Recent Community Posts

SERVPRO of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks Gives to Local Women's Shelter

3/15/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks believes that "it Takes a Village".

SERVPRO of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks and several of its employees collected women and children's clothing to give to a local women's shelter.

Our Textile restoration department cleaned the collected items, categorized, and boxed the items to deliver the boxes to the shelter. 

Due to the nature of necessary security and non-disclosure of the facility, we were not able to take photographs, but the director was thrilled and very appreciative for our continued support. 

Developing Your Emergency Plan & Your Family/Household Living Needs

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Practice your Family Emergency Plan

While planning your emergency plan, you should consider specific needs of those family/household members.  You can tailor it and your supplies to those specific daily living needs and responsibilities. 

Discuss these specifics with each other and determine how you can assist each other with communication, taking care of the children, the business, the pets, and even specific needs like the operation of durable medical equipment. 

It is recommended to create your own personal network for specific areas where you will need help.  These factors are important to remember when developing your plan.

  • Different ages of members within your household
  • Dietary needs
  • Medical needs that include prescriptions & equipment
  • Responsibilities for assisting others
  • Disabilities or access and functional needs that include devices & equipment
  • Locations frequented
  • Languages spoken
  • Cultural and religious considerations
  • Pets or service animals
  • Households and school aged children

Download and fill out an Emergency Family Plan or use it as a guide to create your own.  Practice your plan with your family/household.

Next Blog:  Get Your Kids On Your Team

Get Your Kids On Your Team!

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Get Your Kids On Your Team!

Get Your Kids On Your Team!

Young children and teens need to be part of the emergency planning process for their own safety and sense of empowerment.  The burden of preparing for emergencies should not fall upon your shoulders alone.

Here are team building suggestions:

Play these games with your kids to test your know-how in a wide range of emergencies and they will help teach how to build the perfect emergency kit in a fun way!

Knowing how to respond to your child during or after a disaster is important.  Learn more about  helping children cope during and after a disaster.

Hurricane Safety During and After

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Hurricane Safety During and After

Plan Ahead. . . Survive During and After

We know that hurricanes are massive storm systems that threaten us with powerful winds, heavy rainfall, storm surges, coastal and inland flooding, rip currents, tornadoes and even landslides.  Hurricanes are the most active in September.  You know what to do to plan ahead, and now let’s discuss how to SURVIVE DURING  the hurricane.

  • If you have been told to evacuate, do so immediately and do not drive around barricades.
  • If sheltering during high winds, go to a FEMA safe room, or an ICC 500 storm shelter, or a small, interior windowless room or hallway on the lowest floor that is not subject to flooding.
  • If you are trapped in a building by flooding, go to the highest level of the building. Do not climb into a closed attic, as you may become trapped by rising flood water.
  • Listen for current emergency information and instructions.
  • Use a generator or other gasoline powered machines outdoors only and away from windows.
  • Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn around. Don’t Drown!  Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • Stay off of bridges over fast moving water.

Be safe AFTER

  • Listen to authorities for information and special instructions.
  • Be careful during clean-up. Wear protective clothing and work with someone else.
  • Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. If it is safe to do so, turn off electricity at the main breaker or fuse box to prevent electric shock.
  • Avoid wading in flood water, which can contain dangerous debris. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water.
  • Save phone calls for emergencies. Phone systems are often down or busy after a disaster. Use text messages or social media to communicate with family and friends.
  • Document any property damage with photographs. Contact your insurance company for assistance.

When a Hurricane is 18-6 Hours from Arriving

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

When a Hurricane is 18-6 Hours from Arriving

When a Hurricane is 18-6 Hours from Arriving

We know that hurricanes are massive storm systems that threaten us with powerful winds, heavy rainfall, storm surges, coastal and inland flooding, rip currents, tornadoes and even landslides.  Hurricanes are the most active in September.  Plan Ahead for when a hurricane is 18 – 6 hours from arriving.

