Emergency Art & Collectibles Restoration Services
Emergency Restoration Services (“ERS”) are clean up and restorative services for your home, business, and personal property that are provided by experts after such catastrophes as flooding, storm or fire, mold, crime or bio-hazard damage has occurred
Emergency restoration experts are normally experienced in working with insurance companies or public adjusters. Many ERS providers include the transporting of your personal property to a temperature controlled, secure storage facility as well as restoration of that property and your home or business building. However, most Emergency Restoration Services do not possess the expertise to restore fine works of art.
If your ERS company does not have personnel who are highly trained and experienced in repairing and restoring art and collectibles, you should insist that they retain a professional art restoration / conservation company to provide such services. Art can be damaged in a fire or water emergency in a number of ways. Any fire in a building can cause heat and smoke damage to a piece of art even in the cases where the flame did not reach the object. Moreover, art can be severely damaged in a flood or water leak emergency even if water never reaches the artwork. The humidity and other environmental conditions surrounding a flood can damage or compromise fine art (e.g. mold, medium separation, support warping, etc.).
Consequently, it is always best that your ERS company employ art conservation experts to evaluate the artwork that may have been effected in a fire or water accident. These experts should be contacted immediately, as time is of the essence to properly remove art from the damaged building and to stop any ongoing damage to the artworks.
In addition, there are some emergency restorative actions that you can take immediately after a disaster or accident. These fast actions can actually help minimize damage and insure your safety.
Flood – Water Damage: Don’t use electronic or electrical devices that have been exposed to water until they are been checked. Wipe water from all wood surfaces but do not attempt to wipe or wash surfaces of artworks. If it is summer and safe to do so turn on air conditioning to assist the drying process and if it’s winter, alternate between opening the windows and turning on the heat to promote drying. Even if the water spill is small, leave it to the professionals to check out and do the actual structural drying as they possess the technology to do so, so that mold and mildew do not occur and add to the damage.
High Wind and Storm Damage: If the roof has been damaged, cover it with plastic or tarps as long as you are certain it is safe to do so. If possible, board up / cover any broken windows. If you have any doubts as to the safety of the structure or roof, wait for the professionals to get there.
Fire and Smoke Damage: Close doors where the fire was to prevent other rooms from spillover smoke damage. Open windows to ventilate if it is safe to do so. Never use electrical devices of any kind until they have been checked out and declared safe.