Jun 18, 2018
What to Do After a Hurricane or Flood Strikes

{Sponsored} Hurricane season is officially upon us. Everyone knows what to do to batten down the hatches, but if there isn’t a plan in place for after the devastating effects of a hurricane or ensuing flooding, the prep may not have been worth it.

When considering a new flood insurance provider, be sure to get the new plan in place prior to the seasons of the year when floods are more likely in your area. Always be sure your plans are up-to-date prior to hurricane season.

As with any natural disaster, inventory backups need to be stored off-site so they can be accessed if your office is flooded or computer is destroyed. Always take photos of the damage as soon as it is safe to do so. Keep your insurance policy number and agent’s contact information on your person; do not rely upon a mobile device since these devices rely on the power being on to charge or satellite service to be functional to search the internet for these pieces of information.

Floodwaters are dangerous. They obscure debris and can have electricity coursing through them from downed wires, not to mention they can harbor dangerous bacteria, or in some regions, predatory animals. While it is tempting to wade through knee-high water, even those can sweep the strongest people off their feet. In the event of flooding, evacuation plans need to consider the dangers of wading through floodwater.

Call your insurance agent when danger has passed; the faster the recovery starts, the more expedited your claim will be. Report downed power lines immediately and steer clear of them until the power company can restore them.

Always wear protective clothing when beginning cleanup after a hurricane or flood.

Take great care when removing barricades from your greenhouse doors in case large objects have shifted due to the storm. If your plastic is sagging and water is sitting on top of it, try to pump the water out of the slumped area so a deluge does not damage your plants.

Mold is a major secondary danger to any water-based disaster. If it is possible, remove items to dry out in the sun to help prevent mold from developing — this is an important step in recovery.

Before turning on the furnace and any other electrical or gas-powered devices that generate heat (such as hot water heaters), have these devices inspected and the lines cleared by a licensed electrician or the gas company.

If any materials need to be scrapped, take a sample of the material to give to your agent prior to placing the materials in a dumpster.

When extensive repairs are necessary, always get multiple estimates to ensure you are paying a fair price (insurance usually requires this, anyway). Natural disasters bring out unlicensed repair people. Always use a licensed contractor or electrician or plumber to ensure all work is up to code and does not jeopardize your insurance plan’s reimbursement.

© Hortica 2018

For more information, visit the Hortica® website at www.hortica.com.

Hortica® property and casualty coverages are underwritten, and loss control services are provided, by Florists’ Mutual Insurance Company and Florists’ Insurance Company, members of the Sentry Insurance Group. For more information, visit hortica.com. Policies, coverages, benefits and discounts are not available in all states. See policy for complete coverage details.

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