Experiencing a basement flood is every homeowner's worst nightmare, but when the floodwater is contaminated with sewage, the situation becomes even more distressing. In addition to dealing with the physical damage to your property, you must also face the potential health hazards posed by bacteria and other contaminants in the sewage.
If you find yourself in this unfortunate situation, take a deep breath and follow these crucial steps to minimize the damage and safeguard your well-being:
Prioritize safety: Your immediate concern should be turning off the electricity and gas. Regardless of whether the water is contaminated or not, flooded areas pose a real danger of electrical fires and explosions. Act swiftly to protect yourself and your property.
Remove excess water: Rent a sump pump or wet/dry vacuum to eliminate as much water as possible. Remember to wear gloves and a mask to shield yourself from harmful bacteria while performing this task.
Dispose of contaminated items: Any wet and waterlogged items are likely contaminated and should not be reused. Safely dispose of them or take them to a hazardous waste disposal facility.
Disinfect thoroughly: Use a bleach solution to disinfect the affected area, effectively killing harmful bacteria. Mix one part bleach with nine parts water and apply the solution to all surfaces that came into contact with the floodwater.
Ventilate to remove moisture: Open windows and doors or utilize a fan to improve ventilation and help remove excess moisture from the area.
Check for mold: Damp conditions create an ideal environment for mold growth, so inspect your belongings promptly. If you discover any mold, take immediate steps to eliminate it.
Professional cleaning assistance: If the damage is extensive, consider hiring a professional cleaning company to restore your basement to its pre-flood condition efficiently.
Document the damage: It's essential to document the extent of the damage by taking photographs or videos. This evidence will be crucial in supporting any potential insurance claims.
Contact your insurance company: If you have homeowners insurance, contact your provider to discuss possibly filing a claim to cover the expenses incurred due to the flooding.
Legal consultation: If you suspect that negligence from another party contributed to the basement flooding, seeking legal counsel from an experienced attorney may be in your best interest. They can help you evaluate your options and determine whether you are entitled to seek compensation for the damages you've suffered.
Although basement flooding can be a traumatic experience, it is very important to act quickly to protect your right to recovery. If you have experienced basement flooding recently and are interested in learning more about how to protect your rights, contact Dubin Law today for a free consultation to discuss your situation and how we can help.