The “Category of Water” in Flood Damaged Buildings can Directly Impact Repair & Rebuilding Costs
March 16, 2015
Water can enter a home or building in many ways. Local flooding, leaking roofs and broken plumbing are all potential water sources that can damage or destroy personal belongings, building materials and even result in structural damage. Water damage can even create potential indoor environmental and indoor air quality concerns for building occupants.
If a property does suffer water damage, it is important for people to understand what type of water is in the building so that it can be properly remediated and appropriate measures taken to protect current and future occupants from potential hazards they may encounter.
Depending on the water source and possibly the length of time it has remained in a building, it may contain bacteria, viruses, mold, chemicals, protozoa and even parasites. There are three categories of water that are typically used when classifying a water damage or flooding event. They include:
- Category 1 Water (Clean Water) does not typically result in an immediate health threat to building occupants. This type of water is considered clean at its point of release. Examples include broken water supply lines and the overflow of a sink or tub. It may become increasingly contaminated and as it interacts with materials in the property and supports microbial growth over time.
- Category 2 Water (Grey Water) typically contains a significant amount of biological or physical contaminants that can cause sickness when humans are exposed or if it is accidently consumed. Examples include water discharged from a dishwasher or washing machine. Category 2 Water that is not promptly removed or has remained stagnant for some time could potentially be reclassified as Category 3 Water over time.
- Category 3 Water (Black Water) is grossly contaminated. It may contain harmful pathogens, microbes and chemicals that could cause illness. Sources include sewage, seawater, rising water from rivers or streams, ground surface water or standing water.
“Understanding the category of water that has caused damage is essential for ensuring that repairs are done correctly and the health of future building occupants will not be jeopardized,” said Douglas Waldie, President of Hudson Douglas Public Adjusters, LLC. “At Hudson Douglas Public Adjusters, our professionals understand how these different categories of water can impact both the remediation and rebuilding efforts. This information is part of our evaluation and our negotiations with the insurance provider so that our clients’ claims are handled properly and a comprehensive settlement is reached. This service ensures that the property can be restored to its previous condition.”
The content of this article is intended to provide general information and as a guide to the subject matter only. Please contact an Advise & Consult, Inc. expert for advice on your specific circumstances.