Blog – Document Recovery, Water and Storm Damage

Burst pipes flood historic Tacoma buildings

Only days after a burst pipe flooded the Old City Hall building in Tacoma, WA with over 30,000 gallons of water, a neighboring historic downtown building on Pacific Avenue suffered the same fate. The building is home to United Way of Pierce County offices.

The sprinkler system pipe burst on Thanksgiving night in the 120-year-old building’s fourth floor. While most of the damage was contained to the fourth floor, there was also water damage to the electrical panels of the elevators and the perimeter sheetrock. As soon as the disaster was discovered, professionals were called in to remediate the water damage. They first eliminated the standing water in the building, removed water-damaged materials such as wet documents and set up dehumidifiers and large fans. As a final touch, the flood remediation company forced hot air through the building to help it fully dry.

To prevent mold damage, the United Way offices moved quickly to dry the flood damaged building and its content. “The News Tribune” reports, “…Emergency mitigation goes a long way toward preventing mold… ‘The biggest concern always is mold…Twenty-four to 48 hours is usually the window of time that you need to have emergency mitigation. After that is when you have the potential for mold.’”

During the flood cleanup, United Way employees worked from a remote location. Fortunately, thanks to emergency disaster planning, none of the nonprofit’s services were disrupted.

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