7951 E. Maplewood Avenue, Suite 110
Greenwood Village, Colorado 80111
Serving Colorado, New Mexico, Utah & Wyoming
Carole Walker, Executive Director
303-790-0216 or toll free 800-355-9524
May 20-22 CO Storms Carry a $109 Million Insurance Price Tag
June 2, 2014 – Thousands of Colorado homeowners and drivers have spent the past few weeks meeting with their insurance adjusters, along with car repair shops and roofing contractors getting "the fix" on Mother Nature's latest round of damaging hail, wind and flooding. The series of May storms have caused an estimated $109.3 million in insured losses resulting from 28,442 auto and homeowners insurance claims filed so far. The damage estimates include 18,538 car insurance claims adding up to more than $57,000,000 and 9,904 property insurance claims at nearly $52,000,000.
The insured losses include a week's worth of severe weather starting Tuesday, May 20th with hail pounding the eastern plains into parts of Littleton, then as tornado sirens blared early Wednesday afternoon, funnel clouds swirled over Aurora accompanied by golf ball-sized hail and heavy rains that cut a swath from northern Colorado to the Denver Metro area and south through Colorado Springs. Several more rounds of storms rounded out the week adding to the widespread damage.
"Unfortunately this is just our first glimpse of what Mother Nature can dish out during severe weather and wildfire season," says Carole Walker, Executive Director of the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association. "Already Colorado is dealing with everything from damaging hail to flooding and even a massive mudslide in Mesa County. It all sends a clear message—check your insurance to know what it covers, what it doesn't and how much financial protection you have when you need it the most."
Hail, wind, fire or flood damage to vehicles is covered if you carry comprehensive insurance on your auto policy.
How to file an auto claim:
Homeowners insurance covers damage from hail and wind. Property damage resulting from rising water is covered by a separate flood insurance policy. Land and mud slides are not covered by homeowners or flood insurance—a separate high-risk policy is required. Flood insurance will typically cover what's defined as mudflow. http://www.rmiia.org/catastrophes_and_statistics/Mudslide.asp
How to file a property claim:
Insurance company claim contact information:
In recent years, Colorado has been on a record-breaking storm track that mirrors historic thunderstorm, tornado and hail damage across the country. Colorado severe storms have caused nearly $2 billion in insured losses during the past five years, with the 2009 season being the most expensive in history with $1.4 billion in estimated damage to homes and vehicles (RMIIA).
For more information: http://www.rmiia.org/Catastrophes_and_Statistics/Hail.asp
Colorado's Most Costly Storms
With the exception of the May 22, 2008, Windsor tornado and the hailstorm that hit Pueblo on July 29, 2009, Colorado's ten most costly hailstorms were centered in the Denver Metro area (the largest concentration of property in the state).
||Cost When Occurred
|July 20, 2009
|July 11, 1990
|June 6-15, 2009
|June 6-7, 2012
||CO Front Range
|June 13-14, 1984
|July 29, 2009
|May 22, 2008
|July 13, 2011
||CO Front Range
|June 8-9, 2004
|August 11, 1997
|May 22, 1996
*2013 estimated cost calculations based on the Consumer Price Index.
RMIIA recommends that you take these preventative steps:
SELECT IMPACT-RESISTANT ROOFING
- Your roof is the most vulnerable part of your home, so when building a new home or replacing your roof consider using impact-resistant roofing products. Most insurance companies either surcharge or only offer a percentage deductible for wood shake or non-impact resistant roofs. When hail destroys roof coverings, it can lead to water damage to your ceilings, walls, floors, appliances and personal possessions.
- The insurance industry has an impact-resistant roofing Underwriters Laboratory standard ranking, the UL 2218 standard. The standard has four impact-level designations that will help you compare products. Roof coverings that show the most resistance earned a Class 4 rating; the least, a Class 1 rating.
DO AN ANNUAL INSURANCE CHECK-UP
- Insurance is something most people don't even want to think about until they need it the most. But, understanding what is and isn't covered in your homeowners' insurance policy can mean the difference of being able to rebuild your home and replace your personal belongings. Homeowners need to do annual insurance policy "check-ups" to make sure they keep up with local building costs and have adjusted their coverage to include home remodeling and additions.
- If you don't have replacement coverage, consider spending a few extra dollars for coverage that pays for the cost of replacing the damaged property without deduction for depreciation. Ask about endorsements for sewer back-up and building code upgrades.
KNOW WHAT IS & ISN'T COVERED
- The typical homeowners' insurance policy covers damage resulting from fire, windstorm, hail, water damage (excluding flooding), riots and explosion as well as other causes of loss, such as theft and the extra cost of living elsewhere while the structure is being repaired or rebuilt.
- Hail and flood damage to your car is covered only if you have purchased optional comprehensive insurance on your auto policy.
- The standard policy does not cover flooding, so you may want to look into flood insurance coverage if you're concerned that you're at risk for rising floodwaters.
CREATE A HOME INVENTORY
- Make a home inventory that includes lists, pictures or a videotape of the contents of your home or apartment. After all, would you be able to remember all the possessions you've accumulated over the years if they were destroyed by a tornado or fire? Having an up-to-date home inventory will help get your insurance claim settled faster, verify losses for your income tax return and help you purchase the correct amount of insurance.
- It's easy to get overwhelmed, but RMIIA has free software that you can download to help simplify the process! You can even add digital photos and scan in receipts, along with your room-by-room online inventory. Free home inventory software or a sample home inventory: http://www.rmiia.org/Homeowners/Walking_Through_Your_Policy/Home_Inventory.asp
Log on to www.rmiia.org for more information.
Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association is a non-profit consumer information organization. Affiliated with the Insurance Information Institute, RMIIA has been serving consumers and the media since 1952.