Collections Salvage and Recovery
After an emergency event, re-entry into storage rooms may be delayed by dangers in the building such as structural instability, electrical hazards, the presence of hazardous materials in floodwater (see “Re-entry”), or by external hazards such as icy driving conditions, downed electrical wires and debris in the roads. Personal safety is the first consideration in all emergencies. Even after being given permission by first responders to re-enter, personal safety equipment may be needed.
Taking the correct steps in salvaging collections immediately after an emergency will maximize recovery efforts. This section offers information on:
- Documenting the salvage operation to ensure that records essential to the ongoing preservation and care of collections are made
- Dealing with residues such as mold, soot, odors and mud that remain after an emergency event
- Freezing wet collections to “buy time” to respond
- Stabilizing wet collections
For more information on salvage techniques by material type visit the Materials Specific section of this site.