Growing up in a family of contractors, I can remember my mother being “on call” when there was a storm brewing. She would answer the twenty-four-hour hotline and send her crews on emergency board-up calls from natural disasters like storms, fallen trees, wind, fires, tornados, etc.
Fortunately, we live in Michigan, where we seem to avoid the more treacherous disasters like earthquakes, hurricanes, mudslides, and until recently, wildfires. Even though our air quality has been significantly affected because of Canada’s recent wildfires, fortunately, to date, the fires have not spread to southeast Michigan.
However “protected” we may feel in Michigan, we are not free of storms, tornadoes, fires, heavy snow, and floods.
For example, if a heavy snowfall causes your roof to cave in, you will need a professional restoration company. They’re there to help navigate the restoration process and the complex insurance claims process, as well as help you and your family rise above the unexpected.
In the Midwest, there are a few prominent types of disaster restoration:
- Fire and smoke restoration
- Water and flood restoration
- Wind and storm restoration
- Mold remediation
My family’s general contracting business did a lot of fire and smoke restoration jobs. Sometimes my mother would go help her crews to make some extra money, and she would come home covered in smoke and soot. Every once in a while, the customers would give her brand-new items that still worked but were covered in smoke. We did not care – we just cleaned them up, and they looked and worked like brand new!
What are the 4 phases of disaster relief?
These common elements allow you to prepare for and protect yourself and your animals from disaster. Emergency managers consider disasters recurring events with four phases: Mitigation, Preparedness, Response, and Recovery.
Although if you are currently going through or have been through a natural disaster that caused destruction to your home, the first step in that process would be “response.” Hopefully, if you have hired a professional restoration company, they will go through the other steps as well to put the proper resolution into place for potential future incidences.
It is noteworthy to mention that these four phases are interconnected and often overlap. Each phase builds upon the previous one and the lessons learned from previous disasters. Effective disaster management requires comprehensive planning, collaboration across multiple sectors, and continuous improvement based on past experiences. They are as follows:
Mitigation refers to the efforts to reduce the risk and impact of disasters. It involves implementing long-term strategies to prevent or minimize the effects of future disasters. Examples of mitigation measures include constructing infrastructure resistant to earthquakes, floodplain zoning, building codes, and public education campaigns. For instance, a community at risk of floods may build levees or create buffer zones to absorb excess water, reducing the potential damage.
Preparedness involves developing plans, policies, and procedures to respond to a disaster effectively. It includes creating emergency response plans, conducting training, organizing drills, and stockpiling necessary resources. For example, a government agency may establish communication protocols and evacuation routes, while individuals might have emergency supply kits and family communication plans in place.
The response phase takes place immediately after a disaster occurs. It focuses on addressing the immediate needs of affected individuals and communities. Key activities include search and rescue operations, providing emergency medical care, sheltering, and distributing essential supplies like food, water, and medicine.
Response also involves coordinating efforts among various response agencies and organizations to ensure an efficient and effective response. For instance, in the case of a hurricane, response efforts may involve deploying emergency personnel, setting up temporary shelters, and delivering relief supplies to affected areas.
The recovery phase involves long-term efforts to rebuild and restore affected communities after a disaster. It aims to restore normalcy, rehabilitate infrastructure, and help individuals and communities recover physically, emotionally, and economically.
Recovery activities can include repairing damaged buildings, assisting in reopening businesses, providing financial assistance, and offering counseling or mental health support. For example, recovery efforts might involve rebuilding homes, repairing roads, and providing financial aid to affected families after an earthquake.
What does insurance cover in a storm?
In the event of a storm, insurance coverage can play a significant role in helping individuals recover from the damage caused. While the specific coverage may vary depending on the type of policy and insurance provider, several common areas are typically covered in a storm.
- Fallen trees
Homeowners’ insurance typically covers wind damage. Coverage also usually includes damage from hail, wind-driven rain, or snow that gets inside the home when a roof or wall is damaged due to wind.
Since our family business was general contracting, we responded to many different disasters and had crews to fulfill the needs of each occurrence. For example, if the roof caved in because of a fallen tree, we sent our crew of roofers. Back then, we also had relationships with insurance companies that would call us on behalf of their customers’ needs.
Those days are long gone, as too many people abused the referral system. That’s ok, it opened the door to respectable businesses to earn the work on their own merit, which they did, and as a result, they flourished.
Insurance coverage for storm-related damages may also extend to personal belongings within the property. Contents coverage, which is typically included in homeowners’ insurance, can help replace or repair damaged personal belongings such as furniture, electronics, and appliances. This coverage may include compensation for damage caused by wind, hail, or other storm-related factors.
It’s imperative for you to review and understand the terms and limitations of the insurance policy to know what is specifically covered in the event of a storm. Private insurance adjusters are an excellent way to ensure you are receiving all the benefits due according to your policy.
Depending on the policy and insurance provider, certain exclusions and limitations may apply. For instance, some policies may not cover damages caused by flooding or earthquakes, commonly associated with severe storms.
Types of disaster recovery solutions
In conclusion, disaster recovery solutions, such as fire and smoke restoration, water and flood restoration, wind and storm restoration, and mold remediation, are crucial in helping individuals and communities recover from disasters. Be sure to do your due diligence and hire a reputable, professional company.
Understanding the four phases of disaster relief and reviewing insurance coverage can also aid in the recovery process. And having someone as an expert on your side can make a world of difference.