Urban Valet Blog

Preparing for the Unexpected

Posted: December 1, 2019

Grandmother & granddaughter cooking holiday meal together

When most people think of a dry cleaners, they think clothes. And not just any clothes, but “fancy” clothes – Silks, wools, suits, gowns etc. Progressive cleaners like Urban Valet have evolved with changing customer needs and have become experts in cleaning just about anything you might find inside (and most often outside) of your home. 

It may seem strange for a cleaners to write an article about emergency preparedness.  But behind the scenes, Urban Valet has a whole separate division that helps families after a disaster strikes.  Most of our everyday customers have no idea – but we have been a leader in the clothing restoration industry for over 15 years!  When fire, water, smoke or mold affects your textiles such as clothing, drapes, bedding and more, our team is there to help!

So – back to the article.  Why share tips now?  This time of year is statistically a busy season for home fires.  Between cold weather and heating mistakes and holiday meal prep, fires can strike at any time. Through our years working with families and insurance companies, we have learned many helpful tips.

Careful when Cooking

Cooking is the #1 cause of house fires and fire-related injuries. The holiday season is prime time for these cooking-related fire situations. Here are a few cooking tips:

  • Stay by the stove when the burner is on. Leaving the range on while you leave the kitchen can be the perfect time for a fire to spark.
  • Watch the heat level – low and slow is best! If you see oil begin to ripple or smoke forming, turn the burner off immediately.
  • Turn pot handles towards the back of the stove to prevent bumps, burns or little hands pulling down pots.
  • Keep a pan lid or sheet pan close to cover a fire if it happens and extinguish it. 

Heating Safely

Heating is the 2nd leading cause of house fires after cooking. 

  • Keep anything flammable at least 3 feet away from fireplaces or wood stoves.
  • Have your chimney inspected and cleaned each year.
  • Put space heaters on a hard, flat surface and ensure they have automatic shut off if they tip over.
  • Turn space heaters off when leaving the room, or leaving the house.

Holiday Decor

Half of holiday decoration fires happen because the décor is too close to a heat source. Almost 60% of holiday fires are started by candles. The moral? Use common sense when decorating!

  • Keep your Christmas tree well watered. A dry tree can catch on fire easily.
  • Inspect holiday lights before using. Throw away any with frayed wires.
  • If you use candles, make sure they are in appropriate holders that protect the open flame.

No one ever expects a fire in their home. By using these simple tips above, we hope to help you prevent such an event.  If however you or someone you know has a fire, water, smoke or mold issue in their home, please give our textile restoration team a call.  We may be able to help, or at least refer local companies we trust to help you restore your home.

Happy Holidays from all of us at NARD by Urban Valet Textile Restoration.

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