Recent Fire Damage Posts

Space Heater Fires

2/9/2020 (Permalink)

sticker on electric heater with UL approval and warnings When a fire is started by a space heater, our team at SERVPRO is Here to Help.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, there are more than 25,000 residential fires every year associated with the use of space heaters, resulting in more than 300 deaths. How can you keep you and your loved ones safe during the colder months?

Safety Guidelines

  • Buy only heaters the have been safety tested and UL approved.
  • Purchase a heater with a tip-over safety switch.
  • Plug directly into the wall outlet.
  • If an extension cord is essential, use the shortest possible heavy-duty cord of 14-gauge wire or larger (Always check and follow any manufacturer’s instructions).
  • Keep away from flammable objects (3-foot rule).
  • Never leave a space heather unattended.

Space heaters can be beneficial by warming up a room quickly, but they can create a disaster. If you experience a fire due to a space heater, call SERVPRO. We are Here to Help and ready to get your home back to preloss condition.

Cooking Safety to Prevent Kitchen Fire

12/9/2019 (Permalink)

Woman pulling out apple pie from oven with steam SERVPRO of Marshall, Sedalia and Columbia is here to help in case the apple pie leaves you with a fire instead of a full belly.

The holiday season is the time of the year to gather with family and friends. Also, let’s not forget the delicious meals—yum! Holiday meals can bring our bellies cheer with Aunt Mary’s homemade noodles, grandpa’s famous corn casserole or any favorite holiday dish. However, cooking is the main cause of home fires and injuries, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Review these cooking safety tips to help ensure you have a safe holiday cooking experience.

  • NEVER leave cooking food unattended. Turn off the stove, even if you think you will be right back in the kitchen.
  • Check the food regularly while cooking and use a timer.
  • Keep small children away from the cooking area.
  • Keep flammables (pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels and bags) away from the stove, oven, or other appliances that generate heat in the kitchen.
  • Prevent grease build-up by cleaning cooking surfaces regularly.
  • Purchase and keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen.
  • Install smoke alarms in your home.

If the unthinkable happens and a fire strikes your home this holiday season, contact your local heroes at SERVPRO of Marshall, Sedalia and Columbia. We wish you a safe and happy holiday season.

Plan Your Fire Escape Route

9/30/2019 (Permalink)

Fire damaged house Having a fire escape plan on your home, can keep your family safe.

Fire Prevention Week is October 6th-12th. The theme for 2019 is “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practice Your Escape!” How can you and your family be prepared for a fire?

Plan Your Escape Route

Draw a layout of your home and mark two exits for each room leading to outside. The exits can be a door or a window.

Test Your Smoke Alarms

There should be a smoke alarm located on each level of your home, in each bedroom, and near all sleeping areas.

Choose an Outside Meeting Place

Choose a meeting place for everyone to meet outside of your home. This could be in your front yard, backyard, or by a tree. Make sure everyone is aware of the spot and that it is far enough away from danger.  Don’t forget to dial 911 once you are outside.

Practice Home Fire Drill

Practice makes perfect! Be sure to go run the drill at least twice a year.

For more information on how to be prepared for a fire, visit If your family suffers from a fire damage contact the professionals at SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia and Columbia. We are Here to Help®!

How to Use a Fire Extinguisher

7/23/2019 (Permalink)

Can you PASS?

Imagine, a fire has just started in your home or business. It is contained, oxygen has not been depleted, and the room temperature has only slightly increased. Do you know how to use a fire extinguisher? Your adrenaline may be pumping when a fire occurs, so knowing how to operate one before is best.

Using an acronym, like PASS, will help in memorizing how to properly operate a fire extinguisher.

  • PULL the pin.
  • AIM low, pointing the nozzle at the base of the fire.
  • SQUEEZE the handle.
  • SWEEP from side to side at the base.

Remember, safety is always important. Evacuate immediately, if…

  • The fire is not contained, smoke is feeling the room, and the temperature is hot.
  • You have the slightest doubt of your ability to fight a fire.
  • The extinguisher is empty and the fire is not out.

SERVPRO of Marshall, Sedalia and Columbia have the specialized fire restoration training needed to restore your home or business to pre-fire condition.

*Source: OSHA

Safe Grilling in Marshall, Sedalia and Columbia

5/13/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Marshall, Sedalia and Columbia is a leader in the fire and water cleanup and restoration.