  • Bring inside any loose, lightweight objects that cannot be anchored as they could become projectile in high winds.
  • Trim or remove trees that are close enough to fall on your home or building.
  • Cover your home’s windows. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection, but a second option is to board up the windows with 5/8” exterior grade or marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install.
  • Bookmark on your phone or computer your city or county website for quick access to storm updates and emergency instructions

When a hurricane is 6-18 hours from arriving

  • Turn on your TV/radio or check your city/county website every 30 minutes to get the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.
  • Charge your cell phone now so you will have a full battery in case you lose power.

When a hurricane is 6 hours from arriving

  • If you are in an area that is recommending evacuation, plan to stay at home, or where you are and notify friends and family.
  • Close storm shutters and stay away from the windows to be safe from flying glass.
  • Turn your refrigerator and/or freezer to the coldest setting and open only when necessary. Keep a thermometer in the refrigerator to be able to check the food temp when the power is restored.
  • Turn on your TV/radio or check your city/county website every 30 minutes to get the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.

Next:  Plan Ahead. . . Survive During and After

An Emergency and Communication Plan for North Carolina Residents

9/5/2018 (Permalink)

Make a Plan Elizabeth City/Outer Banks

Elizabeth City/Outer Banks start with an emergency plan today, a communication plan.   You and your family may not be together if a disaster strikes your area.  You will need to know how you will contact one another and to reconnect if you are separated.  Establish a family meeting place that is easy to find and familiar.  advises ways to put your emergency plan in action today. 

Elizabeth City has a Code Red alert system in place to reach you during an emergency situation. Read more.  

The ReadyNC mobile app alerts people living in or visiting North Carolina.

First, schedule a time to meet with your family, friends, or household members to discuss these questions.

  1. Am I set up to receive emergency alerts and warnings.
  2. What is my shelter plan? Taking appropriate shelter is critical in times of disaster.
  3. What is my evacuation route? Plan how you will leave and where you will go if you are advised to evacuate.
  4. How will our family/household communicate? Download the Family Emergency Plan

Next blog:  Your Emergency Plan and Your Family Daily Living Needs and Responsibilities

Read more about a Elizabeth City/Outer Banks Business Emergency Plan.

Extreme Heat Safety Precautions

8/8/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Elizabeth City/Outer Banks

As summer approaches it is time to consider safety precautions for extreme heat. Heat affects all people, but is particularly dangerous for the sick, elderly and young.

According to the EPA, "the sun can heat dry, exposed urban surfaces, such as roofs and pavement, to temperatures 50-90° F hotter than the air, while shaded or moist surfaces often in more rural settings remain close to air temperatures." 

Whether you are in an urban or rural area, there are several things you can do to prepare for and prevent extreme heat from affecting you and your family. If possible stay indoors with the air conditioning. always Remember to care for your pets and bring them indoors or provide them shade and water. Be sure to keep hydrating and limit alcohol and caffeine intake. 

If you must venture outdoors, wear light-colored, and loose-fitted clothing. It is also important to wear sunscreen when outdoors, and to follow the instructions for repeat application. 

Pay attention to signs of heat exhaustion, which include: heavy sweating, weakness, cold, pale and clammy skin, nausea or vomiting, and fainting according to the Center For Disease Control And Prevention (CDC). Heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke, which is life-threatening. Signs of heat stroke are a high body temperature (103°+), rapid and strong pulse, and possible unconsciousness. If you think someone has heat stroke, call 911 immediately and move the person somewhere cool. Try to reduce the body temperature with cool, wet clothes or a bath. Do not give the person with heat stroke fluids and treat the situation as a serious medical emergency. (CDC)

If you live in a humid climate, be aware of the heat index. The heat index factors in the humidity, which can make the temperature feel 15° hotter. 

Extreme Heat Safety Tips to Prepare Your Home

  • Install window air conditioners snugly, insulate if necessary
  • Check air-conditioning ducts for proper ventilation
  • Install temporary window reflectors (for use between windows and drapes). Aluminum foil covered card board can be used to reflect heat back outside. 
  • Cover windows that receive morning or afternoon sun with drapes, shades, awnings, or louvers, to reduce the heat that enters a home by up to 80%.


