extinguisher.
- Stay alert while cooking. Kitchen fires are often the cause of a residential fire. A grease fire is one of the most common types of kitchen fires. Please remember do NOT use any kind of liquid to extinguish a grease fire. Pouring a liquid of will just spread the grease and potentially cause more damage or injury. if possible and safe to do so, turn off the heat, cover the fire with a baking sheet or large pan to remove the oxygen supply. A class B, BC, or ABC fire extinguisher can be used as a last resort as it will contaminate your kitchen, but better than a full fire. If you are unsure and do not feel you have the ability to handle the fire, evacuate yourself and anyone else in the home and call 911.
- Have an evacuation and ready plan. Prepare a plan and practice your plan with all home residents. Have a clear plan to know how to evacuate your home in case of a fire or other disaster and also a safe spot where to meet at afterwards.
Despite how prepared we are there are potential events that result in fires that are uncontrollable and that cause widespread damage to a property. That is where SERVPRO of Port Charlotte steps in to help. Fire cleanup should be left up to a professional restoration company that can aid in minimizing the fire damage as much as possible.
If you need any help with residential or commercial fire damage and clean up, please call us 24/7 365 days a year: SERVPRO of Port Charlotte, 941-629-0966
Protect Your Port Charlotte Business with these Mold Damage Tips!
Call on SERVPRO to protect your business from interruptions due to mold!
Mold! That four letter word that seems to be everywhere! When most folks think of mold, they think of issues within residential homes and condominiums. However, mold can affect your business office, warehouse, and commercial building too. While most business often have more rigorous in-house inspections and year round maintenance or facility managers, mold can still appear at your business location, especially after a storm, water or fire damage, or other catastrophic event. It can often go unnoticed in areas that are not frequently used, from storage rooms or that office area no one has used for a while, or under cabinets, crawl spaces, and other seldom used areas.
If you notice mold or your employees or clients have mentioned a 'musty smell', you should take the following steps to mitigate the mold as soon as possible, because it will not go away on its own!
- Find the source! Mold needs four things to survive and grow/spread: Food (any organic material, including dust!), Moisture/Humidity, Oxygen, and an ideal temperature range around 75-88 degrees, however some mold have optimal growth at lower temperatures, even as low as 60 degrees Fahrenheit according to some studies.
- Fix the source! If you have an active water intrusion or leak, get it repaired and dried out as soon as possible. The longer the water damage continues, the larger your challenge for cleanup will be. If your HVAC system is not running optimally, get it tested and repaired as soon as possible. Most buildings today are built very airtight, with little natural airflow to help regulate air fluctuations, so having an efficient and well running HVAC system is very important in the Venice Florida area.
- However, if you do have mold in a certain area, you want to close off the HVAC returns and vents in that area to prevent the spread of spores to other areas of your business, and do NOT blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
- Do not attempt to clean with bleach or other disinfectants as these often do not fully remove the mold roots and when sprayed directly on the mold, can create spores that spread by going airborne.
- If you suspect you have mold, give SERVPRO of Venice a call. We will do a no-cost walk-through of your property and help you with the next steps, which often involve having a state licensed Industrial Hygienist (IH) or Mold Assessor to provide testing and developing a protocol for mitigation.
Please remember this: There is no such thing as 'mold removal'. Mold naturally found everywhere, but mold mitigation is what we do. If you have a mold problem, contact SERVPRO of Port Charlotte to help make it "Like it never even happened."
What to do in Port Charlotte - Updated 2022
There is so much to do for fun family time in the Port Charlotte area!
If you are a new homeowner in the Port Charlotte area, you may be curious what the locals and snowbirds do around here for fun!
The first answer you will receive is most likely "Get Outdoors" as most activities in Charlotte County involve the outdoors. Fishing, kayaking, golfing, shark tooth hunting, beachcombing, boating, pickleball, hiking, and biking are among the many fun things to do around here.
A nearby local attraction to escape the heat is the North Port Aquatic Center, located just a few miles away from Port Charlotte. With tall water slides (including the "Barracuda Blast drop slide"), lazy river, splash zone, heated competition pool, snack shack, and lounging areas, there is something for kids and adults of all ages.
Another fun Port Charlotte park with a splash pad, batting cages, baseball fields, pavilions, grills, walking trails, restrooms, and more is the 25 acre Atwater Community Park.
We also have a local baseball stadium, where the Tampa Bay Rays pre-season games are played, and the Tippecanoe Environmental Park is a 380 acre upland and wetland hikers paradise.
If you have a business in the area, or are just looking for a way to network and meet others, there are plenty of opportunities for that with local chapters of Lion's Club, VFW, American Legion, along with the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce.
