What Is Black Water?
Black water, also known as category 3 water damage, is the worst type of water to encounter in a flood situation. The name stems from the fact that this type of water is often dark, murky, and potentially teeming with bacteria that can cause significant illness if ingested or if droplets are inhaled. More than any other type of water damage situation, black water flooding warrants the services of a professional remediation and restoration team in order to minimize bacterial growth and ensure proper sterilization of affected property.
The Dangers of Black Water
Black water can cause illness if inhaled or ingested, if it enters any open cuts, wounds, scratches, etc., and if it comes into contact with skin. Possible infections that can be contracted from black water include:
- Cryptosporidiosis (most common)
Although the symptoms each of these diseases provoke are slightly different, in general you could expect to experience some combination of diarrhea, dehydration, high fever, abdominal pain, chills, and loss of appetite.
The Causes of Black Water Flooding
Black water is what results when there is significant organic matter present in a body of water. This includes water from streams and rivers that rise and flood, ground surface water that flows horizontally into a home, and certain stagnant liquids. In each instance, these waters are highly supportive of bacterial growth and can easily contain numerous pathogens. Naturally, water from overflowing toilets and sewage backups, especially anything with feces, is also a form of black water.
The Levels of Black Water Damage
Although black water is the worst type of floodwater, the damage it can cause is dividable into three different categories. The category describes the extent of the damage and level of remediation required.
Level I Category 3 Black Water
With black water, this is usually a limited waste issue—often from a minor toilet overflow. Only a small area is affected, no porous materials are involved, and there is no wall or floor penetration along with a limited time of exposure,
Level II Black Water Damage
An entire room or space has been flooded. Porous materials may be involved and there is the risk or presence of wall or floor infiltration. Furniture will need to be removed, inspected, and decontaminated or disposed of.
Level III Black Water Damage
Advanced flood situation that usually means the water is coming in from above or flowing in from outside, such as from the septic system or an overflowing river. Wall saturation is over two feet high and there is a greater health risk because the water will be sitting for a prolonged period.
Professional Black Water Flood Cleanup Services in Mississauga
Managing an effective flood cleanup is a challenging task under normal circumstances, and black water flooding creates very real health risks that should not be tackled without professional and expert help. Flood Services Inc. stands ready to provide quick-response cleanup services across the GTA, Mississauga, and beyond, and will use the best techniques, personnel, and technology to ensure your home or business is clean, safe, and dry as soon as possible. Our teams will drain flood water, seek out and eliminate hidden moisture pockets, and thoroughly inspect, disinfect, and save as much of your property as possible. Contact us at (416) 302-2107 to learn more about how to manage flood situations, or use our emergency hotline at (416) 999-3930 to get our rapid response teams deployed to your area.