Recent Posts

What is Mitigation?

12/22/2018 (Permalink)

FEMA-What is Mitigation?

Mitigation is the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. In order for mitigation to be effective we need to take action now—before the next disaster—to reduce human and financial consequences later (analyzing risk, reducing risk, and insuring against risk). It is important to know that disasters can happen at any time and any place and if we are not prepared, consequences can be fatal.

Effective mitigation requires that we all understand local risks, address the hard choices, and invest in long-term community well-being. Without mitigation actions, we jeopardize our safety, financial security and self-reliance.

  • Disasters can happen at anytime and anyplace; their human and financial consequences are hard to predict.
  • The number of disasters each year is increasing but only 50% of events trigger Federal assistance.
  • FEMA's mitigation programs help reduce the impact of events—and our dependence on taxpayers and the Treasury for disaster relief.

FEMA's Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration (FIMA) manages the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and implements a variety of programs authorized by Congress to reduce losses that may result from natural disasters. Effective mitigation efforts can break the cycle of disaster damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage. FEMA's mitigation and insurance efforts are organized into three primary activities that help states, tribes, territories and localities achieve the highest level of mitigation: Risk Analysis, Risk Reduction, and Risk Insurance. Through these activities and FEMA's day-to-day work across the country, communities are able to make better mitigation decisions before, during, and after disasters.

Risk Management

Government agencies must understand the full impact of natural hazards using applied multi-hazard engineering science and advanced technology in order to effectively plan to reduce natural hazard effects.


The goal of risk reduction is to reduce the risk to life and property, which includes existing structures and future construction, in the pre and post-disaster environments. This is achieved through regulations, local ordinances, land use, and building practices and mitigation projects that reduce or eliminate long-term risk from hazards and their effects.

Federal Insurance

The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) goal is to reduce the impact of flooding on private and public structures by providing affordable insurance for property owners. The program encourages communities to adopt and enforce floodplain management regulations, which will mitigate the effects of flooding on new and improved structures.

The NFIP is helping communities reduce the socio-economic impact of disasters by promoting the purchase and retention of both Risk Insurance and National Flood Insurance.

Mitigation's Value to Society

Mitigation is valuable to society because:

  • It creates safer communities by reducing loss of life and property damage. For example, the rigorous building standards adopted by 20,000 communities across the country are saving the nation more than $1.1 billion a year in prevented flood damages.
  • It allows individuals to minimize post-flood disaster disruptions and recover more rapidly. For example, homes built to NFIP standards incur less damage from floods. When floods cause damage, flood insurance protects the homeowner's investment, as it did for the more than 200,000 Gulf Coast residents who received more than $23 billion in payments following the 2005 hurricanes.
  • It lessens the financial impact on individuals, communities, and society as a whole. For example, a recently updated study by the National Institute of Building Sciences shows that federally funded mitigation grants, on average, can save the nation $6 in future disaster costs for every $1 spent on hazard mitigation. The report also demonstrates for the first time that, on average, investments made by local communities and homeowners in hazard mitigation measures that exceed standard building codes can save the nation $4 for every $1 spent.

Mitigation Best Practices Portfolio

FEMA's Best Practices Portfolio is a collection of ideas for activities, projects, and potential funding sources that can help reduce or prevent the impacts of disasters. By sharing your first-hand experience of damaged areas, you help spread the word of how important, effective and life-saving mitigation can be. Stories that focus on successful mitigation projects and practices implemented after a disaster may encourage communities and individuals to implement new mitigation efforts to prevent future damages.The portfolio is a collection of ideas for activities, projects, and potential funding sources that can help reduce or prevent the impacts of disasters. By sharing your first-hand experience of damaged areas, you help spread the word of how important, effective, and life-saving mitigation can be. Stories that focus on successful mitigation projects and practices implemented after a disaster may encourage other communities and individuals to implement new mitigation efforts to prevent future damages.

Mitigation Fact Sheets

This series of Fact Sheets provide information about:

  • FEMA's Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration (FIMA)
  • Mitigation Grant Programs
  • National Earthquake Hazard Reduction Program
  • National Flood Insurance Program
  • Additional Mitigation Programs and Activities
  • Environmental and Historic Preservation

Do You Know How to Use a Fire Extinguisher?

11/15/2018 (Permalink)

Do you know where the closest fire extinguisher is in your home or place of work?! And more importantly, do you know how to use it? Both of these things are very important to know so you know what to do in case of an emergency and to keep you safe. Listed below are some tips on when to use a fire extinguisher during an emergency.

