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Restaurant Fire Damage Recovery
By the RestorationSOS Educational Staff
Restaurant fire damage is unique in that, in most cases, the restaurant may not continue functioning until everything has been repaired and cleaned up. There is rarely partial operation when it comes to restaurants, since the codes and regulations concerning the preparation and serving of food are quite strict.
For every day a restaurant remains closed, that establishment loses money. It is another day that they are unable to generate income. This is why fire damage recovery in restaurants should begin as soon as possible in order to thoroughly dry everything out.
Restoration is the process of returning the restaurant to its pre-loss condition and this is initially done by performing a complete assessment and inspection of the structure, determining the extent of the damage, what needs to be repaired, and what items such as appliances or furniture may be replaced and what will need to be discarded and replaced. There are also a number of repairs that will need to be made to the kitchen and dining areas in order to return them to their full operating capacity.
Fire damage usually results in a lot of necessary cleaning, namely of soot and ash, as well as the removal of smoke odor. Specialized chemicals may have to be brought in for items such as countertops, kitchen range exhaust hoods, shelving units, walls, ceilings, doors, and appliances. Smoke and soot may also create toxic fumes that may be hazardous if inhaled. In many cases, smoke odor may not be fully removable, which means that the surface will have to be cleaned as thoroughly as possible and then painted and resealed in order to lock in the remaining smoke odor and prevent it from being a continuous nuisance.
Kitchen equipment and appliances damaged by fire may be repaired; however, in many cases, they will need to be replaced. Often the replacement cost is less than what is required to repair it. Replacement is also more convenient in the long run. Repaired units will need to be tested and approved before being placed into service.
Restaurant management will need to cooperate with local fire and health officials throughout the restoration process in order to facilitate the issuance of a certificate of occupancy. This means that the restaurant is now able to reopen for business.
Hopefully, the restaurant also learns from the experience and establishes new and improved operating guidelines designed to prevent similar problems from taking place in the future.
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