CAT season 2022: preparing our team and communities

May 23, 2022

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By Beau Bishop, senior vice president, catastrophe operations, Danny Miller, executive vice president, loss adjustment property and Gail Oliver, senior vice president, sales

Recent years have produced above-average storm seasons and, at the earliest estimation, 2022 is expected to continue this trend.

Wildfires, hurricanes, earthquakes, and tornadoes are difficult for everyone involved — especially those whose homes and businesses may be damaged or destroyed altogether. When disaster strikes, getting the right catastrophe solutions to the right places quickly are essential.

One of the challenges unique to CAT adjusting is the vast range of needs necessary to handle different types of damage. One claim may need a loss adjuster, forensic accountant, and fire expert while another may require the services of roofing contractors and structural engineers. Another challenge can be the number of those who need support. Understanding the process and having the right resources ensures the hundreds (potentially thousands) of people filing claims at one time are taken care of.

Preparing our team

During CAT events, our teams of adjusters, contractors and experts deploy at a moment’s notice to help the insured and their communities start the rebuilding process quickly. When you have resources prepared, turnaround time is fast — leading to a more positive outcome. Australia’s wildfire epicenter is a strong example, as our CAT adjusters quickly deployed to assist insurance companies and the local insured population.

As satellite technology and forecasts improve, we can utilize this detailed information to anticipate where weather patterns around the world may cause destruction. Understanding quick shifts in winds that change the movement of wildfires or global warming effects on coastal floods can be essential to timely and appropriate responses with skilled adjusters and specialists. Utilizing data from NOAA and drone technology are additional resources that we use to consider the impact of catastrophic events.

On the ground, after more than two years navigating COVID, field adjusting technology has improved dramatically. With the assistance of various technology, adjusters can move faster, with more streamlined information collection, to process claims quickly during a disaster. By responding swiftly, contractors can move in quickly to mitigate the damage and make plans to rebuild.

Preparing the community

In the event of a partial or total loss, where a property’s conditions are uninhabitable, it’s important to work with the community to ensure people are safe. Sedgwick’s temporary housing team can provide flexible, short-term accommodations until an individual’s home is safe to occupy. This allows the insured to focus on what matters most to them – their safety and recovery after a loss – while staying in their community.

Of course, pre-loss planning can lead to a better post-loss experience. Knowing your risk, securing a backup location, creating a communication plan, and reviewing your coverage are great places to start. Together, these layers of preparation and action can help communities build back stronger following a CAT event. Whether there are 10,000 smaller claims or 500 large-scale complex losses, Sedgwick’s global team is prepared to work through the challenges and handle any loss situation, anywhere.

Tags: Adjusting, CAT Claim, Cat Insights, CAT response, Catastrophe, Catastrophe prevention, catastrophic event, Catostrophic event, field loss adjusting, Property, Property claims, Property damage, Property loss, storm damage, storms, temporary housing, View on property