Grilling season is here! We will now find our neighbors outside soaking up the sun and enjoying food from the grill. Grilling is one of the most popular ways to cook food. Whether you like the flavor of a charcoal grill or the convenience and control of a gas grill, outdoor grilling can be a fire hazard.

Preparing to Cook

  • Use grills outside only
  • Keep your grill clean
  • If using a starter fluid, only use charcoal starter fluid (Charcoal grill)
  • Check gas tank hose for leaks before using it for the first time of the year (Gas grill)

While Cooking

  • Place them away from
    • Home
    • Deck
    • Low hanging branches
    • Children and pets
  • Never leave your grill unattended

After Cooking

  • Cool coals completely before disposing in a metal container (Charcoal grill)
  • Do not place grill against structure

SERVPRO of Marshall, Sedalia and Columbia hope you use these tips to have a safe summer filled with gourmet grilling. If you are grilling a delicious meal, don’t hesitate to call. Happy grilling!

Smoke Alarm Safety in Marshall, Sedalia, & Columbia

3/4/2019 (Permalink)

Do you have enough smoke alarms in your home?

Smoke alarms save lives. This statement is only true, if they are properly installed and maintained. According to Missouri Department of Public Safety, about 540 children (14 and under) die each year from home fires and 80 percent of those children did not have working smoke alarms in the home. What can you do keep your family safe?


  • Every Bedroom
  • Every level
  • Don’t forget basement and attic

Test & Replace

  • Monthly by pressing the test button
  • Replace batteries every year (daylight saving time)
  • Replace unit every 10 years

Additional Tips

  • Fire escape plan with two exits
  • Practice fire drill
  • Interconnect all smoke alarms throughout the home

When fire and water damage take control of your life and home, SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia will help you take it back. We are here to help our neighbors.

Christmas Tree Disposal in Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia can help with your Christmas tree fire.

Christmas trees are a beautiful sight and many love to see them glowing with lights. However, no one wants to see one glowing because of a fire. It is very important to dispose of the tree once Christmas is over or the tree has dried out.

In many areas, Christmas trees are collected curbside during the first couple of weeks in January.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, half of the Christmas tree fires are caused by electrical problems or a heat source being too close. When Christmas tree fires do occur, they tend to be more serious fires.

If you experience a fire in your home, call the professionals at SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia. We are here to help you with your fire damage in your home. SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia hopes you can wrap up the holidays safely.

What to Do Until Help Arrives After a Fire in Marshall, Sedalia, & Columbia

10/15/2018 (Permalink)

Unsure what to do after a fire in your home or business? Call SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia.

If your home or business suffers a fire, you may be at loss on what steps to take next. The following tips may help reduce damage and increase your chances of a successful restoration.


  • Limit movement in the property. It helps prevent soot particles from becoming embedded into your carpet and upholstery.
  • Keep hands clean. It could further soil upholstery, walls, woodwork, etc.
  • Cover upholstery, rugs, and carpet traffic areas by placing dry, colorfast towels or old linens on them.
  • If electricity is off, empty refrigerator/freezer. Clean completely and prop open doors to help prevent odors.
  • Change HVAC filters; leave system off until a trained professional can check them.
  • Cover air registers with cheesecloth. Tape double layers to prevent soot particles from getting in or out of the HVAC system.
  • If heat is off during winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures.

When you experience a fire damage make sure to call the professionals at SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia. We are here to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

Firework Safety in Marshall, Sedalia, & Columbia

6/28/2018 (Permalink)

Have a safe 4th of July!

Firework season is among us! They are often used for special events and holidays—most commonly 4th of July. Fireworks can fill the sky with their beauty and create oohs and aahs from spectators, but they cause thousands of burns and eye injuries each year.

What you can do have a safe 4th of July…

  • Keep a close on children and pets when fireworks are being used.
  • Do not operate fireworks under the influence of alcohol.
  • Always have a bucket of water or fire extinguisher nearby.
  • Dispose of used fireworks by wetting and placing them in a metal trash can away from any building.

SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia wants you to have a safe 4th of July. If your home or business suffers fire or smoke damage, contact SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

Heating Safety Tips

2/1/2018 (Permalink)

Did your heating equipment cause a fire in your home or business? SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia.

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), half of home heating related fires occur in December, January, and February. Whether you are using the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable heater to keep you warm this winter, take these precautions to prevent a fire in your home or business.

Safety for Heating Equipment

  • Keep heating equipment three feet from children, pets, and anything that could burn.
  • Do not heat your home with your oven.
  • Have a qualified professional install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Heating equipment and chimneys should be cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
  • Always turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
  • Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room.
  • Test smoke alarms at least once a month.

