Snow Storms And Insurance Claims
Record snowfalls in the northeast have greatly increased the number of insurance claims for snow damage, forcing many insurance companies to add personnel to work as claims adjusters to handle the incoming traffic. A significant number of problems affecting homes are related to snow pileup that damages roofs, as well as creating “ice dams.”
Ice dams are ridge of ice that forms along the edge of a roof and then prevents melting snow from being able to drain off the roof. Those lovely icicles are an indicator that your home may be facing water damage. Trapped water flows – and may end up in your walls, ceilings and insulation. Ice dams can also tear off the gutters, cause shingles to become loose and most commonly, will allow water to pour into your home. The outcome can be a disaster, with a stained and sagging ceiling, as well as soaked attic insulation which can then become a home for dangerous types of mold or mildew. One insurance company reports that about 25% of the new claims are related to damage caused by ice dams.
Roofing companies are overwhelmed with emergency calls for roof repairs and are racing to put together crews to assist customers throughout hardest hit areas.
Car insurance companies may soon be increasing numbers of adjusters as travel bans are lifted. Snowbanks that are six feet high or more leave drivers at risk when creeping out to check lanes, and generally dangerous road conditions.
When Will it End?
February 2015 obliterated any previous record for snowfall on record in Boston, and in over two years, the area has experienced three of the top seven heaviest snowstorms ever. People living in the cities and towns throughout Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont and the rest of New England are wondering when it will end. Changing weather patterns and flow of arctic air have left some areas of the country in severe drought while others are suffering from the winter that appears that it will never end, with more storms on the way.
It is predicted that the numbers of homeowners and drivers filing claims will continue to rise, with insurance companies scrambling to evaluate the damage. Homeowners may be facing wait time for an adjuster, and should keep a video and photo record of damage to the home.