Extreme Heat is a danger. For more information on preparation and prevention, visit

Hurricane Preparedness- Determine Your Risk

6/4/2018 (Permalink)

Emergency Checklist

June is the time to make weather-readiness a priority in North Carolina.  The first step in hurricane preparedness is determining your risk. 

Find out now what types of wind and water hazards could happen where you live or work, and then start preparing now for how to handle those hazards.

The coastal areas of North Carolina can be susceptible to storm surge, high winds, flooding, and tornadoes and the central portion can be susceptible to inland freshwater flooding, high winds, and tornadoes.  Even when hurricanes stay out at sea, the North Carolina coast can still be impacted by large swells and deadly rip currents.

An informed and motivated public will help to save lives and livelihoods.  Prepare and complete an emergency preparedness plan, make or update your emergency kit, and be an example, share you preparedness with others. 

Have Storm or Flood Damage?

Being Green on the Green with SERVPRO of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks

5/24/2018 (Permalink)

Green is fun with peers and insurance adjusters

SERVPRO of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks takes great pride in being a part of the community.

Local SERVPRO Franchises recently joined together in support of the Hampton Roads Claims Association and it's annual golf tournament.  

The franchises combined were the tournament's dinner sponsors for the golf tournament which took place at Red Wing Lake Golf Course in Virginia Beach. 

The non-profit organization HRCA is in the Insurance Claim Industry and actively seeks to raise money for local civic and philanthropic ventures.  

Your local SERVPRO franchises are happy to be a part of this golfing fun and to help make a difference in organizations such as Edmarc Hospice for Children, ForKids, Stop Abuse and many others.  See some of our fun at Being Green on the Green!

Vacation Rental Safety

4/2/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Elizabeth City/Outer Banks, 252-331-7889

How do you know if a vacation rental property is safe for your family?  Popular home rentals websites indicate that they are not responsible for the condition of the property.  So it's up to you to keep your family safe.

Vacation Rental Dangers and three things you should do the moment you walk in the door.

1.  Go find the water heater.  Be sure to look in the basement or a closet.

2.  Install your compact carbon monoxide, battery operated detector right outside the room between the water heater and the furnace.

2. Locate the fire extinguisher, and be familiar with how to operate it and remember where it's located.

3.  Plan a fire escape and locate all of the exits and the smoke alarms.

According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control) more than 400 people die from accidental Carbon Monoxide poisoning. #SilentKiller  Tips to make sure your rental home is safe from fire and carbon monoxide.

Home rental vacationers are also vulnerable to fires.   Before you arrive, you should ask the homeowner where the fire extinguishers are located.  You and your family should know where all of the exits are located too.

SERVPRO of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks #AlwaysHereToHelp 

Massive Recall on Popular Fire Extinguisher

11/6/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO® of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks, 252-331-7889

Will Your Fire Extinguisher Work?

There was a massive recall  at the end of last year for a fire extinguisher that is reported to be in more than 40 million homes.  The extinguishers are being recalled because they may not function properly in emergency situations.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission claims that the recall covers 134 Kidde push button and plastic-handle fire extinguishers made from 1973 through August 15 of this year.

The extinguishers can become clogged and fail to spray when needed and the nozzle has come off with such force to pose an injury hazard that includes death.    Read more at Kidde Fire Extinguisher with Plastic Handle Recall

SERVPRO® Elizabeth City/Outer Banks will take care of any size fire damage cleanup.  

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (252) 331-7889

Pet Safety In An Emergency

9/25/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO® of Elizabeth City, Outer Banks, 252-331-7889

Emergencies come in many forms:  fires, hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and violent storms.  In the event of a natural disaster or extreme weather, would you know what to do to protect your pet, to keep them safe?

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention suggests five (5) steps you can take to keep your pets safe during and after an emergency.