  1. The outside of the extinguisher is clean, and all parts are operable and not damaged or restricted
  2. You have identified an escape, and the fire is not between you and the route
  3. You have alerted other occupants, and someone has called the fire department
  4. You are safe from the toxic smoke produced by the fire
  5. The fire is contained to a single object, such as a wastebasket

These tips are good to know so you can safely use a fire extinguisher. It is also good to familiarize yourself with the location of the fire extinguisher in your home and workplace. Stay safe!

Does Your Home Have a Fire Escape Plan?

9/28/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Does Your Home Have a Fire Escape Plan? kitchen area with fire damage

Every household or commercial business should develop a plan in case of an emergency fire. Fire outbreaks can not only cause a lot of home calamity, but also loss of life. The National Fire Protection Association recommends bring your family together to make a plan, including inspecting all possible exits and routes. So how do you make a fire escape plan, and what should it include? Here are a few things you should consider.

Planning a Fire Escape Basics

  • There should be two ways to get out of every room, and all members of your household should be aware of them.
  • Add escape ladders to areas or homes above the second floor, especially sleeping areas. Train household members in how to use them and store them near windows.
  • Practice home fire drills periodically (at least twice a year) so that everyone knows how to do one in less than two minutes. The objective of a fire drill is to practice, not to frighten, so a planned drill can be just as effective.
  • Teach younger family members the stop, drop, and roll method for dealing with clothes that have caught fire.
  • Make special arrangements in your plan for infants or anyone with a disability. Assign someone to assist disabled family members in case of an emergency.
  • Install smoke alarms inside and outside of every sleeping area of your home.
  • Find an outside meeting place that’s a safe distance away from your home that everyone can reach after an escape. Make sure everyone is aware of its location.
  • Always choose the safest escape route, meaning the one with least amount of smoke and heat. Practice getting low and traveling beneath smoke when you perform a fire drill.
  • Close doors on the way out during a fire to slow it down and give you more time to safely escape. In situations where fire prevents you from leaving the home, you should practice “sealing yourself in for safety” as part of your fire escape plan. Put as many doors between you and the fire as possible, and cover air vents to prevent smoke from reaching you. Open windows at the top and bottom so fresh air can get in.
  • Under no circumstances should you ever go back inside a burning building. Do not try to retrieve belongings. If someone is still inside, inform the fire department dispatcher when you call. Only a trained firefighter has the skills and equipment needed to perform a rescue.

Why Professional Water Removal is More Effective than DIY Methods

9/28/2018 (Permalink)

After a water emergency that floods a home or business, the last thing that most people want to deal with is a bill for cleaning up the damage. This is what leads many homeowners to attempt water extraction on their own instead of calling a professional.
If you're in need of water removal in the Hattiesburg or surrounding area you may be tempted to save money by trying to get rid of the excess water on your own. However, going this route typically has more consequences than benefits and will result in greater losses of time, money, and your possessions in the long run. Here's why calling SERVPRO for professional water removal is a smart move.
Professional water extraction works extremely well.
While some homeowners resort to opening windows and doors, turning on ceiling fans, and blotting towels around the house, SERVPRO has powerful equipment that ensures efficient and thorough water removal. We're also often able to restore documents, books, furnishings, and electronic devices affected by water damage, plus we'll get your home's humidity back to an appropriate level.
Many water emergencies are hazardous.
If your house has been flooded with gray or black water, such as that from a natural disaster, backed up sewer line, or a leaky toilet, expert attention to the problem is best. These types of water are risky for untrained persons to handle because it involves disease causing waste and debris. This is the type of material that can't simply be put out with the week's garbage and needs proper and safe disposal.  We're knowledgeable about how to get rid of contaminated waste during water extraction, so there are no lingering health risks to your family or pets.
It's important to consider mold and mildew.
One reason that so many homeowners who attempt DIY water removal eventually end up calling a pro is unseen damage caused by mold and mildew. While your flooring and possessions may look and feel dry, without proper water extraction and controlling humidity mold and mildew will thrive, cause off odors, and ruin your home's structure along with your possessions and furniture. SERVPRO technicians are skilled at protecting against the growth of mold and mildew and have effective strategies to combat it. 
At SERVPRO of Hattiesburg, we know how important it is to get your home back in order as quickly as possible. We'll help you mitigate the costs of any water emergency by restoring your possessions and preventing future damage to your home. For more information about our water removal services or to receive a quote, call us at (601)-544-0512.

Restoring Your Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

9/28/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events at Pearl River/Hancock and Southwest Harrison county commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of Pearl River/Hancock and Southwest Harrison Counties

SERVPRO of Pearl River/Hancock and Southwest Harrison Counties specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

How to Know When you Need a Mold Remediation Company

9/24/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation How to Know When you Need a Mold Remediation Company Chris with SERVPRO in Hattiesburg gives a thumbs up that the mold remediation job is going well!