Dining in the area is great, with many local eateries and nationally known chains in the area, including many that are located along Charlotte Harbor, Englewood Beach, Manasota Key, Venice Island or other waterways that give you beautiful views while you enjoy being out.
For more information, you can also check out the Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach tourism website located here: https://www.pureflorida.com/ and another good resource for families is the Fun4PortCharlotteKids.com page.
Fire Damage Restoration for Your Port Charlotte Commercial Property
Call SERVPRO of Port Charlotte for professional and fast response for fire damage to your commercial property.
SERVPRO of Port Charlotte is Qualified to Restore a Fire Damaged Commercial Building in Charlotte County
Q: What happens to my building in the Port Charlotte area if I do not quickly get fire damage restoration service after having fire damage, and how long should I wait to take action?
A: The fast answer is immediately! There are many reasons to act upon your fire damaged business with great speed. From the business standpoint, every day required to clean up, repair, restore your building, and reopen the doors is lost revenue. Immediately contact your insurance agent and then SERVPRO.
This commercial fire restoration company can promptly respond and mitigate the water and fire damage upon agreement. Delaying the fire restoration process in Port Charlotte can also compound the damage caused by the water used to extinguish the flames. Below are some factoids that suggest an immediate response to a fire-damaged structure is paramount.
The ash residue left from the fire can lead to permanent damage. Ashes are highly acidic and can corrode materials made of metal or glass. Glass windows may be permanently etched, and your drywall may be damaged and discolored beyond repair. As metallic materials corrode, water leakage from plumbing may occur and lead to increased water damage requiring further repairs.
Q: As a business owner, why should I consider hiring an experienced fire damage restoration company like SERVPRO?
A: These technicians have the training, tools, equipment, and experience to handle any fire damage incident to a commercial building. They respond immediately to begin the restoration to get you back to work. SERVPRO experts are IICRC certified.
Q: How do your technicians perform fire damage restoration services for me?
A: The SERVPRO technicians begin the building restoration process by inspecting the structure, assessing the damage, and determining the proper course of action, starting with the clean-up. They complete a comprehensive clean-up and eliminate ashes, smoke, soot, and debris. Because the odors caused by smoke may permeate walls and crevices, our professionals use special machines called thermal foggers to release particulates into difficult-to-reach corners and voids to eliminate smoke odor. SERVPRO can secure and repair the building expediently. This is a type of one-stop shopping. Let's quickly get your doors reopened.
Commercial Building Fire Damage Restoration Services
When it comes to commercial restoration services, SERVPRO is a leader in the industry. Available 24/7, SERVPRO of Port Charlotte responds quickly to your Jacksonville business's fire, water, and mold damage emergencies. Learn more about our commercial restoration services. Call us at (941) 484-7777.
Call SERVPRO of Port Charlotte for your Sewage and Toilet Overflow Cleanup and Restoration
Do not wait to call for help when your home or office experiences a sewage backup or toilet overflow!
When a sewage backup or toilet overflow happens in your home or office, trying to cleanup without the right tools and expertise can be dangerous. Sewage cleanup is considered an emergency since the water may contain viruses, bacteria, and other microbes that cause serious illnesses. SERVPRO of Port Charlotte has the specialized training and equipment to quickly and safely clean contaminants like sewage.
When choosing a biohazard cleanup company, consider their experience and training. As a cleanup and restoration company, SERPVO of Port Charlotte has the ability to handle a wide range of pathogens and will ensure the cleanup process will go smoothly regardless of any unexpected developments.
Sewage backups pose significant property damage and health risks. SERVPRO is an Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification (IICRC) certified firm with Applied Microbial Remediation Technicians. Their biohazard cleanup crew can remove the sewage, clean all surfaces, and eliminate odors along with harmful microorganisms.
WHAT TO DO IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING A SEWAGE BACKUP
Following are several steps that should be taken in order to help prevent the sewage backup from spreading.
- Be sure to remove any children, pets, and seniors from the home. Do not allow them back into the area until the damage is completely fixed and safe.
- Keep yourself safe by putting on any protective clothing such as rubber boots, rubber gloves, eye protection, a face mask, and more.
- If the distribution panel is above water, switch off the electricity by using a dry wooden stick and rubber gloves.
- Turn off the water in your home, and do not use any water for bathing, drinking, washing hands or dishes, and others. This water may be contaminated.
- You may need to contact your utility companies and have them shut off the supply to your home if you cannot safely turn them off yourself.
- Open your home’s doors and windows to allow proper air ventilation. You won’t want to use your home’s AC as this will spread contaminated air throughout your home.
- Remove any items from the area that are dry and not contaminated.
- You can add small amounts of chlorine bleach into the standing water to slightly disinfect.
- Contact your insurance company and notify them of the backup. You’ll want to take pictures of any damage that the sewage backup caused. This will come in handy as proof when filing your claim.
