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Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Raising Questions About Rising Water

Recent weather conditions across the U.S. have inspired us to write a blog about what YOU should do in the event of flooding in our area. With all of this heavy rainfall lately, the threat of flood in our area is rising as well as the water! We would like to share some tips with you on what you can do to help ease your circumstances in the event of a flood.

When you know flooding is a possibility, take the following steps to reduce your risk of loss:

Protect your property from rising water damage:
      Use sandbags to protect openings such as exterior doors
      Park vehicles in high areas
      Raise the valuables you can not remove from your home setting them on higher items such as blocks and

      Remove any valuables you are able to

Evacuate low lying areas and take your pets if able

Always carry all of your important documents with you when evacuating, especially your insurance policies. We also recommend you keep additional copies in a safety deposit box or a copy on your computer

Stay tuned to TV & radio stations reporting on conditions in your area, and do not return to your area until you have verified there are no hazardous threats remaining

Never assume that a water-damaged house is safe. Going into a building that has been flooded, even after the water is gone, can present a wide variety of hazards that can cause injury, illness or even death. Do not allow children in the home after the flood or while it is being cleaned, inspected or repaired.

When you are facing flood damage to your property, take the following steps to reduce hazardous risks to your health and property:
Do not enter a flooded or wet building if the power is on. If any electrical circuits have gotten wet, get the power turned off at the main breaker or fuse box and leave it off until the electrical wiring or equipment has been inspected and repaired by a licensed electrician and approved by your local building inspector.

Do not enter a building if the framing or foundation is damaged. Look carefully before you enter. Leave immediately if shifting or unusual noises signal a possible collapse of the building. Contact your local building inspector for a safety inspection.

Remember, dangerous materials that might be found in flooded homes include pesticides, fuel oil, gasoline, chemicals and other substances that might have been brought in or spilled by the flood. If possible, wear Personal Protective Equipment such as gloves, boots and a mask when entering a flooded home.

Also remember, dangerous materials are not the only health threat in a flooded home. Bacteria, viruses, molds and mildew can cause illness when you breathe them in or take them into your body through your mouth or through a cut in the skin. Bacteria or viruses may be left indoors by floodwater, while mold and mildew may grow indoors after the floodwater has receded. This is another reason you should wear Personal Protective Equipment when entering a flooded home.

Move & act slowly in a flood damaged home. Assess each area you move to very carefully. Falling objects, broken or damaged building components and slick surfaces can cause injuries, broken bones, and cuts.

When making a flood insurance claim, after alerting your insurance agent -take the following steps to help ease the process:

 
 
*Take necessary steps to prevent your property from further damage, such as temporary repairs like boarding windows or doors and cutting off electricity (until you can have a profession come to properly repair damage)

Set aside damaged property for further inspection by your insurance adjuster, making sure to not dispose of anything unless required by law.

• Thoroughly document any property that must be disposed of and take as many photos as possible

Take pictures of the loss and all property damaged.

Compile a list of all areas of structure damage and all items damaged.

• Track all claim-related expenses and keep copies of all receipts

Most importantly, as your Trusted Choice Insurance Agent, SouthGroup Insurance Gulf Coast wants you to know you can call on us with your questions or concerns seeking more helpful advice or answers to your pressing insurance questions. A full insurance review is always your best bet to make sure you have all of the adequate coverage for your personal insurance needs. Remember, we offer a personalized insurance review to anyone who is interested at no charge – just visit any one of our 3 convenient coastal locations!

We are your LOCAL Trusted Choice Advisors, SouthGroup-Gulf Coast http://www.southgroupgulfcoast.com / ,
SALES AND SERVICE AGENTS: Angelyn Treutel Zeringue, Tammy Garfield, Tammy Hogue, Brittany Jones, Denise Russell, Melissa Moran, Alex Treutel, Susan Monti, Anne Gillam, Ashlie Moody, Michael Reso, Mark Strickland, and Whitney Zimmerman at SouthGroup Gulf Coast. You can reach us by snail-mail or in person: 412 Hwy 90, Suite 6, Bay St Louis MS 39520, email:
atreutel@southgroup.net , phone: 228-466-4498 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 228-466-4498 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting , fax:888-415-8922, FaceBook www.facebook.com/southgroup.gulfcoast, or Twitter www.twitter.com/atreutel !

We have 3 Gulf Coast locations to serve you - 2505 Pass Road - Biloxi, 5400 Indian Hill-Diamondhead, and 412 Hwy 90 Ste 6-Bay Saint Louis, MS. We write coverage in 40 different states and can assist you with Mississippi insurance, Louisiana insurance, and Alabama insurance and many other states. Insurance is stressful, but we make saving easy.  We help you save money on insurance!
Thanks to Susan Monti for her words of wisdom!