Hurricane Harvey: Letters from Affected Cleaners to the Cleaning Industry

As we join together to unite in the recovery and restoration efforts, I asked a few of our industries leaders who live and work in the area to share their thoughts with us:




“We need to unite. Texas is strong and I am so thankful I chose to live here with these great folks that are volunteering to rescue and the first responders leaving their own families in jeopardy… as that is what they do. Let’s accentuate the importance for unity, expertise, and most importantly unbiased and agenda-free accurate information.


 Sadly now many of my friends and colleagues and many other strangers can’t even leave their homes. I wish I could do more to stop the bleed, but it has to start somewhere and I am glad we are starting here!


 As a flooring expert, I have been jumping up and down most of my adult life, regarding the lack of education in the floor covering and related assembly floor covering failures. It is important that all involved in the restoration and recovery efforts following the best practices of care, using an educated and knowledgeable approach. Because of my background, I can’t help but be concerned about the future flooring failures, health, and safety concerns as a result of a variety of industries applying less than acceptable industry standards of care during the recovery efforts.


As we aide in the recovery efforts in coming days, weeks, months, and possibly years, let’s “do it right the first time.”




The photo was taken by Kevin Pearson’s office. He shares the following with us as of August 28, 2017:


Hurricane Harvey


“This sums up the situation well…


At my house, we have now had over 23″ of rain and an additional 20″ is predicted. 


Both Houston airports have been under two separate tornado warnings and are closed. Hobby airport has taxiways underwater. Every major road in Houston shut down. Ben Taub hospital being evacuated. Only one way out of Brazoria county because every other way is underwater. 


20,000 cruise passengers stranded in the gulf. We have friends on a ship that can’t get back in. Every waterway from Houston to the coast predicted to reach a major flood stage within the next two days. 


To help you understand the devastation:


Houston is huge. The greater metropolitan area is circled by the Grand Parkway – which is 170 miles long. That makes the area of the circle inside the Grand Parkway over 2200 sq. miles.


2200 square miles of the densely habited, urban and suburban, area is flooded.


Imagine if the entire state of Delaware, with twice the population of Manhattan, was underwater.


That’s Houston.


It’s still raining and thankfully all my family is safe and dry as well as all of my employees. 


August 29, 2017


Also, today there are over 500 roads closed due to water in Houston. 


There is the constant sound of emergency sirens going off all around and helicopters in the air rescuing people. Everyone that has a boat is going to rescue people as well. When I was out earlier this morning, every other truck was pulling a boat to go help somewhere. 


The calls are pouring in and we can’t even get started till the rain quits and the water recedes. “




His advice for those who are going to deploy to the area:


“One issue that I recommend that you stress to those that are considering to head to Houston when they finally allow contractors to enter, is that their contracts back in their state have no power in other states (getting paid) and to coordinate with other IICRC Certified Firms who can give insight relating to local laws, ordinances, etc. A second issue is related to resources:  fuel, food, drinkable water, and housing will be scarce if any available.”


I am proud to be part of the Restoration Industry and I thank Claudia, Kevin, and Anthony for sharing with us.

Hurricane Harvey: An Open Letter from RIA President Chuck Violand on Cleaning Industry Response 

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