- Never attempt to unclog the drains. You will need to clean up the sewage spill before taking any further action.
For 24/7 service for any water damage, sewage backup, and toilet overflow, call SERPVRO of Port Charlotte at 941-629-0966
Water Damage Mistakes to Avoid in Your Home!
For Fast and Professional Water Damage Cleanup and Restoration, call on SERVPRO of Port Charlotte
Common Homeowner Water Damage Mistakes to Avoid!
When you home suffers from a water damage event, the process of minimizing damage and restoring a property to its original condition can be stressful time. Unfortunately many homeowners are not fully aware of the proper process for cleanup and restoration and make common mistakes while trying to help. These mistakes can make restoring a home even more challenging.
Following are some helpful tips that can help homeowners avoid common mistakes, which will reduce the cost, time, and stress for making a water damage event "Like it never even happened."
Mistake #1: Trying to self-clean and restore their home after a water damage event.
We have all been there; we want to save time and money so we try to take on a project in our home. Water damage to your home should not be treated as a normal project. If you the amount of water is covering multiple rooms or has shown damage to cabinets or other structural components, you do not want to just try and mop it all up and put a fan or two on it. The problem is most homeowners do not have the right experience and equipment to properly handle a water damage. Water easily seeps into areas that you may not know to look or have the ability to check. Properly drying out building materials is a difficult task and one best left to a professional.
Mistake #2: Not Calling a Professional Soon Enough.
One of our taglines at SERVPRO is 'Faster to any size disaster.' This isn't just a fancy and good sounding branding effort, it is because arriving and acting fast is a critical aspect of effective water damage restoration. Water tends to spread fast, traveling behind walls, cabinets, appliances, and underneath flooring. Once that happens, mold can grow and further damage walls, furniture, and other materials. Mold can begin to grow less than 24-48 hours after water exposure depending on other circumstances in the home (humidity level, pre-existing water damage, temperature, etc.).
To quickly find the source of the water damage and shut it off, and then to immediately begin the water extraction and drying process is crucial for your home's restoration. Calling a professional water damage cleanup and restoration company is the best way to do that.
Mistake #3: Not Taking Safety Precautions.
Being in a home that recently suffered from a recent water damage evet can be dangerous, especially if the water damage came from flood waters, sewage back up or other 'category 3' type sources. Along with potential biohazard contaminations, potential slips and falls from wet flooring and stairways can also create a dangerous situation. Care must be taking when operating any electronic device or appliance because turning on electronics or touching electronic devices can result in electric shocks or further damage to the property.
Saturated building materials can fail, and debris can lead to slips and falls. The best thing a homeowner can do after eliminating the source of the water (if possible) and calling a water restoration company is to leave the building and stay out.
Mistake #4: Not Realizing the True Amount of Damage to Your Home.
The amount of damage caused by a water damage event isn’t always immediately visible. If you take the "Do It Yourself" approach and only clean up the visible water, you will most likely discover mold or unpleasant odors lingering in furniture, floors, and walls in the near future.
To properly evaluate the true amount of damage from a water event, you must follow through with industrial standards for cleanup and deodorization. This may include antimicrobial treatments or sanitization processes and is something a professional restoration company is best suited to handle.
A proper evaluation of the damage is also vital for insurance reasons. Some insurance providers will deny claims where homeowners attempt repairs themselves or delay calling a professional to document the damage. The best way to ensure a policy covers the full cost of a restoration is to work with a reputable restoration company and contact them immediately.
SERVPRO of Port Charlotte works with all local, state, and national insurance companies, and is a preferred vendor for many of them. If your home suffers from a water damage event, call us 24/7 365 days a year at 941-629-0966. We are here to help.
How to Tell the Difference Between Mildew and Mold in Your Port Charlotte Home or Business
If you suspect mold damage in your home or business, give the professionals at SERVPRO of Port Charlotte a call at 941-629-0966
While any fungal growth in your home or business is unpleasant, knowing the difference between mildew and mold is important before starting a remediation project to remove the fungi and prevent further damage.
Differences between Mildew and Mold
Telling the difference between mildew and mold can be difficult, but there are some clues that can help you determine the type of fungus in your property. Mildew commonly has the following characteristics:
- Powdery or fluffy appearance
- Gray or white color that darkens with time
- Relatively easy to remove
Mold, on the other hand, is often described by the following adjectives:
- Slimy or fuzzy
- Black, green or other color depending on the type
- Invasive and harder to remove
In some instances, a homeowner or maintenance staff may be unable to determine the type of fungus present. In such cases, a professional hygienist or air quality inspector can determine the best course of action to take.
