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In the Aftermath of a Disaster – Do you Act or React?

A disaster almost always comes announced and it can strike anyone. This holds true for both natural and man-made disasters. And in most cases, it strikes in a manner that leaves those impacted traumatized and shaken. But the impact and magnitude of a disaster largely depends on whether we act or simply react to the series of events that take place both before and in the aftermath of a disaster. So a good question to ask is – do you act or react when disaster strikes?

What is your First Response?

Whether you are looking at fire, flooding or an earthquake or you are looking at damage from faulty plumbing, electrical fire, or regular wear and tear – in each of these instances what is your first response?

Protecting life is always the first priority quickly followed by protecting property. You do have medical and life insurance to deal with any risk to life. You also have property insurance to secure your property. So for most people, the first response is always to reach out to their insurance company. However, here is some sound advice. Before you call in your insurance company, it might actually benefit you largely to call a restoration company. Why? Well, because the restoration company will not only respond immediately, but they can also provide you with an accurate assessment and estimate for the damage.

Furthermore, they can quickly swing into action and start the restoration process so the damage can be effectively contained and treated. This places you on a better standing with your insurance company because you were proactive about dealing with the damage and your numbers are backed by professional assessment. Most restoration companies will also work with you to ensure your insurance paperwork is up to the mark.

Call your Insurance Guys

While it is definitely prudent to call a restoration company prior to reaching out to your insurance company, your next step should be to call in your insurance company. You have documented the damage and prepared an estimate and also started on the restoration work. And when claims are backed by professional assessment, the insurance company will find it very difficult to question your claims. It also gives them no space for any delay in dealing with your claims.

These actions while crucial are more reactionary in nature anytime you are faced with disaster. Here are actions that you can take to be more proactive about protecting life and property anytime disaster strikes.

Prevention is better than Cure

This proverb can literally be applied to anything we do in our lives. Disaster management included. Instead of reacting to disaster, do the following to limit the damage;

  • Ensure your insurance is up to date.
  • Carry out regular maintenance of your property.
  • Have an escape plan in place to avoid danger to life during a fire or flooding.
  • Use technology such as alarms and or smart home monitoring systems that can be managed and monitored even when you are out of your home.
  • Include a restoration company in your list of important numbers to call anytime disaster strikes.
  • Carry out simply DIY damage control such as switching off the mains (water and electricity).
  • If possible, salvage what can be saved and move other items for disposal.
  • Work closely with your restoration technicians and follow their advice to ensure the work happens quickly and also to prevent any damage in the future.

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