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Cleaning Up Floodwater: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Whether you consult a scientific publication or just your common sense, you will be aware of how important water is to human life. It is essential for crops and creatures to thrive; 70% of the earth’s surface is covered in it, and up to 60% of the human body is composed of water.
 
Despite being so fundamental to life though, water is often taken for granted by those living in contemporary UK society. We have running water, indoor plumbing and – quite literally – clean water on tap.
 
Of course, we see the difficulties faced by those in regions facing water shortages or natural disasters, where water is either difficult to come by or overabundant and damaging. But this kind of situation can seem more than a world away. We are far more accustomed to crystal clear tap water, long hot showers and a steady supply of clean, safe water.
 
It is our heavy reliance, and even complacence, when it comes to water that makes it all the more overwhelming when disaster strikes.
 
We may not face the same daily challenges as those in water shortage regions, and we may not be under constant threat from flooding or a tsunami, and the like. We do, however, have a very wet climate and the ideal circumstances for regular flooding; be it from weather conditions or faulty plumbing, courtesy of our running water.
 
When homes and businesses flood as a result of plumbing or weather related issues, most people are at a loss of what to do. We are so used to clean, safe and controlled water that the unexpected arrival of excess and dirty water poses a real problem.
 
In fact, this is a particular problem in the event of a flooded building, where even initially clean water can remain stagnant for days, quickly becoming an unsanitary risk to health. To avoid this threat, you need to ensure you enlist the services of a professional flood restoration company who will be able to get rid of unclean water efficiently.
 
Why do we need to get rid of clean flood water in such a hurry though? After all, if it is clean, it’s not dangerous. Well, that’s not entirely accurate.
 
Standing floodwater is a risk to people’s health…
 

Infectious diseases like typhoid fever, hepatitis and various diarrheal viruses lurk and breed in standing or stagnant water. Flooding can also attract or lead to the displacement of wildlife like rats, mice and various insects which can all carry and transmit diseases to humans. Of course, floodwater can also infect open wounds and conceal dangerous obstacles that can cause injury; drowning is always a risk too.
 
Standing water can damage a structure’s integrity…

 
It is not just the initial flood that causes damage, but also the standing water that causes gradual damage or worsens existing damage to the structure and its contents. Water can compromise the integrity of the building’s walls, timber framing, flooring, ceilings and even foundations. This is a risk, especially in more severe cases where buildings can become so degraded they collapse. As well as the damage caused to physical materials sitting in water, the risk of mould growth is increased with every passing hour floodwaters are left to fester in a property. Mould is a problem because it is not only harmful to buildings, but also to people’s health.
 
Now, there are many arguments for clearing away floodwater promptly. However, the two discussed in this post are the main reasons homes and businesses need to be just as wary of clean floodwater as they are of dirty floodwater.
 
So to save your property and its contents, and protect the health and safety of those using your building, be sure to contact Relkogroup in the event of a flood.