Intensity, Frequency of Recent Natural Disasters Amplifies Property/Casualty Claims….How Will the Insurance Industry Respond?

Guest Post by Scott Markey, Engel Martin & Associates Loss Adjuster 

What an impressive year 2012 was in regards to natural disaster catastrophes. From the 9.2 million acres consumed by wildfires to Hurricane Sandy – 2012 was remarkably memorable and costly.

And with powerful winter weather ahead in 2013, one question being asked is if the amplification of large-scale catastrophes might change the way insurance carriers handle property/casualty claims in the future?

Image representing iPad as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

As state regulators become more involved in post-storm events, insurance carriers will need to respond quicker to large numbers of claims with highly-qualified and trained claims personnel. Technology driven resource tools (i.e. iPads, applications, etc.) will be used by companies to get needed claim expertise, mitigation, and restoration resources involved more rapidly in the claims process and to ultimately get the policyholder’s life back to normal, soon(er)!

As mobile technology advances, policyholders will expect resource tools to be used by their insurance carrier to respond to their claims quicker. So the real challenge insurance carrier’s face is how to properly leverage technology to respond to large-scale events while civil authorities simultaneously try to restore basic services.

Additional challenges facing the insurance industry include:

  • securing and training qualified personnel
  • developing claim tools that will provide information at the adjusters fingertips at the loss scene
  • mobilizing enough staff resources on-scene as quickly as possible following an event.

And don’t forget the importance of weather mapping tools! Weather mapping helps carriers determine loss severity, so they can respond with the right resources for the damages involved. Highly-experienced claim adjusters are needed in hard hit areas, while less experienced adjusters, are qualified to handle claims in areas with moderate to minor damage. Matching the right adjuster with the loss exposure becomes easier if severity mapping is available to carriers immediately after an event hits.

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