HELPING YOU PREPARE
for a Hurricane
Hurricanes can include gusty winds, dangerous storm surge and heavy rainfall. When a hurricane is in the forecast, there are several steps you can take to prepare for property loss.
Helping you Prepare for a Hurricane
Hurricanes may cause substantial losses for businesses and residences. Throughout this article, IMA will provide guidance on minimizing risk before a hurricane, reacting to the event, and recovering after the storm has passed.
Find more information at hurricanes.gov
Handling Property Loss
1. SAFEGUARDING YOUR PERSONAL AND BUSINESS PROPERTY:
- Board up the premises
- Anchor or move equipment where necessary
- Inspect and repair roof coverings
- Install shutters or secure windows and doors
- Secure outdoor signs and furniture or move to a protected area
- Clean gutters
- Block water from doorways with sandbags or water tubes
- Check generators and make sure they are working/ filled with fuel
- Check, clean and test all electrical distribution equipment and system components exposed to flood water or humidity
2. FOLLOWING PROPERTY LOSS:
- Do not access the property until water has receded and local authorities have deemed the area safe
- Check the flooded buildings for structural stability before entering
- Survey for safety hazards such as live wires, leaking gas or flammable liquids
- Repair any dangerous conditions
- Make repairs to avoid further damage and to get your business up and running
- Separate damaged property from undamaged property. Do not discard damaged property right away, if possible
- Save evacuation notices from local authorities
- Document all damage by taking photographs
- Arrange for a water restoration company/contractor to start the restoration process to prevent further damage and to assist in post-loss repairs. Our IMA Select claims team can provide names of restoration firms
- If you engage a vendor/contractor for mitigation purposes, keep all receipts, contracts and documentation for the claims adjustor to review
- Contact your insurance carrier directly or contact IMA Select to report the claim
3. DOCUMENTING YOUR LOSS. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE:
- Invoices for any mitigation efforts, including temporary repairs made to secure the property from additional losses
- Repair estimates
- Damage to inventory or equipment
- Employee time for cleanup and mitigation efforts
- Cleanup costs
- If you are unable to operate your business, you must provide:
- Profit and Loss statements (time period will be determined by your carrier)
- Expenses paid to continue operations
Business interruption coverage is intended to compensate your company for the income lost during the period of restoration or the time necessary to restore the physical damage to your covered property. Your insurance carrier should be working with you to ensure you receive the lost profit you would have otherwise earned had the loss not occurred.
Most business interruption claims will have a separate deductible from the damage to covered property. This usually involves a time element, rather than a monetary amount. i.e. a 24, 48, or 72 hour waiting period.
Coverage for a loss is dependent on many factors, including cause of loss, exclusions, endorsements, limits, deductibles and specific facts of loss. IMA will advocate for the broadest possible coverage to maximize your overall recovery. Should there be any disputes, IMA will also assist you in working with the insurance company to re-evaluate its position.
Please be advised that this whitepaper is an educational and informational resource only. The views and statements expressed herein are not to be construed as legal advice from the authors or IMA and such communication is not protected under the attorney client privilege. Recipients should seek specific legal advice from competent legal counsel of your choice.