Electrical fires in the aftermath of Hurricane Sally are still a threat

Electrical fires in the aftermath of Hurricane Sally are still a threat

The effects of Hurricane Sally wind and rain damage are still readily apparent in the Pensacola area. Roofing crews and blue tarps are still visible wherever you travel and many out of state owners have yet to visit their damaged property or await adjuster claims analysis. What may not be so obvious, are storm related damages impacting electrical and mechanical systems in your home or business. From my perspective, too many policyholders blindly follow a contractor or even their insurance company’s desire to “fix up” the damage and move on to the next claim, putting themselves and their property in danger.

We have spoken to and met with many policyholders who have damages that clearly exceed their deductible. A situation that many Hurricane Sally policyholders will identify with. The status of their claim? Who knows! Some tell us an independent adjuster from out of state made a quick 15-minute inspection and left. A follow-up call by the insured to the adjuster results in a response: "I turned your paperwork into the claims office and am no longer involved."  That was it. Further attempts route their inquiries to a call center. How would you like to bet these claims are marked as a closed file being reported to the State by the insurance industry?

But the real issue and concern is when a policyholder advise us that a lot of the electrical circuits in their home no longer worked. Folks, if your home has been damaged, please pay close attention to any electrical problems you see and call a licensed electrical contractor. The danger compounds given the holiday season with additional lights and Christmas trees and the use of heat during cooler weather. The results could be a catastrophic fire and national statistics show this is the worse season for house fires. Pay attention to the conditions around your home or commercial building. Damages from hurricanes especially given the high amount of salt in the air from the winds could be corroding parts of your property’s critical electrical and mechanical systems. Have them inspected before settling any claim.

Here is a link to an excellent article published in the Washington Post about fires and fire safety in your home. Take time to read it and make a plan to escape any fire that may occur. Your plan may make a difference between life and death.

Tutwiler & Associates has been working hurricane claims since 1984. For your own peace of mind, call our Pensacola insurance adjusters now at 850-783-3319 for a free, no-cost claim evaluation, visit our Hurricane Sally Insurance Claim Public Adjuster page for additional information or contact a public adjuster to submit a question to one of our insurance claim experts.

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