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How to deal with home repairs during a coronavirus outbreak



How to deal with home repairs during a coronavirus outbreak

When Tony Nittoli from North Hollywood noticed a leak under his bathroom sink in mid-April, he tied it up with an old T-shirt and put junk mail under it. He usually calls his apartment manager to take care of it, but the health official’s orders are clear: stay inside and away from the others to slow the spread of the corona virus.

“What does it mean if I don’t go out if I have someone who goes to some house that comes to my house?” Nittoli said. “That defeats its purpose.”

Plumbers, electricians and masons and women were considered important workers during the COVID-19 crisis. They keep coming to the rescue when a pipe burst or electricity becomes damaged. This is often a dangerous occupation, despite the pandemic.

But what if it’s not life or death, but life and discomfort? If the washing machine won’t wash or the screen door won’t be smooth, does it make sense to call a professional? Does bringing a worker – or several – jeopardize your and their safety? Have you tried doing it yourself? Is fixing the sink as easy as making bread?

Safety first

Although home improvement workers have never been ordered to store their equipment, business practices have shifted to meet the moment, according to several industry stakeholders.

Workers are required to wear masks and keep their distance from others in the house, apartment or commercial space where they work, as in other important businesses, according to public health guidelines. Some companies dress their workers with additional protective equipment, such as gloves and boots.

For Mike Rios, who owns and manages seven rental units in West L.A., adjustments are not difficult.

The bookkeeper “wears a mask and [it’s] business as usual, “he said.

Talieh Safadi, owner of Help Squad, a repair company with locations in Brentwood, said he usually asks customers to walk around while work is being done or living in another room.

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Tom Bannon, chief executive of California Apartments Assn., Who represents the interests of rental housing, agreed that the safety protocol is a two-way street.

Repair workers are asked to follow the CDC guidelines, “And you hope that residents can do the same,” Bannon said.

When should I call a professional?

If this is an emergency or serious problem, make a call.

Some repairs cannot be delayed. Lack of untreated electricity can trigger a fire. A pipe leaking in one apartment can cause thousands of dollars in water damage throughout the complex. In such situations, it is important to bring in a trained professional, ideally before the situation becomes dire.

If it’s not urgent, weigh the risk.

If you are a family of five and your washing machine is broken, it might not be appropriate to switch to the washing board.

If it is not urgent, Safadi recommends people over the age of 65 or with an underlying health condition to delay work for several weeks. If they need to go forward with improvements, he suggests increasing safety precautions.

Apartment owners still have an obligation to make repairs within a reasonable period of time, but Bannon stresses that the pandemic has influenced what makes sense.

Some tenants do not want home improvement workers in their units – and it is difficult from a legal point of view for homeowners to enter units against their will, Bannon said. On the other hand, some maintenance workers are hesitant to put themselves at unnecessary risk. The latter makes it more difficult to find someone to handle work immediately and increase completion time for some repairs, he added.

“This is not the right time for maintenance unless it’s a serious problem,” Bannon said.

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The need for improvement is increasing

People in the industry agree that the level of comfort around home improvements seems to be increasing – maybe because of necessity.

According to ServiceTitan, a technology company that develops software for home service workers, revenue for contractors in California in the first two weeks of May jumped 10% compared to the same period last year. And the number shows an increase nationally.

Calls never stopped completely for contractor Edward Flanagan, even though they fell significantly after orders to stay in California homes were put in place. He estimates that he gets half as much business as usual now, compared to a quarter as much as in mid-March.

Many large housing projects that Safadi has prepared, including the work of more than $ 100,000 to turn a garage into a living space, are being postponed. But he said he was making more quota requests, including calls about broken dishwashers, toilets, garbage disposal, doors and faucets. More time at home means more wear.

“Remember, we are all at home, including myself and my wife, when locked up,” Safadi said. “And guess what? There are many problems with maintenance because everyone is at home. “

Should I try to do it myself?

Those who are worried about exposure to viruses or who are underfunded might consider the DIY approach. Professionals urge caution.

Most of the plumbing and electricity work, for example, should be left to professionals.

“One mistake can cause more damage,” Safadi said.

“If you don’t know how to snake pipes or dump garbage, it might leak overnight,” he explained. In a multi-unit complex, it can be expensive: “Because it leaks into the unit below or the unit next to it and then it becomes a very big thing.”

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In addition to property damage, “there is potential damage you can do to yourself,” Bannon said, pointing to garbage disposal as a source of danger.

But home maintenance falls on the spectrum of difficulties, said Bob Burke, chief executive of Clinical Repair, a company that offers step-by-step repair tutorials.

“What we see is that people have real needs, partly because of the pandemic, partly because the situation is breaking up because they are at home, and I think people now realize that they can do more than they might think, “Burke said.” People learn to be creative. “

The service is starting to see engagement with younger audiences, especially in the age range of 22 to 35, according to Peter Krauss, president of the company. Typical customers are 45 or older, he said.

Marnie Sehayek originally intended to pay a friend who was useful to build a closet in his apartment in Koreatown. When L.A. issuing safer orders at home in mid-March, it no longer seems wise. Instead, he watched videos, conferred with friends, borrowed equipment from neighbors and did it himself for several weeks.