  1. Have a plan- what you would do if you aren't home or can't get to your pet when disaster strikes
  2. Make a kit- stock up on food and water, tap water could become contaminated
  3. In Case of Emergency- have information with you that will help find your pet in case they get lost or run away
  4. Make sure vaccinations are up to date- in case your pet needs to stay at a shelter
  5. Have a safe haven- Pets get nervous too, make sure you have their favorite toys, a leash, and a bed or cage

The CDCP gives some Other things to think about and other resources with information to help keep your pets safe in an emergency.  Remember #SERVPROOBX we are #AlwaysHereToHelp, #NatlPrep 

International Day of Peace

9/21/2017 (Permalink)


September 21 is International Day of Peace where so many around the world take part to observe and to share the message.

The International Day of Peace ("Peace Day") is observed around the world each year on 21 September.   The day was established in 1981 by the United Nations.   Peace Day provides a globally shared date for all humanity to commit to Peace above all differences and to contribute to building a Culture of Peace. This 2018 year's #peacedaycelebrates the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: "The Right to Peace- The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70." #standup4humanrights “Peace is a daily, a weekly, a monthly process, gradually changing opinions, slowly eroding old barriers, quietly building new structures.” John F. Kennedy

#DayofPeace #BeTheChange

Build this Kit. . . Be Informed. . .Get the Alerts

9/20/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO® of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks, 252-331-7889

Build the Kit. . . Be informed. . . Get the Alerts.

Being prepared for an emergency means being equipped with the proper supplies.  Your kit supplies should be easy to carry and quick to grab.

September is #NationalPreparednessMonth and it is the right time to prepare.  @AmericanRed Cross suggests, at the very least,  to have the basic supplies listed below:

  • Water: one gallon per person, per day (3-day supply for evacuation, 2 week supply for home)
  • Food; non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items(3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home).
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio 
  • Extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Medications (7-day supply) and medical items
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medial information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family and emergency contact information
  • Extra cash
  • Emergency blanket
  • Map(s) of the area

Anatomy of a first aid kit, a handy thing to have.

Sign Up for Public Safety Alerts

Should a disaster like water damage from a pipe break in your home or from a leaky toilet affect you, call SERVPRO® of Elizabeth City/Outer Banks, serving this area over 20 years and is here to help you 24/7, 365 days make it "Like it never even happened." at 252-331-7889

#SERVPROOBX #LikeItNeverEvenHappened #HereToHelp

September is National Preparedness Month in Elizabeth City

9/1/2017 (Permalink)

National Preparedness Month in Elizabeth City, Outer Banks

As a member of the National Preparedness Month Coalition to helping the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in their efforts to promote the importance of preparedness planning, SERVPRO of Elizabeth City will share with you throughout this month,  emergency preparedness information.

The recent natural disaster tragedy in Texas makes us realize just how vulnerable we all are at any time, any place to mother nature.

At SERVPRO of Elizabeth City, we believe that information is power, and helping to provide you with as much as possible, will help to keep you and your family safe when disaster strikes.

September is national preparedness month and we will share with you topics such as on how to make a plan for yourself, your family and friends, a plan to help your neighbor and community, how to practice and build out your plans, and how to get involved, to be part of something larger, ready business, ready campus, and faith based preparedness.

Thoughts and Prayers for Hurricane Harvey Victims

8/29/2017 (Permalink)

Helping those that can't help themselves

Our thoughts and prayers for hurricane Harvey victims was heart felt at SERVPRO  Elizabeth City/Outer Banks.

To see the abundance of "call to arms" service from strangers,emergency services, neighbors and even those also in harms way strengthens one's faith.

We at SERVPRO Elizabeth City/Outer Banks understands this service attitude and work hard to help change lives during a disaster.

Major storms and flooding events can overwhelm many restoration companies. On the other hand, SERVPRO Elizabeth City/Outer Banks can access resources from 1,700 Franchises across the state and country and even utilize Disaster Recovery Teams for major storms and disasters.

