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So, how do you know just how safe you are with water damage? American Restoration Water & Fire can tell you—based on their Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) training, certification, and knowledge.

Just as it is important to know who to call during a flooding emergency, it is equally important to know just what category of flooding your home or office has experienced to know if you’re in danger. According to the IICRC, there are three important “cleanliness” levels of water damage that you should know. Those levels are:

Category I: If your home or business has been flooded by a sanitary source, such as a water heater leak or other “clean” form of water—this is considered to be Category I. However, this “category” can easily lead to a Category II event, if left unattended or if contaminants seep into the flooded area;

Category II: Any leak or flooding event that includes what experts call “gray water”. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, “’gray water’ is water from a household that does not contain contaminates.” This can include water from dishwashers, washing machines and toilets that does not contain urine or feces;

Category III: This is the most serious of all home and business flood categories. Often called “black water,” this type of flooding comes from sewer backups, toilet overflows, and highly stagnant liquids that support bacterial growth and disease. Exposure to Category III flooding can cause very severe reactions and illnesses, leading to death.

That is why it is so important to contact an IICRC Professional who can immediately assess your flooding situation and offer life-saving direction to keep you and your family safe. For more information on all of American Restoration’s certifications and licenses, call 505-206-5277. And, of course, if you are in immediate danger, do not hesitate to contact 911.