California Fire – A Smoke Filled House- Smoke Damage

Fires in Santa barbara

Fires damage, smoke damage, handling damage and fire retardant damage

Ins Company: Allstate

Client: Private home

Conditions: As with all fires raging through neighborhoods, the fire takes one house here and leaves the other house next door. Such was the case with this Mediterranean style family home. The fire burned right up to the house, the heat cracking the patio cement but “only” filling the house with smoke and ash.

The client’s insurance company was terrific in handling the major damage but “emotional complications” of the insured kept them from addressing the family history items, collectibles and keepsakes right away. In fact, they put off working with the insurance company for a year, although the smell was still present!

Water damage, smoke damage, fire retardants

Fires also result in smoke damage and water damage

We worked between the insurance company and the insured to:

1. move the client along to complete the claim

2. provided a detailed inventory list, with photos

3. proposed treatments for the delicate items that were not to be handled by industrial cleaners (artwork, rare books, sculpture, drawings, photos etc)

4. provided customer service on behalf of the insurance company to keep the client happy and conclude the claim process (which had been dragging on before we came aboard).

Number of Items: Roughly 550 items ranging from various types of paintings, paper items, photos, books, antiques, furniture, statues and assorted dishes.

Damage Evaluated: strong smoke smell and residue.

FACL, Inc. provided conservation.restoration services when needed. (

FACL Appraisals provided valuations when required (

Unburned but full of smoke

Unburned but full of smoke and ash

About Scott Haskins

Scott M. Haskins has been a professional art conservator since 1975. He is also author of "How To Save Your Stuff From A Disaster". He may be contacted at 805 564 3438
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