Thank you to all who have and will continue to help those in need.

Should a storm or major event strike, call (252) 331-7889

Watch live the solar eclipse with NASA!

8/21/2017 (Permalink)

Solar Eclipse in Elizabeth City!

"You'll go blind!"  No, it's not Ralphie's mother saying so, but the experts.

On August 21, 2017, all of North America will be treated to an eclipse of the sun. Viewers around the world will be provided a wealth of images captured before, during, and after the eclipse by 11 spacecraft, at least three NASA aircraft, more than 50 high-altitude balloons, and the astronauts aboard the International Space Station – each offering a unique vantage point for the celestial event.  Watch the solar eclipse live at Solar Eclipse 2017_NASA

Get Your Hurricane Preparedness Kits Ready

8/11/2017 (Permalink)

Be Hurricane Ready in Elizabeth City, Outer Banks

Get your hurricane preparedness kits ready Elizabeth City, Outer Banks.   According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, our region could see more than 20 tropical storms and hurricanes this season.

Gerry Bell, Ph.D., lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA's Climate Prediction Center, says that "We're now entering the peak of the season when the bulk of the storms usually form."  Typically, our Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1-November 30.

According to the release, there is a 60% chance that we will see an above-normal season with 14 to 19 tropical storms and five to nine hurricanes. Between two and five of those hurricanes are predicted to be major.

SERVPRO of Elizabeth City, Outer Banks wants to help prepare you with our Emergency Ready Plan  that will put your information and contacts at your fingertips, your phone.  Get started by UserName is, Password is Ready to view a sample Emergency profile.

Disaster Plan Checklist

Thunderstorm Safety in Elizabeth City, Outer Banks, NC

6/19/2017 (Permalink)

Are you ready North Carolina?

It is important to be prepared for thunderstorms and severe weather. 

A thunderstorm is considered severe if it has wind gusts of at least 58 miles per hour or produces hail at least 1" in diameter.

Do you know the difference between a Thunderstorm watch and a warning?  WATCH out, severe thunderstorms are possible in and near the watch North Carolina area.  Be WARNED, severe weather has been reported by spotters or indicated by radar.  The American Red Cross tells us how to prepare for thunderstorms and suggests getting trained in first aid and to put together an emergency preparedness kit.

When damage strikes, you can be ruined or You Can Be Ready. Visit Emergency Ready Plan, Username: ERP@SPECityOBX.comPassword:Ready.  

At SERVPRO® of Elizabeth City, Outer Banks, we are "Always Ready to Help".


3/1/2017 (Permalink)

And It Says Tornado Warning!




The Virginia Department of Emergency Management claims that “Nationally, the U.S. averages more than 800 tornadoes per year. Tornadoes can strike anywhere in the U.S., during any month and any time of day. Virginia has seen as few as one tornado in a year (1982) to as many as 84 tornadoes (2004), Virginia Tornado History   It can happen here. It could happen to you. Be prepared by knowing what to do when a tornado threatens”.


  • Know the lingo, the terms:
  • Tornado Watch: A tornado is possible in your area.  You should monitor weather-alert apps on your mobile devices, radios, local radio, and TV stations for information.
  • Tornado Warning: A tornado has been sighted in the area or has been indicated by National Weather Service Doppler radar.  When a warning is issued, take cover immediately.
  • You need to have a plan now of where you will go when that tornado warning is issued. This place should be kept uncluttered.
  • Storm cellars, basements offer the best protection.
  • Go to a windowless interior room, closet or hallway on the lowest floor possible.
  • If in a high rise building, you should pick a place in a hallway in the center of the building.
  • A trailer, mobile home, or vehicle does not provide good protection. Go to a sturdy building, or lie down in a ditch away from your home, and cover your head with your hands.  Mobile homes are extremely unsafe and vulnerable during tornadoes.
  • Keep an emergency supply kit in your safe location.
  • Practice a tornado drill at least once a year.


