EDMONTON, June 20, 2013 /CNW/ - With reports of heavy rainfall and
overland flooding in several southern Alberta communities, Insurance
Bureau of Canada (IBC) reminds homeowners to take measures to protect
themselves and their belongings. IBC's Consumer Information Centre in
Alberta, 1-800-377-6378 is available to answer any insurance questions consumers may have.
"First and foremost, we encourage all individuals in danger of flooding
to take the proper measures to protect themselves and their loved
ones," said Bill Adams, VP, Western and Pacific Region, Insurance
Bureau of Canada. "In addition, we urge homeowners to take preventative
action to minimize their losses."
He added: "It's important to take preventative action against flooding
because damage caused by overland flooding is not covered by home
insurance policies anywhere in Canada."
The purpose of insurance is to spread risk amongst many policyholders.
But overland flooding is a risk for only a small percentage of the
population - that is, those who live in a flood plain or close to
rivers or lakes. Since most homeowners are not exposed to the risk,
they would not share in the cost to be protected against the risk and,
consequently providing flood insurance would be unaffordable for the
homeowners who might need it.
Adams added: "However, some damage may be the result of sewer back-up.
Coverage for this type of damage is available, but must be purchased as
an add-on to a home insurance policy."
IBC offers tips for protecting belongings, and information about
insurance for water damage.
IBC recommends these helpful tips to protect your home:
Move valuable items from the basement to upper floors. Do not stack wet
items on dry items just to get them off the floor.
Dry the flooded area within a few days 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
If the water is from a freshwater source, quickly retrieve from the
flooded area any valuables. If the flood source originates from the
septic system, avoid contact with the water and do not
cross-contaminate unaffected areas by walking in and out of the
Sudden and accidental bursting of plumbing pipes and appliances is
covered by home insurance policies. However, damage may not be covered
when freezing causes the escape of water.
Water damage in a basement due to a sewer backup is only covered if
specific sewer backup coverage has been purchased.
In certain circumstances, homeowners who are unable to return home due
to insurable damage are entitled to additional living expenses (this
coverage is not available if an evacuation happened due to overland
Damage to vehicles from water is usually covered on an auto insurance
policy if comprehensive or all perils coverage has been purchased. This
coverage is not mandatory, so check your policy.
Overland flooding resulting in water overflowing onto dry land and
causing damage is not covered in home insurance policies in Canada.
(Speak to your insurance representative for more information on how you
can protect your home).
Consumers looking for answers on these issues or requiring assistance
with their insurance questions, please call our Consumer Information
Centre at 1-800-377-6378
For more information on protecting yourself from severe weather visit ibc.ca
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 approximately 90% of the private property
and casualty insurance market in Canada. The P&C insurance industry
employs 118,600 Canadians, pays more than $7 billion in taxes to the
federal, provincial and municipal governments, and has a total premium
base of $46 billion.
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