Mold is a hazard that can exist in a home for months or years before being detected. Although mold might seem harmless, it is not. It is something that most homeowners cannot deal with alone. Mold can destroy a house. It is important to know when you need to contact SERVPRO.

Why You Cannot Ignore Mold in the Home
 Mold can grow and slowly destroy the structure of the house. It can rot wood and drywall. It can decompose carpets. mold damage can make a home unlivable.

Removing Mold Yourself
It is tempting to think that you can deal with a mold problem yourself. This might be true if you see just a small amount on a non-porous surface like a metal fixture or a plastic bracket. Bleach can usually kill that mold. Unfortunately, if you spot mold, then there is likely much more on porous surfaces like your walls. It might even be hidden between the walls, under sinks or inside carpets. You do not want to rely on do-it-yourself solutions if you detect mold in your home.

When to Call SERVPRO
You should call a mold remediation company whenever you find a significant amount of mold in one place, or patches of mold spread throughout your house. A remediation company, like SERVPRO, will test your home for mold, seek out the source of the mold and then remove it. They can often repair or stop any mold damage. The company will be able to use special tools to find hidden mold in your home. They will remove the mold in a way so that spores are not redistributed into other rooms. It is always best to call SERVPRO when you find patches of mold in the house.

Preventative Actions to Take
After SERVPRO finishes, you can do a few things to prevent future problems. Start by ensuring your house is well ventilated to remove excess moisture. Check your insulation since it acts as a moisture barrier. Maintain a good temperature so that the air is not overly humid. If you do experience humidity problems, then run a dehumidifier during the day. These actions can slow or prevent the growth of mold. 

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

We live and work in this community too; we might even be neighbors. As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO is close by and ready to help with your mold-damaged property. We are proud to be an active member of the community and want to pitch in and help make our community the best it can be.

When a major storm or event occurs, we can call upon our national network of 1,650 SERVPRO Franchises and special Disaster Recovery Teams if we need additional resources or personnel.

Storm Damage Cleanup and Restoration

9/21/2018 (Permalink)

Storm and flood damage can be devastating. Immediate action is needed, and you need the company with storm damage experience. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have the expertise and the resources to handle any size disaster and can respond immediately to storm and flooding conditions.

Have Storm or Flood Damage?
Call Us Today 1-800-SERVPRO

SERVPRO Franchise Professionals

Why Choose a SERVPRO Franchise Professional?


They’re Faster to Any Size Disaster

SERVPRO Franchise Professionals are dedicated to responding immediately to water and storm damage emergencies. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces cost.

Learn More


They're Highly Trained Water Damage Specialists

They specialize in water and storm damage restoration, the cornerstone of our business. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have extensive water damage restoration training that enables them to get you back to normal.

  • Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • Applied Structural Drying Technicians

Learn More


They Have the Resources to Handle Storms and Disasters

SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have a national network of over 1,700 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Team strategically located throughout the country.

Learn More

Regardless of the Storm Damage, They Can Help

Storms occur with little warning and can be especially devastating, so you’ll need the company that you can trust to rise to the occasion. Regardless of the type of storm, SERVPRO Franchise Professionals can handle any size disaster. During catastrophic storms and major events, our Disaster Recovery Team can respond quickly with additional resources.

  • Flooding caused by heavy rains
  • Hurricanes and tidal surges
  • Tornadoes and wind damage
  • Ice and snowstorms
  • Wild fires

Training, Training and More Training

9/19/2018 (Permalink)

Since 1967, SERVPRO Industries, Inc., has been redefining the mitigation and restoration industries. In addition to training at the regional level, SERVPRO developed the National Training Center in 1992 to teach restoration and mitigation skills to Franchise Owners and insurance industry employees.

Employee Certification Training

A self paced program designed for the franchise employee. Certification is awarded after successful completion of course materials and an examination. Modules include:

  • Crew Training
  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning

New Franchise Training

A 15 day in-house, hands-on training program at our corporate training facility. Designed primarily for new franchise owners but also a valuable course for franchise employees. The program covers all aspects of:

  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning
  • Mold Mitigation


A web based program designed to be an ongoing self-paced training program. Video presentations and support materials are followed by a knowledge test at the end of each module.

