Property Insurance News

02/19/2019 12:15 PM
Florida Woman Posed As An Adjuster¸ Arrested Twice For Scamming Hurricane Irma Victims
An Orange City woman arrested in January for scamming Hurricane Irma victims was arrested a second time on Monday in Brevard County and accused of committing the same crime¸ state officials said. The office of Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis issued a release stating that Mary Bruce¸ 50¸ was again arrested¸ accused of unlicensed practice of public adjusting and grand theft related to Hurricane Irma. Bruce attempted to steal more than $68¸000 in fraudulent claims¸ the news release states. According to information from Patronis’ office¸ investigators discovered that Bruce approached homeowners whose homes sustained roof and interior damages from the storm. Bruce then told the homeowners that she was an “independent claims adjuster” who could negotiate settlements with insurance companies.

02/15/2019 11:00 AM
Monster Mudslides¸ Water Rescues As Storm Punishes California
Motorists swam for their lives and residents were rescued from homes sliding downhill as the wettest winter storm of the year triggered floods and mudslides across California on Thursday. In Sausalito¸ just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco¸ a mudslide carried away two homes and engulfed five cars¸ sending one woman to the hospital¸ Southern Marin Fire Department tweeted. Dozens of homes were evacuated in the area. In Cabazon¸ about 84 miles (135 km) east of Los Angeles¸ two motorists swam from their vehicle and were rescued by helicopter after their car was engulfed by churning brown floodwaters¸ a California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection spokesman said.

02/14/2019 01:15 PM
Snow Load Collapses Roofs at Marina¸ Store In Olympia
Wet¸ heavy snow is to blame for a series of roof collapses starting Monday evening. Three boats sunk after roofs over two boat sheds at West Bay Marina collapsed. Neil Falkenburg¸ the marina’s general manager¸ said crews had been shoveling snow off sheds in the water since Monday morning. “The first one we shoveled was the first one to collapse¸” he said. That was about 6 p.m. Monday. Another roof collapsed about a half-hour later. Ten other boats were under the collapsed roofs¸ some of which crews were able to move out of the way. “Some of them have to be kind of freed from the metal work that held the roof up. That’s a lot more involved¸” Falkenburg said Tuesday afternoon¸ adding all the owners had been notified.

02/14/2019 10:00 AM
Pineapple Express Brings Mudslide Risk¸ Forces Evacuations East Of Los Angeles
Hundreds of California residents were ordered to evacuate their homes on Wednesday as rain from a powerful Pacific storm raised the risk of mudslides in areas hit by recent wildfires. Some areas around Los Angeles could see over 5 inches (13 cm) of rain from the storm¸ which is being channeled to the coast by a flow of atmospheric moisture known as the “Pineapple Express.” The storm¸ the wettest to hit California this winter¸ was set to peak on Thursday and has already sparked flood watches from Arizona to Washington. Residents of Lake Elsinore¸ 56 miles (90 km) east of Los Angeles got mandatory evacuation orders over risks nearby hillsides scorched by fire in 2018 could turn into rivers of mud and debris that could carry away cars and homes.

02/13/2019 11:45 AM
Aon: January Winter Storms And Extreme Cold Have Cost The US A Billion
Aon’s latest catastrophe report found that last month’s series of storms and severe cold temperatures have cost the US about a billion dollars. The global professional services company’s Global Catastrophe Recap report for January 2019 revealed that for the month of January¸ there were a total of 45 deaths caused by winter storms. Five severe winter events contributed to the total estimated one billion dollar economic loss for the period¸ Aon noted. Of the five events¸ the so-called “Polar Vortex” that affected much of the Eastern US from Jan. 29-31 was the most destructive¸ killing at least 22 people and racking up an estimated total economic and insured loss within the hundreds of millions.

02/13/2019 11:00 AM
Straight Line Winds Damage Central Alabama Communities
Reports of apparent wind damage are coming in from Elmore¸ Autauga¸ and Montgomery counties after a strong storm swept across the state Tuesday morning. Alabama Power crews are continuing to work to restore service to customers affected by storms. At 4 p.m. there were approximately 510 customers in central Alabama without service including Wallsboro: 170 customers; Montgomery: 140 customers; Opelika: 100 customers; Wetumpka: 40 customers. In Autauga County¸ the Emergency Management Agency says there are multiple trees down in Prattville’s Camellia Estates with a tree reportedly down on a Wisteria Lane. There are no reports of injuries at this point. In Montgomery County¸ one person reported multiple employee vehicles at the Hyundai plant near Hope Hull had their windows knocked out and that a light pole was bent over in the storm. Hyundai spokesman Robert Vance said plant production stopped at 12:30 p.m. so employees could check on their vehicles. Production resumed at 2:30 p.m.

02/12/2019 10:00 AM
Blaze In Historic Building Destroys Five Sandpoint¸ Washington Businesses
Five businesses were destroyed Monday by an early-morning fire that tore through a historic brick building in downtown Sandpoint. City officials estimated the fire caused between $4 million and $7 million in damage to the 100-year-old structure. City Administrator Jennifer Stapleton said seven businesses were affected by fire¸ smoke or water damage¸ while five were a total loss. The Grace Sandpoint church was saved but damaged. “This is obviously a devastating incident for us¸” Stapleton said Monday. “Not only for those businesses directly impacted¸ but our businesses in the surrounding area.” Stapleton said the fire began at about 1 a.m. along North First Avenue¸ between Bridge Street and Main Street. The cause has not been determined.

02/11/2019 01:30 PM
Man Falls From 3rd Story Hotel Window After His Room Catches On Fire
A man was seen hanging from a third-floor hotel room window when fire crews responded to a system alarm¸ Wichita Fire Department Lt. Jose Ocadiz said on Monday. The firefighters could also see smoke coming from the Best Western room¸ he said. That was on Sunday morning at Best Western¸ 4742 S. Emporia¸ in south Wichita. The first responders contained the majority of the fire to that “room of origin” with the help of the hotel’s fire sprinkler system. Ocadiz said the fire was intentionally set¸ but the cause is still under investigation. The man who was hanging from the window fell down and received serious injuries from the fall¸ Ocadiz said. He was the only person in the hotel room. The fire caused $100¸000 in structural damage and $25¸000 in content damage. Most of the damage was a result of the sprinkler system¸ he said.

02/08/2019 12:45 PM
Managing A New Era Of Repairs: Restoration Trends To Watch In 2019
Historically¸ the insurance claims process for property damage starts with a claims professional assessing damage on-site and ends by giving a homeowner a check for fixing the damage. This old model places the responsibility on the property owner to research and vet qualified contractors to start the restoration process¸ a particularly heavy burden to bear in moments of crisis. When extreme weather events such as hurricanes or wildfires devastate policyholders’ homes and surrounding communities¸ victims who need extensive repairs often don’t have the luxury of time or the necessary resources to shop around for the most reliable contractor. Recognizing this¸ the property insurance sector is catching up to how auto claims have integrated the restoration process for more than two decades.

02/07/2019 12:45 PM
Pennsylvania Socialite Convicted Of Filing $13 Million In Fraudulent Claims
A Buckingham socialite known for her lavish lifestyle could spend the rest of her life in state prison after she was convicted Tuesday of filing nearly $13 million in false insurance claims following a 2013 fire at her family’s 10-acre estate. After a 4-1/2 hour deliberation¸ the jury of 10 men and two women convicted Claire Risoldi¸ 71¸ on six of nine charges¸ finding she cheated insurer AIG out of $2.75 million it paid for false claims related to drapes and alternative living expenses¸ and she attempted to bilk the insurer out of another $10 million for a false claim on a separate jewelry policy.