  • Go to a shopping mall, a gym or a civic center. Try to get into a restroom or an interior hallway.  If there is no time, get up against something that will deflect falling debris.  Protect your head by covering it with your arms.
  • Get out of your car or truck and try to find shelter inside a sturdy building. A ditch or culvert can provide shelter when there is no building nearby.  Lie down flat and cover your head with your hands.  You are safer in a low, flat location.  Bridges or overpasses are a no no.

The National Weather Service says that “there is no such thing as guaranteed safety inside a tornado.  Freak accidents happen; and the most violent tornadoes can level and blow away almost any house and its occupants.  Extremely violent EF5 tornadoes are very rare.  Most tornadoes are actually much weaker and can be survived.  See more Tornado Safety ideas from the NOAA.

Weather Alert Terminology

2/22/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO® Ready Plan. . . Download Yours Today

Do you know the difference between a storm warning, a storm watch, and a storm advisory?  Do you know the difference between a tropical depression and a tropical storm?   No worries because it can all be so confusing however, your SERVPRO® of Elizabeth City/OBX wants you to be READY.  

Learn more about weather teminology and our ERP (Emergency Ready Plan) Free Mobile App, not only will you know how to prepare,  you will have relief, contact numbers and names at your fingertips should a disaster occur.  Go to your APP store on your phone and search for SERVPRO® Ready Plan to download your free app today.

Your local SERVPRO® of Elizabeth City/OBX representative is ready to assist you with getting you set up with your mobile app, just give us a call.

Weather Alert Terminology


Holiday Fun With Our SERVPRO® Team

1/16/2017 (Permalink)

Santa and his Elf, Missy Burns

It's hard to believe that we are on the cusp of 2017 and preparing to leave 2016 behind.

Our SERVPRO® work family has been in the holiday spirit mode for the past couple of weeks.  While it is still work as usual, annually we like to bring our crew, managers, marketers, and office staff together to enjoy a warm, comforting breakfast every Christmas.

Last week, our Christmas breakfast thanks to Missy Burns, our Marketing Manager, included a few special guests.

SERVPRO® Elves that helped to prepare for those guests were (Josh Alewine), electronics restoration,  Donna Hamilton, Production Manager, Meg Vidal, Crew and and Santa's helper,  Kim Calantropo, yours truly. The big guy, and good sport, being Santa Claus, Jeff Caudil, new to our marketing team.  

Our SERVPRO® family even participated in a Mannequin Challenge. SERVPRO® of Elizabeth City Mannequin Challenge

Thank you all for a great 2016 and here's to a healthy, safe and prosperous 2017!

"How To" Tips to Winterize Your Home

1/16/2017 (Permalink)

Winter is here with a bang!

Here are a few tips tips for preparing you and your insured's home for winter weather. 
  1.  Keep cabinet doors open during cold spells, this  allows warm air to circulate around pipes
  2.  Keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets  especially if the pipes for faucets run  through unheated or uninsulated areas of your home
  3.  Consider shutting off outdoor faucets. Shut these  valves off and then open faucets so that they can  drain
  4.  Ensure gutters are clean & secure from leaves and  debris. This can cause damming, effecting gutters  which could lead to roof problems & water damage
  5.  Proper maintenance of your furnace can help reduce  the risk of puff-backs (a puff-back is a messy furnace  malfunction that occurs when an oil burner backfires  sending soot  throughout your home )
Good luck to everyone & be careful if you have to travel.

Energy Efficient Apps For Your Smartphone

1/12/2017 (Permalink)

It's Easier To Be Green!

Let's face it, our phones, tablets, computers and even our TV's have become our assistants, aka APPS.

There’s a slew of cool applications that can help track and manage home energy use, and even connect to a smart thermostat, so you can start conserving energy right away!

Need more ways to save Energy?

Looking for other ways to avoid a large energy bill this summer?

Check out a guide to reducing summer electric bills and read more at. . . The 7 Best Energy Efficiency Apps for Your Smartphone and a Greener Lifestyle