So while there are many differences between the two fungi, they do share a key similarity: Both mildew and mold need moisture to thrive. This means that mildew and mold can both be prevented by keeping your home dry, with an indoor humidity below 50%. If necessary, run a dehumidifier to keep within those levels. Air conditioning can also help dry out your home. Mildew and mold easily grow in higher moisture areas of a home or business, such as in a crawlspace, bathroom, wash room, etc. Look for signs of fungal growth in these areas when doing routine cleaning or inspections. Both mildew growth and mold damage are easier to mitigate if caught early.
Generally speaking, mildew is easier to clean than mold growth. There are a variety of cleaners available that can kill mildew. As long as you work in a well-ventilated area and wear a mask and gloves, you should be able to safely clean mildew growth yourself. However, mold growth often needs to be professionally cleaned, especially if the infestation is large.
If you need help with either mildew or mold damage in your Port Charlotte Florida home, a certified restoration company such as SERVPRO of Port Charlotte can help. We have the equipment and experience to address the issue safely and get your home back to normal. Call 941-629-0966 for fast response to your mold problem.
For Fast Cleanup and Restoration Response, Call SERVPRO of Port Charlotte!
Port Charlotte Residents: We provide immediate service day or night!
SERVPRO of Port Charlotte provides 24-hour emergency service and is dedicated to being faster to any-sized disaster in the Port Charlotte area. We can respond immediately to your emergency and have the expertise to handle your restoration or cleaning needs.
- 24-Hour Emergency Service
- Faster to Any-Sized Disaster
- Highly Trained Restoration Technicians
- A Trusted Leader in the Restoration Industry
- Locally Owned and Operated
- Advanced Restoration and Cleaning Equipment
Have Questions? Call Us 24/7 – 941-629-0966
Whether your Port Charlotte home needs emergency flood damage or your upholstery cleaned, you can depend on us. Our technicians have extensive cleaning and restoration training and can make your property look its best. Learn more about our residential services:
- Water Damage Restoration
- Fire Damage Restoration
- Mold Remediation
- Storm Damage Restoration
- Cleaning Services
- Building/Reconstruction Services
There's never a convenient time for fire or Water damage to strike your Port Charlotte commercial property. Every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when the need arises for professional cleaning or emergency restoration services we have the training and expertise to respond promptly with highly trained technicians to get your property back to business. Learn more about our commercial services:
- Commercial Water Damage Restoration
- Commercial Fire Damage Restoration
Charlotte County Wildfire Preparation Tips
Be Prepared for a Wildfire in Florida
Wildfires! When most folks think of wildfires, they envision the massive fires that often rage in the western parts of the United States western states of California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Idaho, or in Central and South American rain forests, or Australia. While Florida is fortunate to have a rainy season, the dry season in Southwest Florida can create very arid conditions, and because our vegetation and timber are loaded with 'fuel', wildfires in Florida burn fast and hot. The 200+ acre wildfire in Placida and Rotunda West (February 2020) serves as a strong reminder of how close homes here in Charlotte County can be affected by a fast moving wildfire.
Following are some tips from the National Fire Protection Agency on how to best prepare before, during, and after a wildfire threatens our community.
Before a wildfire threatens your area…
In and around your home
- Clear leaves and other debris from gutters, eaves, porches and decks. This prevents embers from igniting your home.
- Remove dead vegetation and other items from under your deck or porch, and within 10 feet of the house. Learn more about the basics of defensible space on the Firewise website.
- Screen or box-in areas below patios and decks with wire mesh to prevent debris and combustible materials from accumulating.
- Remove flammable materials (firewood stacks, propane tanks) within 30 feet of your home’s foundation and outbuildings, including garages and sheds. If it can catch fire, don’t let it touch your house, deck or porch.
- Wildfire can spread to tree tops. Prune trees so the lowest branches are 6 to 10 feet from the ground.
- Keep your lawn hydrated and maintained. If it is brown, cut it down to reduce fire intensity. Dry grass and shrubs are fuel for wildfire.
- Don’t let debris and lawn cuttings linger. Dispose of these items quickly to reduce fuel for fire.
- Inspect shingles or roof tiles. Replace or repair those that are loose or missing to prevent ember penetration.
- Cover exterior attic vents with metal wire mesh no larger than 1/8 inch to prevent sparks from entering the home.
- Enclose under-eave and soffit vents or screens with metal mesh to prevent ember entry.
- Learn more about how to protect your home and property at www.firewise.org.
Creating an emergency plan
- Assemble an emergency supply kit and place it in a safe spot. Remember to include important documents, medications and personal identification.
- Develop an emergency evacuation plan and practice it with everyone in your home.
- Plan two ways out of your neighborhood and designate a meeting place.
- Learn more about emergency preparedness planning on NFPA’s emergency planning webpage.
In your community:
Read more at the following link: Wildfire preparedness tips