After the Storm
Always be careful when entering a structure post-storm. If there is substantial structural damage, contact your local officials before entering. Report downed power lines and gas leaks. Keep electricity turned off if the structure has been flooded.
Protect Your Property
Take reasonable steps to protect your property from further damage. This includes boarding up windows and utilizing sand bags when/where possible.
Report Losses As Soon As Possible
Contact your insurance company as soon as you can. Provide a general description of the damage and have your policy number handy if possible. Write down the representative’s name, phone number and work schedule as soon as you have them.
Prepare A List
Once you can safely return to your home document all damages to the best of your ability utilizing your cellphone with time and date stamps. Keep damaged items or portions of them until the insurance agent has visited. Prepare a list of damaged or lost items.
If you need to relocate, keep records and receipts for all evacuation expenses. Most insurance policies cover emergency living arrangements.
Return Claim Forms
After your insurance company has been notified of your claim, they will send you the necessary claim forms. Fill them out and return as soon as possible. If you do not understand the process, be sure to ask questions and write down the explanation.
When starting the cleanup process, be careful, and use protective eyewear and gloves if available. You may be advised to hire a professional cleaning crew.
After-Storm Safety Tips
Beware of debris- Storms with extensive rain and high winds, such as tropical storms and hurricanes, can cause severe damage and create hazardous conditions such as fallen trees, downed power lines, broken glass, destroyed buildings, and road signs. After the storm passes, be extremely careful as you sort through the wreckage to assess the damage.
Handle power outages safely- Power outages are common after storms and many residents and businesses rely on backup generators until power can be restored. While generators are useful, they also pose certain risks including fire, damage to electrical equipment, and even injury or death. Before using a generator, it’s important to understand these risks and the necessary precautions for safe operation.