Water In today’s world of extreme weather events, $1 billion has become the new normal for yearly catastrophic losses – most of this is due to water-related damage.4 Ways To Prepare For Water-Related DamageFlooding and related sewer backup damage is costly for homeowners, businesses, municipalities and insurance companies. But, there are steps you can take to help mitigate risk.From ensuring that important documents are not stored in your basement to installing a sump pump, there are many ways to be proactive such as:Keep a current and detailed home inventory. If your neighbourhood is prone to flooding, take precautions throughout your house and property.Assemble a disaster safety kit. Create a 72-hour emergency preparedness plan for your family. Rest Easier. Know What’s Covered. Talk to your insurance representative to make sure you have appropriate coverage. Be aware that:Sudden and accidental bursting of plumbing pipes and appliances is covered by all home insurance policies. However, damage may not be covered when freezing causes the escape of water.Historically in Canada, home insurance policies haven’t covered loss or damage caused by overland flood damage, which occurs when bodies of water, such as rivers, dams overflow onto dry land. This has begun to change. Some Canadian insurers have started to offer overland flood coverage for policyholders but this offering is in its infancy. However if you live in a known flood plain, the coverage may not be available. Water damage from, for example, a burst pipe is covered under a homeowners’ policy. Water that backs up through sewers is covered if you purchased an optional sewer backup endorsement. Speak to your insurance representative to understand your options and coverage limits. Water damage in a basement due to a sewer backup is only covered if specific sewer backup coverage has been purchased. Damage to homes caused by hail or wind is usually covered. This includes damage caused by flying debris or falling branches or trees, or damage caused by water entering through sudden openings caused by wind or hail. If comprehensive or all perils coverage has been purchased, damage to vehicles from wind, hail or water is usually covered. This coverage is not mandatory, so check your policy. In certain circumstances, homeowners who are unable to return home due to insurable damage are entitled to additional living expenses.Tips For Starting The Claim ProcessCall your insurance representative or company. Most insurers have a 24-hour claims service. Be as detailed as possible when providing information.List all damaged or destroyed items. If possible, assemble proofs of purchase, photos, receipts and warranties. Take photos of damage incurred and keep damaged items, unless they pose a health hazard.Keep all receipts related to cleanup and living expenses if you’ve been displaced. Ask your insurance representative about what expenses you may be entitled to and for what period of time.ResourcesProtect Your Home from Sewer Backup: Procedures for Proper Installation of Backwater ValvesFocus on Backwater Valves (PDF) Damage to your CarIn times of crisis, slowing down is often the best approach. If you’ve just been in a collision, are a victim of theft, or have weather related damage, there are things you can do to manage the situation Damage to your HomeFrom floods to fires to earthquakes, severe weather can damage your home. If you’re in a crisis situation that could affect the structure of your home or your own health, keep calm and seek alternate shelter immediately. Damage to your BusinessA crisis can happen at any time, threatening an organization in a multitude of tangible and intangible ways. Beware of Flooded VehiclesA severe weather event such as a heavy rainfall can leave a wide trail of destruction in its wake including flooded basements, washed out roads, communities under water and scores of flooded vehicles. Water Damage is on the rise: Are you protectedCanada’s increasingly severe weather means that basement flooding and water damage are becoming more common. Learn how to protect your home and your property. Related ServicesMunicipal Risk Assessment ToolExtreme weather events that used to happen every 40 years now occur every 6 years. IBC is piloting ground-breaking technology – a tool known as MRAT – to help communities reduce flooding caused by sewer backups. Useful LinksFlood Ready - Canada.caLearn about floods, know the risks and be a part of the solution. Talk to your insurer about your coverage, find out about programs and resources available in your community, and plan home projects that can help protect your property.Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction - Protect Your Home from Sewer BackupProcedures for Proper Installation of Backwater Valves. This website provides information relevant to homes serviced by underground, public sewer systems, typically located in urban areas.Crisis Management - Auto InsuranceIn times of crisis, slowing down is often the best approach. A crisis can be weather related. Whether your vehicle has been damaged by water, wind, fire, ice or an earthquake, make sure you know what to do in the event of an emergencyCrisis Management - Home InsuranceFrom floods to fires to earthquakes, severe weather can damage your home. A home robbery or attempted break-in can put you, your family and your property, at risk. If you’re in a crisis situation that could affect the structure of your home or your own health, keep calm and seek alternate shelter immediately. Crisis Management - Business InsuranceA crisis can happen at any time, threatening an organization in a multitude of tangible and intangible ways. Following best practices in risk management – including creating a business continuity plan – can mean the difference between recovery and bankruptcy. Disaster Safety KitWhen a natural disaster occurs, it can take first responders as long as 72 hours to reach people in non-critical situations.