The weather has definitely shifted. Winter is upon us, or very nearly. What does that mean for you? Cold weather? Snow? Ice? Few people want to think about that. Unfortunately, think about it you must, because, along with the cold weather, winter business insurance claims tend to increase. Are you covered?
Winter after winter, insurance claims related to cold weather rears their ugly heads. Is there a way to prevent them? What causes so many insurance claims?
Let’s look at the best way to avoid some of the most common business insurance claims in winter.
Winter Motor Vehicle Collisions – Avoid Them
You should have a business auto policy in place if you and/or your employees use company/personal vehicles for business. There are numerous road hazards during winter, and sometimes accidents are unavoidable.
Slips And Falls – Stop Them Before They Start
Winter means slippery conditions. You have to protect your employees and your client from slips and falls. For any injury they sustain in an incident such as this, you can be held liable. This could mean a workers’ compensation claim or a personal injury claim against you.
Winter Fires – Prevent Them
Never assume that, just because it’s cold, fires won’t start. Quite the contrary, in fact. During the winter months, property fires increase with heating problems/equipment being a significant cause. Follow all instructions when using mobile heating equipment and/or space heaters. Allow plenty of space between heating systems and flammable items like clothing, rugs, curtains, and furniture.
If you decorate for the holidays, check on wiring to make sure there is no threat of an electrical fire.
Stop Damage from Falling Trees
Snow is heavy. When branches freeze, and ice forms, the problem of falling branches arises. Around the exterior of your business, make sure that trees are regularly inspected. Before winter hits, have any problematic branches removed by a tree service.
Watch for tree rot, as well. An entire rotted tree can come down, as opposed to just one branch. Watch for cracked and leaning tree trunks, bark fungus, dead branches, bark cracks, and holes.
Wind and Hail Damage – How to Avoid It
Your property should be inspected and secured to prepare for wind and hail. Repair any missing or loose shutters, gutters, and shingles. From outdoor areas around your building, remove loose items including display items, landscaping tools, garden decor, planters, furniture, etc.
Roof Collapses – Nobody Wants That
At all costs, roof collapses must be avoided. Few people understand how heavy snow can be. After several weeks of piling up, accumulated snow puts undue stress on your roof. To ensure structural integrity, make sure that any damaged areas are replaced and repaired. Make sure a health check is done regularly on your roof by a qualified inspector.
To prevent excess weight, clear off snow whenever possible or as needed.
Frozen Pipes – Prevented Them
In many parts of the United States, frozen pipes are simply a fact of winter. They don’t have to be where your business is concerned. You could experience severe water damage if frozen pipes burst. By keeping your business location warm enough, you can avoid frozen pipes. Make sure a temperature of 65° or more is maintained, even if the business isn’t occurring in the building at the time.
Particularly in attics, garages, and basements – even more so if they’re unheated – heavily insulate pipes.
Ice Dam Damage – Preventing It
In best case scenario, you can prevent damage from ice dams. If ice dams do form, you have to know how to remove them.
For any signs of ice dams forming and accumulating water, keep an eye on your gutters and your roof during icy and snowy weather. To prevent damage, so water doesn’t accumulate, correct blockages and clear snow.
Remove ice dams as soon as possible if you notice them on the property where your business resides. For ice dam clearing, one of the most effective ways is to use calcium chloride ice melter. So as not to damage your roof, never use sodium chloride or rock salt.
The Best Way To Prepare For a Business Insurance Claim, Talk To Stone Claims Group
Truth be told, winter, spring, summer, and fall, we, at Stone Claims Group, apply unmatched expertise in everything we do. To propel your claim in the right direction, we use our combined talents. We offer attention to detail, multiple perspectives and strategies, and provide continuous communication. Our philosophy: By implementing ever-expanding investigative tools, constantly push claims investigation to new limits.
Maximize your claim recovery with Stone Claims Group.