Tropical Storm Irma – Status and Updates

September 13th, 2017

As of Monday, Irma has officially been downgraded to a tropical storm.

After battering its way up Florida over the weekend, Irma has moved through Georgia and South Carolina, leaving nearly fifteen million without power as flooding and winds continue to produce damage. Currently, officials are predicting that it could take up to ten days for all of the affected areas to have full power restored.

And although the storm is over, it does not mean that the danger has subsided. If you or a loved one is in an area that was affected by Irma, please follow these safety tips as provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to keep safe as rebuilding efforts begin:

  • If the power is out, use flashlights instead of candles. To check power status, please visit: http://www.outagecentral.com/
  • Never use a wet electronic device.
  • Do not use a generator inside, or outside near an open window as it can cause carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Be careful near damaged buildings as flooding can cause them to become structurally unsound. Use caution when returning to a home or business.
  • Do not drive through floodwater, as it can it be deeper than you think. Additionally, downed power lines can also cause floodwater to become electrically charged.
  • Stay clear of fallen power lines. Call the electric company to report them.

What’s next?

When trying to clean up the damage caused by a storm of this magnitude, it can be overwhelming to know where to begin. We have you covered with our dedicated disaster recovery team.

After receiving the official announcement from authorities that it is safe to return and you find you have sustained property damage or business interruption, you should:

  • Call Hays Emergency Claims Center at 612-373-7292 or email Irmaclaims@haycompanies.com
  • Record video or photograph of property damage.
  • Track all expenses you incur to mitigate your loss and continue business.
  • Exercise caution when inspecting damage. Do not try to inspect damaged utilities and appliances; contact a professional to do so.
  • Do what you can to prevent further damage to your property, (e.g., putting a tarp on a damaged roof), as insurance may not cover additional damage that occurs after the storm.
  • Secure Inventory – prior to a storm’s arrival, you should have compiled an inventory of all of your possessions at your home or business. If you did not create one, start as soon as possible.
  • File a Claim Immediately – it is in your best interest to file a claim as quickly as possible. Insurance adjusters may not be able to access the property right away, but it helps insurers to know where to look for damage and how to contact you in the coming weeks.

For additional information on how to stay safe after a hurricane, please visit: https://disastersafety.org/hurricane/after-a-hurricane-safety-tips/

Additional Helpful Links:

National Weather Service: https://alerts.weather.gov/

National Hurricane Center: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/

Public Health Sanitation Division: http://www.wvdhhr.org/phs/disaster/index.asp