IICRC Training Program

SERVPRO is an approved IICRC Training School that offers year-around classes in the following categories:

  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet Cleaning
  • Upholstery Cleaning
  • Applied Structural Drying 
    (in our purpose-built ASD facility)

Continuing Education

SERVPRO offers both credit and noncredit courses for insurance agents, insurance adjusters, real estate professionals and franchise staff. These programs are designed to improve knowledge of emergency mitigation. Courses include:

  • Water Damage Restoration
  • Fire Damage Restoration
  • Understanding Mold in the Restoration Industry
  • Restorative Drying for Loss Control
  • Mitigation Awareness Response Seminar
    (non-credit course)

Hurricane Florence

9/13/2018 (Permalink)

-( Florence's outer bands began lashing coastal North Carolina on Thursday, officials and forecasters begged residents in the massive storm's path to treat the hurricane seriously — and not be deceived by it being downgraded to a Category 2.

Here's the latest on Hurricane Florence:

  • The Category 2 storm could bring peak wind gusts at over 100 mph and substantial storm surges of up to 13 feet.
  • The storm could make landfall early Friday in North Carolina. Its size is larger than North and South Carolina combined.
  • The airport in Charleston, South Carolina, will be closed through at least Saturday, and nearly 1,000 flights in the region have been canceled through Friday.

"Do not pay attention to the category. That's not the important thing," said NBC News' meteorologist Al Roker. "The storm surge — this is the most dangerous part of the storm."

Florence, which as of 11 a.m. ET was about 145 miles east-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, with maximum sustained winds of 105 mph, was at one point a Category 4 storm before it weakened to a Category 3 Wednesday afternoon and then weakened again to a Category 2 as of 11 p.m. Wednesday.

It was moving northwest at 10 mph, the National Hurricane Center said.

The agency warned "life-threatening storm surge and rainfall" were expected — and officials urged anyone in areas under evacuation orders to get out as quickly as they could.

"Just because the wind speeds came down, the intensity came down to a Category 2, please do not let your guard down," said Federal Emergency Management Agency administrator Brock Long at a press conference Thursday morning. "The storm surge forecast with this storm has not changed."

Landfall is expected early Friday in coastal North Carolina, but rain is forecast to last for the next several days.

"The forecasters are basically indicating feet of rain, not inches, in portions of the Carolinas and into Virginia," Long said, warning that inland flooding could be deadly.

"The infrastructure is going to break," he added. "The power is going to go out. It could go out for a number of days, it could go out for weeks. It's very hard to say at this point."

In total, more than 10 million people face dangerous or life-threatening conditions from Florence, officials said. And about 1.7 million people in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia have been told to evacuate.

The National Hurricane Center said Florence could bring life-threatening storm surge and rain to parts of the Carolinas and Mid-Atlantic states.

Two potentially catastrophic storm surges are forecast: one just before midnight Thursday and another midday Friday.

Hurricane and storm surge warnings were in effect for South Santee River, South Carolina, to Duck, North Carolina, and Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds. A hurricane watch was in effect for Edisto Beach, South Carolina, to South Santee River, South Carolina, and a storm surge watch was in effect for Edisto Beach, South Carolina, to South Santee River and north of Duck, North Carolina, to the North Carolina-Virginia border.

The biggest area of concern was Cape Fear to Cape Lookout, North Carolina, which could see storm surges of 9 to 13 feet.

According to the Red Cross, more than 1,600 people spent Tuesday night in 36 shelters across the Carolinas, and dozens of more shelters were opening Wednesday. South Carolina's government said Wednesday that it had over 1,800 people in shelters in its state.

Some in the storm's path wrestled with whether to leave. In Wilmington, a city of about 119,000 on North Carolina's coast that is along the forecast track, staff at the 100-bed Trinity Grove skilled nursing facility chose not to evacuate their residents after deciding that the risk of moving would be greater than staying.

State and federal agencies said they were prepared for the worst. On Thursday, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said he had been in contact with President Donald Trump and said the president had offered "whatever we need" to get through the storm.

Gen. Gregory Lusk, the adjutant general of the North Carolina National Guard, said 6,400 guardsmen were on active duty between North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.

"We are in constant contact and coordination with each other," Lusk said, "because in an event such as this, state boundaries don't matter when American lives are at risk."

Tropical Storm Gordon

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Tropical Storm Gordon Storm Path

Tropical Storm Gordon slowed down slightly early Tuesday morning (Sept. 4) as it moved through the Gulf of Mexico toward the coasts of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. It's expected to make landfall Tuesday night as a hurricane near the Louisiana-Mississippi state line. Here's the track as of 7 a.m. Tuesday.

If you have storm damage, call us at 228-465-4450 and let our certified crew member handle you clean up. We are here 24 hours a day 7 days a week to help you.

Stay tuned to the news and get prepared early for this storm.