After the Fire

After the Fire Checklist
A fire in your home or business can be one of the most tragic events you ever experience. The fire is out, and now you must try to get back to life as usual.

  • When entering the building watch for structural damage caused by the fire. Roofs and floors may be weakened and the ceilings may fall.
  • Fire can rekindle from hidden, smoldering remains. Be watchful for signs of heat or smoke.
  • Household wiring which may have been water damaged should be checked by an electrician before the electricity is turned back on.
  • Do not attempt to restore electric or gas service that has been disconnected to appliances or to the building. Service may be restored only by a representative of the Utility Company.
  • It is not permissible to make repairs without permits and inspections by Lafayette City Building Inspectors. Inspections are also required before utility companies can restore service.
Saving Your Belongings
  • Open windows to minimize smoke odors.
  • Remove all undamaged jewelry, silver, artwork, etc.
  • Contractors who specialize in fire restoration and clean-up, as well as companies who specialize in cleaning fabrics can be found in the yellow pages under the listing Water and Fire Damage Restoration.
  • Commercial laundering/dry cleaning can help remove soot and smoke odor from clothing.
  • Mop floors as soon as possible. Rugs and carpet padding should be taken up and allowed to thoroughly dry.
  • If temperature is below freezing, and the heat is off, a plumber should be called to winterize your plumbing.
  • Do not use TVs or other appliances that have been exposed to heat, until they are checked by a serviceman.
  • Change your filter in your furnace.
  • Do not use food or canned goods that have been exposed to heat.
  • If electric service has been disconnected, have your frozen foods placed in a freezer with 24 hours.
Monetary Replacement
  • Mutilated or melted coins are returnable at the nearest Federal Reserve Bank, or they may be sent by first class registered mail to:
    Superintendent, U.S. Assay Office
    32 Old Slip
    New York, NY 10005.
  • Currency, half or more intact, should be taken to the Federal Reserve Bank or mailed as above, to:
    U.S. Treasury Department, Main Treasury Building
    Washington, D.C. 20220
  • Any mutilated or destroyed bonds are handled by:
    U.S. Treasury Department, Bureau of Public Debt, Division of Loans and Currency
    537 S Clark Street
    Chicago, IL 60605
    Attn: Bond Consultant
    Include name(s) and address(es) on bonds, approximate date or time period purchased, denominations and approximate number of each.
Documents & Records
AFDC and welfare clients should notify case workers if their ID cards have been destroyed. Copies of birth, death, and marriage records can be obtained from the District Court Clerk in the county of birth, death, or marriage.

Additional Questions
Your disaster relief service case worker, the Lafayette Fire Department, or your insurance agent will help you with the many questions you will have in the coming days. In the meantime:
  • Do not throw away any damaged goods until after an inventory is made. All damages are taken into consideration in developing your insurance claim.
  • Do not contract for an estimate, inventory or repair services without 1st consulting your insurance agent or adjuster.
Helpful Phone Numbers
Do not feel that you will be left on your own when the Fire Department leaves. Assistance is available from a number of agencies. View a list of telephone numbers for some of these organizations here to assistance you by either calling or log-on to their websites.