TORONTO, July 9, 2013 /CNW/ - Heavy rains across the Greater Toronto
Area in the last 24 hours have resulted in localized flooding, many
flooded basements and road closures. Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC)
reminds people that in the event of a flood, safety must be your main
Ralph Palumbo, IBC's vice president, Ontario region, adds, "If your home
was flooded, turn off electrical breakers for areas that have suffered
water damage, but only if it is safe to do so." He went on to say,
"Sewer backup coverage is usually available and can be purchased as an
add-on to policies. Consumers should be calling their insurance
representative to report their claims and start the clean-up process.
Reach out to neighbours, particularly elderly and those needing
assistance. Insurers are actively responding to customers to try to get
life back to normal as soon as possible."
Some general tips if you have experienced flooding:
Do not stack wet items on dry items just to get them off the floor. Move
valuable items to higher ground and out of your basement if safe to do
Dry the flooded area as soon as possible to prevent mould growth.
Industrial-sized air dryers are often used in these instances and are
typically available for purchase or rent at one of the major hardware
A primer on different types of water damage and coverage:
Sewer backup normally occurs when drains become blocked (e.g. by debris
or overflow after heavy rain) and the water enters your home. Sewer
backup coverage is normally available for residential policies.
Sewer backup coverage is not automatically included in all home
insurance policies. It is, however, offered as optional coverage that
you can purchase. This type of coverage is useful if your area has
combined storm and sanitary sewers. Check your policy and talk to your
insurance representative to find out if you're covered.
Overland flood damage usually occurs when water enters your home because
bodies of water such as rivers, streams, and lakes overflow and cover
normally dry land. Generally, a residential insurance policy does not
cover overland flooding.
Storm damage normally occurs when rainwater enters your home through an
opening created by a storm (e.g. after the roof or a window is
damaged). Storm damage is covered by residential insurance policies,
but it is important to note that most policies exclude damage caused if
either a window or door is left open, or the building is in poor
Residential insurance is an extremely competitive industry. The types of
coverage offered and the specific wordings used in policies vary from
company to company, as policies are tailored to best suit the needs of
individual customers. It is important to carefully read the "terms and
conditions" of an insurance policy. If you have questions, you are
advised to contact your insurance representative as soon as possible.
In an average year the Canadian insurance industry pays approximately
$1.7 billion in claims due to water damage. For more information,
homeowners can also call the Insurance Bureau of Canada Consumer Information Centre at
About Insurance Bureau of Canada
Insurance Bureau of Canada is the national industry association
representing Canada's private home, car and business insurers. Its
member companies represent 90% of the property and casualty (P&C)
insurance market in Canada. The P&C insurance industry employs over
118,600 Canadians, pays more than $7 billion in taxes to the federal,
provincial and municipal governments, and has a total premium base of
To view media releases and other information, visit the media section of
IBC's website at www.ibc.ca. Follow IBC on Twitter @InsuranceBureau or like us on Facebook.
If you require more information, IBC spokespeople are available to
discuss the details in this media release.
SOURCE: INSURANCE BUREAU OF CANADA
For further information:
To schedule an interview, please contact:
Media Relations Officer
Insurance Bureau of Canada
416-362-2031 x 4312