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Water damage has various forms and the hazards it poses are not always comparable to the amount of water that penetrates your property. This is why it’s important to distinguish between three categories of water damage depending on its source and potential harm.   

Category 1 water damage is clean water originating from tub or sink overflows, burst pipes, melting snow or leaking roofs. Despite the damage to the property, category one water damage poses the least hazard to humans.

Category 2 water damage or gray water may come from sources like a dishwasher, refrigerator or a washing machine. This water is contaminated with chemicals and can cause illnesses when consumed.

Category 3 water damage or black water is the most dangerous of all categories; it is contaminated with harmful bacteria, fungi, pesticides, and toxic chemicals. It comes with sewage, rivers’ flood water and groundwater. Also, any water left standing for an extended period and not removed within 24-48 hours can become contaminated.

Why is Category 3 Water Damage Dangerous?

Pathogens present in category three water cause severe diseases including Rotavirus, Norovirus, Tetanus,  Hepatitis A, Encephalitis, and Thyroid Fever. This poses a significant risk both to the inhabitants of the affected home and specialists engaged in the water damage cleanup.

Moreover, hazardous contamination quickly spreads around the affected home soaking deep in carpets, furnishings, and drywall. Thus, simple water removal or necessary water damage cleanup is not enough to mitigate risks. If the category three water damage is not tackled in a due manner including both cleaning and disinfection, secondary damage may follow. The latter takes place when the contaminated flood water evaporates affecting the air quality, and mold grows.     

possessions carried outside in a restoration process

What to Do When Your Home is Affected

Contact with black water, as well as insufficient water damage cleanup without proper disinfection will have adverse consequences for your health. Thus, you should refer to a professional water damage restoration company to take care of your home. When looking for a local water damage restoration company that might help, make sure they have relevant certifications and the necessary equipment such as commercial grade air movers and dehumidifiers.

Considering the speed, with which the flood water bacteria spreads, it is essential to call the cleanup specialists right away, even if it’s holidays or weekends. At the same time, filing a claim to an insurance agent can wait. After all, an insurance provider is interested in minimizing the adverse consequences of water damage, which only restoration company specialists can do. While waiting for the specialists to arrive, you might move the furniture or other belongings away from water and ensure home ventilation.

To avoid further contact with category three water, which is not only dangerous but also extremely unpleasant, you should better stay in the home of your friends or relatives until specialists complete the cleaning and disinfection. Be ready to part with some of your belongings, as it is recommended that carpets and drywall should be torn out and replaced. Water damage, like any other property damage, is never a pleasant experience. What need now is to make sure it remains in the past.

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