“To be honest, I feel like I’m in Marx Brothers’ play in almost every part of it,” he said, adding that it was finally put together. “It’s not completely perfect, but it really works for me.”

Then there are the basics, such as how to turn on and turn off the breaker, and where the main water stops, the things that Flanagan said must be known to everyone. If not, you can waste water and electricity, he said.

“I think it’s good for people to have more knowledge about it happening,” he said, “and maybe this will give us an opportunity for people to do that.”

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Joao Almeida became the champion of Portugal in cycling



Joao Almeida became the champion of Portugal in cycling

This Sunday, Portuguese cyclist João Almeida (UAE-Emirates) became the Portuguese champion in cross-country cycling for the first time, winning the elite national championships held in Mogaduro.

In his first online race since Joao Almeida was forced to pull out of the Vuelta Italia after testing positive for the coronavirus, he won his first national title since becoming time trial champion in 2021.

Almeida crossed the finish line in Mogadora, covering the 167.5 km distance in 4:08.42 hours, 52 seconds behind Thiago Antunes (Efapel) second, Fabio Costa (Glassdrive-Q8-Anicolor) third, and Rui Oliveira (UAE). – Emirates), fourth.

In the end, João Almeida stated that he was “very pleased” with the victory, admitting that the race “went very well” and thanking his teammates.

Former national champion José Neves (W52-FC Porto) did not finish the race, as did Rafael Reis (Glassdrive-Q8-Anicolor) who won the time trial title on Friday.

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Portuguese military admits ‘it will take time’ until territory is taken under control



Portuguese military admits 'it will take time' until territory is taken under control

The “path” chosen for about a year in the fight against rebel groups in the province of Cabo Delgado in northern Mozambique is “the right one,” Brigadier General Nuno Lemos Pires said in an interview with Lusa.

“Now, while the situation is not fully under control, we all understand that, as in any other counter-terrorism situation in the world, it will take a lot of time,” added the head of the European military training mission, although he acknowledged that this “ does not mean that sometimes there are no fears and failures.

However, “this is part of what constitutes an action taken against terrorists who operate in a very wide area, who in themselves have the initiative and the ability to hide in a very wide area,” he said.

In fact, he stressed, many of the recent attacks that have taken place in the south of Cabo Delgado in recent weeks are due to the fact that Islamist extremist rebels had to “flight from the north” of the province.

“Because this was a consolidated military operation carried out in close cooperation between the Mozambique Defense and Security Forces (FSS), [e com as forças d]Rwanda and SAMIM (Southern African Development Community Mission (SADC) in Mozambique), who were clearing out the intervention areas that existed in the area, the reaction of many terrorists was to flee the area, go further south, where they were not pursued. , and make new attacks,” he explained.

“In such cases, the initiative almost always belongs to the terrorists. There are few of them, they hide among the population, they move over very large territories, with a lot of dense vegetation, it becomes very difficult to find them, but you can easily move,” he continued.

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On the other hand, the Portuguese general emphasized, “it is now difficult for these groups” “to concentrate power and forces for large-scale operations, as was the case three years ago during the conquests, such as Mocimboa da Praia or Palma.” ,” he said.

“They don’t have that ability. Many of these attacks even demonstrate [estratégias] survival [clássicas das guerrilhas]. They’re looking for food, they’re looking for supplies, they’re searching deep down for a place where they can survive, because the area is already under quite a lot of control. [por parte] Mozambique FSS, Rwandan forces and SAMIM,” he explained.

In this context, Nuno Lemos Pires highlighted the “quick response” of the Mozambican authorities to each of these developments, starting with head of state Filipe Nyusi.

“I think it is exemplary that the moment there is a movement or a series of significant attacks in other areas, we immediately see the President of Mozambique heading north, linking up with his Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces (CEMGFA). , with the Minister of Defense, with the Minister of the Interior, and outline plans on the ground for a quick change of equipment and the ability to respond to such movements,” he said.

During one such trip to northern Mozambique in mid-June, Mozambican Interior Minister Arsenia Massingue said that Mozambican police were informing the “enemy” – the rebel forces in Cabo Delgado – about the positions of the FDS and allied forces on the ground.

However, Lemos Pires downplayed the situation. “We must be aware that there are infiltrations in any political system. It’s happening everywhere. Ignoring this dimension is tantamount to ignoring what is happening everywhere,” he said.

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“I don’t know of a single case of insurgency, counterinsurgency, terrorist or counter-terrorist combat where these leaks didn’t happen frequently. You need to be careful. .

In addition to the vastness of the territory that has been the scene of conflict and the topography favorable to insurgent guerrilla strategies, the porous borders with Tanzania to the north of Cabo Delgado and Malawi to the northwest also pose a danger. challenges the SDF and allied forces of SAMIM and Rwanda.

Lemos Pires also relativized this question. “We are talking about transnational terrorism, and it is good to understand that the situation in the north of Mozambique, in Cabo Delgado, is not limited and is not limited – and has never been limited – exclusively and exclusively to this region. A phenomenon that exists throughout Africa. , namely in Central Africa,” he said.

