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What to do when your computer takes a bath (Flood Tips)

By September 16, 2013September 9th, 2020Best Practices, Blog

As fellow Boulderites, we’re sharing the pain of the recent 100 year Flood, and wanted to reach out with a quick message on “What to do when your computer takes a bath.”   As this is NO LAUGHING MATTER, we’re just giving you the facts, no humor.   We are sorry if you have had personal or business impacts by the flooding.  Our staff and offices have been impacted as well.

Here are the DONT’s


Floods and their accompanying mayhem are life threatening.  OBEY FOR YOUR HEALTH AND WELLBEING.

DON’T ENERGIZE EQUIPMENT THAT MAY HAVE GOTTEN WET.  Turn off your main power before handling equipment.  Additional damage and possible Electrocution are potential outcomes.  Turn off equipment as soon as you determine it may have gotten wet, even if it is operational at the time.  Do this immediately.

DON’T WAIT TO REMOVE YOUR EQUIPMENT FROM THE HAZARD.  Water and Mud do additional damage the longer your equipment is subjected to it.  As soon as it it safe to remove the equipment to a dry location, please do so.

DON’T FORGET YOUR BACKUP DEVICES AND TAPES.  Get them to dry safety immediately.  If they are needed, they need to be in good condition.

Now for the DO’s

IMMEDIATELY REMOVE YOUR EQUIPMENT FROM THE HAZARD.  At the soonest, and safest, opportunity, get your equipment to a dry location.  PEI is staging locations in our LAB for Impacted Servers and Storage devices from our customer base.  Make arrangements through the PEI Helpdesk.  There is no charge for this dry parking service.  Make arrangements with  Ask for “Dry LAB Parking”

GET YOUR BACKUP DEVICES AND TAPES TO A SAFE LOCATION.  Make arrangements to have access to off-site locations where media is stored, should recovery require you old backups.

WAIT TO ENERGIZE EQUIPMENT.  Until an Engineer can give you the “all-clear” to apply power to wet equipment, wait for the drying process to complete.

IF YOU ARE A DIY (DO IT YOURSELF) RECOVERY TEAM, USE INDUSTRIAL DRYING METHODS.  De-humidifier hardware, heat, drying chemicals, rice, etc. are all helpful.  Mud removal or other decontamination may also be necessary.  We’re not providing those details here – please obtain proper information prior to starting.

MAKE ARRANGEMENTS WITH YOUR PROVIDER (PEI?) FOR PROFESSIONAL RESPONSE.  Disk drives can be recovered, equipment preserved, etc. if a professional is used.  Make use of pro’s that can do the entire job.  Danger of applying power when the cleanup is premature often results in additional destruction.

-Chris Krueger, PEI

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