After a flood, the combination of water and organic matter can lead to mold. Louisiana's heat and humidity can exacerbate the problem. Here are some quick tips to help you avoid further damage:

  1. Follow the guidelines of your insurer. This is extremely important because it may affect your coverage. 
  2. Contact FEMA and local government emergency preparedness for additional guidance and procedures.
  3. Document any and all damages using pictures, written notes and video.
  4. Protect yourself by wearing long sleeves, pants, gloves and a NIOSH-approved N95 respirator or consider hiring a professional to handle cleanup.
  5. Begin the cleanup process. Adjusters will want to see that you are working to mitigate any additional damage.
  6. Turn off the heat or air conditioning to stop mold spores from spreading.
  7. Remove, bag and throw out any damp or wet materials, especially those with heavy mold growth (ceiling tiles, leather, carpet, padding, wood products, padding). Remove interior wall cladding two feet beyond the water damage; baseboards and flooring. It is important to get these materials out of the home.
  8. Use detergent in hot water and scrub the moldy area using a hard brush or cleaning pad on rough areas.
  9. Rinse the whole area with hot water. A wet-dry vacuum can be used up to pick up additional water or hire a water extraction company to help you remove water from floors and walls.
  10. Fully dry the area for two-to three days using dehumidifiers or fans to speed the process.  Consider opening the windows, doors and cabinet doors to make sure everything is completely dry.  This is extremely important to protect the overall air quality of your home.
  11. Vacuum your home with a HEPA filtered vacuum.