Many of our Maui neighbors and friends were severely affected by the flooding that happened in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Olivia last week and our Senior Vice President of Operations, Anthony Nelson made this helpful video to start to help everyone affected with the clean up process. Before a professional water mitigation company (if opting to use one) can come in to address damages. following a flood, this video addresses both safety concerns and the process to follow to help minimize damages as much as possible.
First and foremost, PLEASE if your Maui home was affected by the heavy rains and flooding from Tropical Storm Olivia, click this link to be directed to the Maui County website where you can report your damages. It is important that you take the time to report damages so that when the County does a reassessment on what parts of Maui should be eligible for flood insurance or not, your area is considered. If you do not report your damages in your area, it is likely you won’t have the ability to purchase flood insurance down the road.
Here’s what Anthony covers in the video above regarding proper flood clean up even if you aren’t a professional.
1. Health and safety – Contact and respiratory precautions
a. Contact Precautions - PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
iii. Tyvak coverall that you can wash everyday
iv. Eye protection as you’re moving items around so you dont splash flood waters into your eyes
b. Respiratory Precautions
i. N95 face mask is ok and will work BUT a P 100 half face respirator is going to give you the ultimate level of protection when working in a flood environment
ii. Pay attention to your body - If having a hard time breathing or if you start developing rashes, get out of the flood damaged area.
2. Gross Removal
a. Remove everything that is unsalvageable in your home or property
i. Porous, semi porous, non porous
1. Get Rid of Porous Items – dry wall, most parts of flooring, particle board (expands when things get wet)
2. Get rid of most personal property, mattress, furniture. Don’t try to clean. Not worth hazard
3. Semi porous - can be cleaned in place so you can leave in place - wood (finish or framing), ceramic, concrete , metal, plastic, steel they
3. Pressure Clean affected areas using a pressure washer
a. Things that the flood water touched you want to pressure clean those
b. Be mindful that you need some sort of way to evacuate water, push out the door or vacuum out the water
c. Things that flood water did not touch, still want to clean those items using an antimicrobial disinfectant (i.e. bleach water solution is suitable and acceptable however there are better products out there so just make sure you are reading the label and reading the product information of store bought cleaners for these purposes).
4. Disinfectant -Once everything is wiped down and pressure cleaned, apply a broad application of antimicrobial disinfectant to the affected areas to ensure you’ve eliminated all microbial and toxins that have been in the water.
5. Dry everything – Return wet building materials to a dry state
a. Even if you don’t have the best equipment, check out these options-
i. Box Fans- an affordable option and can be purchased at a hardware store. Turn on until space is dried
ii. Rent professional drying equipment – Cleaners Warehouse (on Maui only)
iii. Get a moisture reader – There are cheap ones available for $30 on Amazon. Not the BEST moisture reader out there, but it will be effective in telling you if the area or surface is wet or if its dry.
a. Mold can start within 72 hours of a flood
b. If you are cutting mold out, the PPE described in the list above is sufficient
c. Clean clean clean! Continue to wipe things down. Mold is readily aerosolized. It can go everywhere and get on anything. Be sure to clean from top to bottom, left to right.
a. Indoor air quality samples can be pulled to let you know if there are things floating around in the air or not.
b. Testing is not mandatory, but if there are small children or if someone in your home is immune compromised, eliminate any concerns for microbials in your home by hiring a professional company to perform testing
i. Air Care Hawaii - (808) 593-9600
ii. Enpro Environmental - (808) 262-0909
For any further questions and photos, please feel free to email: firstname.lastname@example.org