Bismarck, ND - Commissioner Jim Poolman will visit Grand Forks this afternoon to inspect the damage incurred by the city in last night's storm. Media that would like to meet with the commissioner to discuss insurance-related issues should contact Don Canton at 701.328.2484 to arrange an interview.
Although the storm lasted only about 20 minutes, it reportedly brought 100-mile-an-hour gusts and dropped more than two inches of rain. "This storm hit fast and furiously. Initial reports suggest it did a great deal of damage in a very brief period of time," Poolman said.
Meanwhile, Poolman is advising consumers to stay calm and follow a few thoughtful steps in making their insurance claims for property damages incurred in the storm.
Make necessary emergency repairs to prevent any further damages. Covering a broken window on homes or cars, for example, can prevent damage to carpets, curtains and upholstery. Remember to keep receipts and records of any repair you make to prevent further damage.
Determine if the damage is severe and requires immediate repair, or if the repair can wait until after your company assesses the damage. If the damage requires immediate repair, advise your agent as soon as possible, so that your claim can be processed on a priority basis.
Contact your insurance agent. Your agent will notify your company of your claim and provide you with information on how your company will proceed with it.
Inventory all property damage for your insurance company's adjuster, the person the company will likely send to assess your damages. Be sure to identify and save all personal property that was damaged in the storm for the adjuster to look at.
Work with your agent and company to resolve any problems you may have with your claim. If you cannot resolve the problem, contact the Insurance Department at 701.328.2440, or toll free at 800.247.0560 for assistance.
Stay tuned to local television and radio, and keep an eye on the newspapers for updates on insurance issues.
Above all, be patient. A severe storm causing extensive damage and involving many claims will take time to process. Working cooperatively with your agent and company can make processing your claim more efficient.
"Following these steps can greatly increase the efficiency of the claims process," Poolman said.