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Algonquin IL 847-844-3434 * Crystal Lk IL 815-788-0200 * Palatine, IL 847-991-4900


  • Floodwater will often be contaminated, especially by untreated sewage. Contamination remains after the floodwater has gone and can be hazardous unless simple procedures are followed. Wear rubber boots and gloves in and around the affected property. Wash all cuts and cover with waterproof plasters. Anyone receiving a puncture wound during flood recovery should have a doctor determine whether a tetanus booster is necessary. Small children, pregnant women and people with health problems should avoid flood water and flooded areas until cleanup is complete. If you follow basic advice you should not experience any health problems. However, if you do feel unwell or if you accidentally ingest (swallow) mud or contaminated water and you become ill, you should consult your doctor and tell them your house was flooded.
  • Floodwater can damage buildings severely, particularly if it has been flowing quickly or has been in a property for a long time. Before entering property that has been flooded, the outside of the building should be checked for signs of structural damage.
  • Look for obvious signs of potential instability in the building – deep scouring of the surrounding ground or impact by the water or heavy objects. If there are any such signs, do not enter the building until a structural engineer, or your insurance loss adjuster, has inspected it
  • Be careful when moving any debris that may have been carried onto your property or the surrounding area.
  • Avoid heavy objects (e.g. trees) that may be unstable and could suddenly move and trap or crush you.
  • Do not attempt to move anything yourself that cannot be lifted comfortably.
  • Do not enter a building that has large amounts of sediment either inside it, or piled against the external walls, as the structure may be unsafe and could collapse. Sediments, such as mud or sand, that may be left behind by a flood can result in heavy loadings on a building that it wasn't designed to cope with.
  • Be careful when moving in and around property that has been flooded. Standing water and mud can hide holes, damage to structures and sharp objects. This could include uncovered manholes and drains or roads, paths or building foundations that may have been undermined, as well as broken bottles or glass.
  • Be aware of the risks such as falling, structures collapsing on or under you, cuts from standing or falling onto hidden hazards and slippery sediment. Remember:
    • Do not approach any structure that may be unsafe.
    • Do not approach any fast flowing water or deep standing water. If you enter swiftly flowing water, you risk drowning, regardless of your ability to swim. Shallow standing water can be dangerous for small children.
    • In all cases move slowly and carefully, make sure you are wearing strong footwear and use a stick to check that you are not about to step into a hole or onto a sharp object.
  • Turn off the electricity supply to the property until a qualified electrician has checked out the electrical systems.
  • Use extreme caution in dealing with electricity - if in doubt about the safety of mains supply call your electricity supplier for assistance.
  • After making sure mains supply is safe check all switches, sockets and appliances prior to any use.
  • Do not switch on electrical appliances that have been in contact with the floodwater unless a competent electrician has checked them.
  • Once all electrical safety checks have been made, make sure that you use a circuit breaker with any electrical equipment that you may use in, or to clean or repair, your property.
  • Watch out for any fallen power lines and do not approach them - be aware that there is a potential electric shock hazard.
  • If using a generator for temporary electricity supply, ensure you have been instructed on its use and remember the following points for safe operation:
    • Do not run generators in an enclosed area engines produce carbon monoxide.
    • Do let the engine cool off before re-fuelling.
    • Do connect the appliance directly to the generator. You should not try to hook generators to your home electrical supply box.
  • Turn off the gas supply to appliances that have been flooded (or where their vents/flues may have been affected).
  • Following a flood, use bottled water for washing, drinking or cooking. In extreme cases, warnings will be given by your water authority to boil all water before use.
  • Do not use water from wells in buildings if these have been flooded.
  • Do not eat food that may have been in contact with the flood water or contaminated surfaces.
  • Clean and thoroughly disinfect all taps, utensils, crockery/cutlery, food preparation surfaces etc. before use and during clean-up period.
  • Be careful when approaching any vermin, pests and other animals that may have been disturbed by the flood and taken shelter in your property. These could include mice or rats, stray cats or dogs. If you see vermin in your property contact your Local Pest/Animal Control.
  • Use extreme caution when returning to your area after a flood. Be aware of potential chemical hazards you may encounter during flood recovery.
  • Flood waters may have buried or moved hazardous chemical containers from their normal storage place, including solvents, aerosol cans and industrial chemicals.
  • Mold and Mildew can pose several different health hazards as well. A professional should be contacted for clean up of Mold and Mildew as if left to linger will cause greater health and restoration problems in the long run.
Algonquin IL 847-844-3434 * Crystal Lake IL 815-788-0200 * Palatine, IL 847-991-4900