TORONTO, May 8, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - The Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction (ICLR) in partnership with Desjardins retrofitted a Quebec home to reduce the impact of winter storms and
earthquakes. As part of the insurance industry's ongoing commitment to
educate Canadian homeowners about disaster safety, ICLR has once again
chosen Emergency Preparedness Week (May 5-11) to unveil its latest home
retrofit project, this time in Quebec City, Quebec.
Glenn McGillivray, Managing Director of ICLR and Jocelyn Laflamme,
Vice-president of Ratemaking and Business Solutions from Desjardins
Insurance, conducted a media tour of the home. Says McGillivray:
"Actions taken to make a home more resilient to natural catastrophes
should reflect local hazard risk. Quebec represents one of three of the
most seismically active areas in Canada. Additionally, the region is
regularly hit with several severe winter storms every year. Homeowners
can prepare now for hazards that will inevitably strike in the future."
The Quebec home retrofit includes:
Installing snow melt cables on roof edges and gutters to prevent the
formation of ice dams
Applying safety and security film to windows
Installing an electric surge protection system
Installing an emergency generator with propane fuel tank
Building a secure framing around the propane tank
Installing a fire extinguisher
Installing insulation around the main door
Securing the hot water tank
Securing cabinet doors
Installing armoured supply hoses on the washing machine.
According to Natural Resources Canada, approximately 450 earthquakes
occur in eastern Canada each year. Of this number, an average of four
will exceed magnitude 4. There are two main earthquake seismic zones in
the province of Quebec. The Western Quebec Seismic Zone is made up of a
large area that encompasses the Ottawa Valley from Montreal to
Temiscamingue, as well as the Laurentians and Eastern Ontario. The
urban areas of Montreal, Ottawa-Hull and Cornwall are located in this
zone. The Charlevoix Seismic Zone, located approximately 100 km
downstream from Quebec City, is the most seismically active region of
Quebec winters are often cold, windy and snowy with average highs of -5
to -8 °C and lows of -13 to -18 °C. Quebec City is one of the snowiest
cities in Canada. On average, it receives 316 centimetres of snowfall
each year. However, Quebec City experienced the heaviest snowfall on
record in 1970-71 when it received 460 centimetres of snow. That record
held until 2007-08, when the city was hit with just over 500
centimetres of snow. 'Big' snowstorms of over ten centimetres a day
occur, on average, nine times per year.
According to McGillivray: "We can prevent natural hazards from becoming
disasters if people undertake simple, appropriate preventative measures
beforehand. Such actions and measures are affordable and take little
time to do. That's what we want to demonstrate today in this home."
"At Desjardins, we're extremely happy to be involved in this
initiative," notes Sylvie Paquette, President of Desjardins General
Insurance Group, a member of ICLR. "ICLR's prevention work and annual
awareness campaigns fit perfectly with our prevention message. We know
that there are ways to significantly reduce the impacts of Mother
Nature's whims on our homes. Often, when it comes to earthquakes,
snowstorms, high winds, and similar events, we can take proactive
measures to protect our property. ICLR's projects prove just that, and
we want to help spread the word."
This is the eleventh year that Canada's insurers, through ICLR, have
showcased a retrofitted home as part of Emergency Preparedness Week.
The Institute has also retrofitted a community health centre, and has
retrofitted child care centres across Canada as part of its "Protecting
our Kids from Disasters" program.
Established in 1998 by Canada's property and casualty insurers, ICLR is
an independent, not-for-profit research institute based in Toronto and
at the University of Western Ontario in London, Canada. ICLR is a
centre of excellence for disaster loss prevention research and
education. ICLR's research staff is internationally recognized for
pioneering work in a number of fields including wind and seismic
engineering, atmospheric sciences, water resources engineering and
economics. Multi-disciplined research is a foundation for ICLR's work
to build communities more resilient to disasters.
A subsidiary of Desjardins Group, Desjardins General Insurance Group provides home and auto insurance to
consumers across the country and commercial insurance to businesses in
Quebec. With 3,700 employees across Canada, a portfolio of more than
2.1 million policies in force, gross written premiums of $2.0 billion
and assets of over $4.3 billion, DGIG ranks among the largest P&C
insurers in Canada.
SOURCE: Desjardins General Insurance
For further information:
Glenn McGillivray, Managing Director, ICLR
Tel. 416-364-8677, ext. 3212
Source (for journalists only):
Tel. 514-281-7000 or 1-866-866-7000, ext. 7646