The Camp Fire is now the deadliest in California history, and as of Monday morning, Nov. 19, officials believe the fire isn't even half done burning yet. So far, it has torched an area the size of Chicago. As of this morning, 77 people are dead, hundreds more are missing, and more than 10,500 homes have been destroyed. That doesn't take into account the tends of thousands, or perhaps even millions of homes, affected by the smoke odor. Many rental equipment companies are seeing a burst of calls for equipment from companies responding to the fires, especially when it comes to odor removal.
When it comes to large events like these wildfires, choosing to rent equipment over purchasing it can be a wise choice. Here's why:
- Renting is generally easier.
- You can include the rental cost in your Xactimate estimates, and get reimbursed.
- No maintenance required on the potentially hundreds of machines you'll need.
- The rental company can often bring the equipment to you, removing the logistics of transportation.
Having a good, ongoing relationship with a rental company in your region, like your local Sunbelt rep, means when disaster strikes, one proactive call to your rep and you'll have the equipment you need on your doorstep. However, it is key to remember time is of the essence in situations like the California wildfires, and there is only so much equipment to go around. Several companies are already out of equipment, and scrambling to get more in stock because many companies were proactive and ordering or renting hundreds of machines at the onset of the fires. The sooner you call your rep and get your rental equipment reserved, the better!
Also, here is a quick recap of some tips for homeowners and business owners if your area. If you don't have some blog posts or social media posts dedicated to tips for your clients, it would be a good idea to get those posted soon if you can. Even reminders about how to properly run their HVAC system can save a lot of work and problems in the long run. Here are some other easy tips to share:
- Don't mow the lawn or allow kids to play outdoors when the air quality is compromised by wildfire smoke, even if that smoke is in the distance.
- Be aware of your area's Air Quality Index. Ratings of 51 and below are good. 51 to 100 is a moderate risk, while anything over 100 is unhealthy. If the Air Quality Index reaches 301+ it's hazardous.
- If your local authorities recommend staying indoors, stay indoors.
- Keep windows and fire place dampers closed and window air conditioning units on re-circulating mode.
- If told to evacuate, don't hesitate. Grab a limited amount of essentials and evacuate your area.
- For customers with allergies, asthma, or weakened immune systems, they certainly should limit their exposure to affected air, and speak with their doctors as prolonged exposure to these conditions can trigger further health complications.