The UETM commander even took advantage of this circumstance to formulate an “extended response” to “a broad problem, a regional one, and the solution must also be a broad regional one.”

Therefore, “it’s very good what we see here on the ground, in fact, this is the unification of the efforts of regional African forces to try to deal with a problem that really worries everyone,” he concluded.

“What happens in one region can affect another. That is why it is in everyone’s interest that these groups be fought, detained and that the narrative that they are currently spreading can be counteracted – we hope that there are fewer and fewer successes,” the Portuguese general stressed.


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Lusa/The End

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Sporting confirmed the title of champion of Portugal in futsal and became a two-time champion of the country – Notícias de Coimbra



Sporting confirmed the title of champion of Portugal in futsal and became a two-time champion of the country - Notícias de Coimbra

Today, Sporting CP confirmed the title of Portuguese futsal and became the champion of the country, once again beating Benfica 4:3 in the third game of the play-off final at the Pavilão Joao Rocha stadium in Lisbon.

With this triumph, the Lions add their 17th national title, become two-time champions and achieve something unprecedented in the sport in Portugal, reaching the title by winning every play-off game and completing this feat with three wins in the final against rival Lisbon , winning the first two matches 5-4 and 4-3 respectively.

If in the first two matches the “lions” always started on the losing end, this time the team of Nuno Dias reversed the trend and led through Pauleto (05 minutes), making it 2-0 due to Cavinato (13) and Cardinal (18). ) signed a third before the break.

In the second half, André Sousa (26) moved to Benfica, Ziki (33) turned Léonin’s lead into a 4-1 lead, and Artur scored twice for the Eagles (34 and 39).

Sporting seized the initiative from the very beginning, and after Pani Varela threatened to hit the post, Pauleta really opened the scoring for the Lions with the next move, only having managed to pull over to the side of the road with a well-aimed blow. pole, after help from Eric.

Alvalade’s team were encouraged by the goal, and in the following betting twice he cost Benfica André Sousa, who, thanks to two excellent interventions, avoided Sporting’s second goal.

However, even the “elastic” goalkeeper of the “eagles” could not prevent the score from 2:0 in the 13th minute, when Cavinato appeared “in the face” of the goalkeeper to deflect a free kick from Alex Merlin.

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The “party”, which took over the Joao Rocha pavilion due to the Lions’ two-goal advantage, led to an overabundance in the stands: the fans broke the glass next to the “red” bench, due to which the game was interrupted for several minutes.

Three minutes before the end of the first half, Benfica had a great opportunity to close the gap: Sporting punished Sporting with a free kick for the sixth foul: Arthur missed him in a one-on-one match with Goncalo Portuguese, hitting the post.

The “punishment” for the Luz team was even more severe a minute later when the Cardinal made it 3-0 to the national champions. Pauleta, in an individual move, took all the defense of the “Reds” to the “tug” and filed for a support, which, in front of the helpless Andre Souza, chose a side and struck for the score.

In the second half, despite a greater lead in the match when Benfica appeared to be shaken by a big disadvantage, Sporting saw the opposition close in on the score thanks to a 26th-minute André Souza goal. even touched Merlin before entering the gate in Gitta’s defense.

Shortly after that, Benfica could have re-entered the final discussion, but Arthur, after a combination with Carlos Monteiro, hit the post again, missing the opportunity to make the score 3:2.

Benfica failed, while Sporting responded with a fatality, and Ziki stamped his name on the scorecard in the 33rd minute: first Pani Varela hit the iron, and then the green-white center was faster on reload.

After two iron balls, Artur finally “set” his goal and lowered it to 4-2 in the 34th minute. Toward the last minute, the central “incarnate” made the score 4:3 and left the result open until the end, but Sporting even became the national champion for the seventh time during the “reign” of Nuno Diaz as coach of the team from Alvalade. .

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The game was played at the Joao Rocha Pavilion in Lisbon.

Sporting – Benfica, 4-3.

During the break: 3-0.


1:0, Pauleta, 05 min.

2:0, Cavinato, 13.

3-0, Cardinal, 18.

3-1, André Sousa, 26.

4-1, Ziki, 33.

4-2, Arthur, 34.

4-3, Arthur, 39 years old.


– Sporting: Gitta, Eric Mendonza, Joao Matos, Diego Cavinato and Alex Merlim. Also playing were Tomas Paco, Cardinal, Pauleta, Pani Varela, Esteban Guerrero, Ziki Te and Gonçalo Portugal.

Coach: Nuno Dias.

– Benfica: Andre Souza, Romulo, Robinho, Rocha and Ivan Chishkala. Also played were Afonso Jesus, Artur, Carlos Monteiro, Bruno Sintra, Rafael Henmi, Silvestre Ferreira and Jacaret.

Coach: Pulpis.

Referees: Cristiano Santos (Porto), Ruben Santos (Porto) and Joao Sinval (Braga).

Disciplinary Actions: Yellow card for Robinho (11), Bruno Sintra (12), Cardinal (12), Jacaret (16), Pauleta (29), Romulo (32), Zika (32) and Afonso Jesus (34).

Attendance: about 2000 spectators.

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