If your heating equipment causes a fire in your home or business, call SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia. We understand how devastating a fire loss can be and how it can make your home or business unlivable or unsafe.

Please refer to our Fire Damage Tips - Until Help Arrives Guide and follow these tips to protect yourself and your property.

Holiday Safety Tips for Marshall, Sedalia, & Columbia

12/8/2017 (Permalink)

According to National Fire Protection Agency, Christmas tree fires are not common, but when they do occur, they are more likely to be serious.

The holiday season is here and we are able to enjoy time with our family and friends. Decorations bring the holidays to light. Keep your holidays merry and bright with these tips to help prevent damage to your home when choosing, placing, and decorating the Christmas Tree. 

Christmas Tree Safety

Tree Selection

· Choose a tree with fresh, green needles

· Make sure the tree needles to not fall off when touched

Tree Placement

· Trim 2” from the base of the trunk, then place in tree stand

· Always place the tree at least 3 feet away from any heat source, including fireplaces, radiators, candles, heat vents, or lights.

· Do not block an exit with the tree

· Add water to the tree stand and water daily.

Tree Lighting

· Use lights that are listed by a qualified testing laboratory.

· String of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections need to be replaced.

· Read manufacter’s instructions for number of light strands to connect.

· Do not use lit candles to decorate tree.

· Always turn off Christmas tree lights before going to bed or leaving home.

Tree Disposal

· Remove tree from home/business when it is dry.

· Do not place dry tree in home, garage, or placed up against your home outside.

· Find a local community recycling program to dispose of tree.

According to the National Fire Protection Association (, these Christmas Tree safety tips can reduce the chances of a fire ruining your holidays.

Please remember SERVPRO of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia is here to help you, if you find yourself faced with a holiday fire damage. We are available 24/7/365.

Deep Fried Turkey Safety for Marshall, Sedalia, & Columbia

11/10/2017 (Permalink)

Deep frying the turkey this year? Sounds delicious! Be careful this holiday season.

It is that time of the year again when family and friends come together for a feast. The highlighted dish for Thanksgiving is centered on the turkey. There are several ways to cook a turkey, but a favorite among some is deep fried. 

If you plan on deep frying a turkey this year, please keep the following tips in mind. SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia would like everyone to have a safe holiday with their family and friends.

  • Thaw and Dry turkey completely before cooking.
    • Thaw the turkey in the refrigerator approximately 24 hours for every 5 pounds, according to The National Turkey Federation.
    • Ice or water that mixes can cause flare-ups
  • Fryer Setup
    • Use fryer outdoors and away from decks, garages, home, and other structures.
    • Keep children and pets away from fryer
    • Use on a flat surface to avoid accidental tipping
    • Tank and burner should be 2 feet apart
  • Measure the Oil
    • Avoid overfilling by reading the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Be Prepared
    • Use oven mitts to protect hands and/or arms
    • Safety goggles to protect eyes
    • Have a grease-rated fire extinguisher nearby and ready
  • Finishing Act
    • Remove pot from burner and place on level surface
    • Allow oil to cool overnight before disposing

Most importantly NEVER leave fryers unattended. Please be careful this holiday season and share these tips with your friends and family that enjoy fried turkey.

If you do become a victim of a deep-fryer fire, SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia is here to help. We are available 24/7/365 days a year. View our fire damage emergency tips to help minimize the damage to your home.

October is Fire Prevention Month – Every Second Counts

10/2/2017 (Permalink)

Developing and practicing a fire escape plan can increase your chance of survival in the event of a fire. Photo provided by

Every second counts during a fire. In just a matter of moments, a small flame can turn into a major fire. Be prepared and have a fire escape plan in place, to increase your chance of survival. The best way to be prepared is having a fire escape plan and working smoke detectors in place.

The National Fire Protection Association designates one week in October to focus on fire prevention. This year, it begins on Sunday, October 8th and ends on Saturday, October 14th. Their theme this year is “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!”

Fire Escape Planning Tips:

  • Draw map of your home
  • Consider escape ladders for sleeping areas on upper levels
  • Choose an outside meeting place
  • Teach children how to escape on their own
  • Practice your fire escape plan during the day and at night

SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia wants you to stay safe. If your home or business suffers fire or smoke damage, contact SERVPRO® of Marshall, Sedalia, and Columbia to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

*Tips provided by National Fire Protection Association,