Snow Fall and Flooding – Feb 2017

With the rising temperatures, increased rain and melting snow we have had several clients file claims due to melting ice dams on roof edges, collapsed buildings, yard sheds, awnings and patio covers due to weight of snow just to name a few which are all typically covered on your homeowners policy.
Other clients have inquired to see if there is coverage for flooded basements from outside water. Unfortunately a standard homeowner, landlord, condo or renters policy does not cover ANY outside water after it hits the ground or rising water table.
Water is typically covered if it comes from a broken pipe inside the home or a overflowing tub, toilet, etc. If you do get water in your home please call your insurance company and they can let you know if there may be coverage or not.
Everyone in Utah and Idaho right now is on high alert for the possibility of flooding. Several cities have free sandbags and sand that you can place around your home in areas that may flood. If your city has exhausted its sandbag resources you may be able to get some at stores like Home Depot or Lowes.
It would be wise to take a quick look around the outside of your home and see if there is any way to mitigate the chance of water getting into your home. Take special care to move snow away from your home. If you have a sump pump keep an eye on it and consider some type of alternative power source in case the power goes out during times like this. If you don’t frequent your basement in the next few weeks take note to be observant so if something does happen the quicker you can stop the water from spreading the better.
If you do end up with water in your home do the following:
Find the source and try to stop the flow
remove any items from the floor that might get damaged such as computers, wooden furniture, boxes, etc
Take special care if you have electrical power strips on the floor that could create an electrocution hazard if it comes in contact with water
Try to stop the flow going into other rooms to minimize the damage
Contact a flood restoration company as quickly as possible, such as Alpine Cleaning & Restoration 1-855-4Alpine (Again be aware there may be no insurance coverage to pay for their work. It will be at your own expense)
If carpet is damaged tear out any wet pad and throw away and buy new. Don’t attempt to dry it out since it is like a sponge. You will have moisture and mold issues in the future.

Be very aware of any sheetrock that comes in contact. Many times restoration companies will check the walls with a moisture meter. If there is moisture they will cut the drywall 2’ from the floor and clean the 2×4’s etc to eliminate mold, etc.

Bart Caley
Alpine Cleaning & Restoration
Business Development Executive
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