As Hurricane Sandy passes, people may have been given the treat of a flooded basement thanks to ''Frankenstorm.''
If your basement has flooded, there are safety measures and precautions people need to know. The first thing is not to not enter the basement if there is still electricity and it hasn't been shut off.
''If the basement is flooded and water comes over any outlets, make sure the power is off before entering the basement,'' said Craig Lindquist, Viking Professional Restoration Systems owner. ''If you can't shut it off, call an electrician to do it.''
If a basement has been flooded, the second biggest concern for most homeowners is if it is covered by their insurance. Britt Bridges, Disaster Response Restoration owner, said homeowners should call their insurance agent to see if they have overflow protection in their policy.
''When the October snow storm hit in 2006, we saw homes with four to five feet of water in their basement,'' he said. ''Most of these people didn't have overflow insurance on their homeowner policy, so they weren't covered. People need to consult with their agent to see if they have that.''
Ivy Higginbotham, Servicemaster By Higgingbotham's owner, said if water is going to enter a basement, there is little to do to stop it.
''If you don't normally get water, now is the time you will if it hits your house just right,'' she said. ''The best thing to do is soak up the water. You can do that by rolling up towels. Also, using a Shop-Vac, that is the best thing to use. Don't use a home vacuum. A Shop-Vac is the way to go. If you have carpet, disengage it by pulling it back from where the water is coming in. Pick up throw rugs, anything on the floor like furniture, clothing or cushions and move them to higher and dryer ground.''
Jay Noel, Absolute Abatement and Restoration co-owner, said if a basement floods, call a restoration company to, not only try and save water damaged items, but to ensure there is no mold growing in the basement.
''If water is not properly extracted or removed, people can have an enormous mold problem down the road. It can cause a lot of secondary damage if not taken care of properly,'' he said.
To prevent possible basement flooding, Lindquist advised people to check their roof's drainage system to make sure it is working properly.
''Make sure your gutters aren't clogged so water runs off the roof and away from the building,'' he said. ''Make sure your downspouts are getting water off the roof and away from the building.''
Bridges said make sure your sump pump is in working order and you have power to make it run.
''Make sure you have battery backup in case of an electrical failure,'' he said. ''When electricity is out and sump pumps are not working, the next thing you know you have four feet of water in the basement.''