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‘Like it never happened’

When disaster strikes, ServPro can help restore your home or business

The ServPro of Douglas & Ottertail Counties team includes BJ Long, production technician; Brian Vogel, production technician; Trevor Unruh, marketing representative; and Kevin Richmond, production crew chief. Not pictured, Trevor Rossum, owner. Photo by Kate Erdman

There is no way to prevent a disaster; however, you can be prepared in case one happens. From a burst pipe in the basement to faulty wiring in a wall – fire and water losses are never planned, but they do occur. The best way to ease the consequences of these situations is to know what to do when and if it happens.

ServPro of Douglas & Otter Tail Counties is located at 2605 Aga Drive, Suite 3 in Alexandria. It is available with equipment to clean up or dry out your home, office, or possessions after bad things happen such as fire, smoke or water damage. They can also get rid of mold or clean for you before moving into a new home or apartment. One of their goals is to make the customer feel “like it never happened.” Their vision is “To be the most recognized and respected mitigation and restoration company in West Central Minnesota.”

Their goal is to do this in a professional manner with mutual respect, honesty and positive attitudes toward customers. Emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours, and they aim to respond to calls as quickly as possible to minimize damage and get the customer on the road to full property restoration.

Above left: Mold built up on walls in this home ServPro cleaned in Houston, Texas, after a hurricane; upper right: Interior of a Houston home they worked on after the hurricane; right: ServPro cleaned out the home and brought in equipment to dry the interior of the home damaged in the hurricane. Photos contributed

Trevor Rossum purchased the ServPro franchise for this area in June 2016. As part of the nationwide corporation, he first attended a three-week course in Gallatin, Tenn. There he learned about the business and made some life-long friends and business colleagues.

Trevor’s first production month was July 2016. Since then he has been building his business, which now includes four full-time employees, four ServPro green service vehicles and a vast array of clean-up equipment, including vacuums, generators, fans, heaters, air movers, hoses and air scrubbers. They cover the entire West Central Minnesota area and can help other franchise areas if needed.

For example, after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas they sent a six-person crew to Houston to help with cleanup efforts. They currently have two employees in Mississippi, where they are helping clean up after cold temperatures caused pipes to burst. Last summer they also helped in Willmar after heavy rains flooded many homes and businesses.

ServPro is a preferred vendor with many insurance companies and partners with them on most of their projects. After an insurance adjuster has visited the site, they contact ServPro to do the work that is recommended and approved. ServPro files the claims and keeps the customers informed during each step of the cleanup and insurance process.

ServPro of Douglas & Otter Tail Counties employees volunteered to serve food to those in need in between jobs to clean up homes in the Houston area after the city was struck by Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Contributed photo

Another feature of the business is to encourage companies to set up an Emergency Ready Profile. This is a plan of action for businesses to have in place in the event of a disaster or emergency situation. This profile will tag vital places in the building, such as gas and water shut-offs. They work with business owners to understand that the best time to plan for a disaster is not when it happens, but before it happens. According to the latest research, 50 percent of businesses close down following a disaster. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind.

For home and business owners, water damage can lead to a bigger problem – mold. ServPro professionals handle water damages regularly and know prompt action is required to prevent mold growth. These professionals are trained to identify the visible signs of mold and recommend the type of cleanup needed. In most water damage situations, excessive mold growth is not a problem, but it is always best to make sure by having the area inspected by someone experienced in recognizing it.

Meeting people during these situations is not easy.

“The business relies on people having problems,” stated Trevor. “We meet a lot of good people in unfortunate situations.”

That is why Trevor has set a mission for his company to “develop a focused team of individuals who provide superior customer service. This will be accomplished through their mutual respect, positive attitudes, honesty, dedication, job knowledge and excellent communication skills.”

After hurricane Harvey, the neighborhood streets were lined with damaged property caused by the hurricane. Contributed photo

This mission is paying off, as last month was the busiest month they have had so far.

Don’t wait until disaster strikes to know what to do. Become familiar with the companies available to help you during these situations. Keep their phone numbers handy, and be ready for the unexpected. Trust ServPro, a company that provides superior customer service, job knowledge, excellent communication skills, honesty, respect and dedication to each job they take on. Give them a call at (320) 219-6505 or email Trevor at for more information.

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