ALBANY N.Y. – As temperatures rise and the weather forecast in the Buffalo area calls for rain over the weekend, the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) urges residents to stay alert to potential hazards that could lead to water damage and roof collapses.
“This new weather system on top of the massive snow amounts that have already accumulated has the potential to place significant stress on older, weaker structures,” said Chris Hackett, director of personal lines for PCI. “We encourage homeowners to exercise caution in removing snow from their roof. The dangers associated with extreme weather such as carbon monoxide poisoning, fires and being injured while trying to remove snow or repair property should not be underestimated. We urge property owners to think safety first and when appropriate, seek experienced professional help in remedying problems.”
Also with the melting snow and rain, there is an elevated risk of flooding. While some floods take several days to develop, flash floods can occur quickly. As a result, individuals should take steps in advance to prepare. In the event of a flood, consumers who have flood insurance policies can contact either their flood insurance agent or the National Flood Insurance Program. It is important to remember that flood damage is generally only covered by flood insurance, which is bought as a separate policy through the National Flood Insurance Program.
Winter storms can cause significant damage and insurers are ready to work with consumers to minimize the inconveniences and help make the claims process go as smoothly as possible. If your home or property has experienced damage, you should report the claim to your insurance company or agent as soon as possible to begin the recovery process.
PCI offers consumers the following tips for filing claims and preparing for winter storms:
Cold Weather Homeowners Tips
Tips for Homeowners
The most frequent problems for homeowners during major snowstorms are power outages, falling trees and damage caused by those falling trees. Consumers should also take note of the following:
If your property does sustain damage, take the following action:
To settle your claim more quickly and accurately, prepare as much information as possible about your damaged possessions when your insurance adjuster comes to look at your property.