Property Damage from Storm Expected to be in Millions

Property Damage from Storm Expected to be in Millions

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Jed Boal ReportingThe recent storm caused a lot of damage to our cars and homes and everyone from insurance companies to clean-up crews have been busy adding up and cleaning up the mess.

It's too early to put a price tag on the property damage from the storm, but conservatively insurance professionals say it will be several million dollars or more along the Wasatch Front.

Michelle Liechty is dealing with pretty typical damage from the storm. Heavy snow dropped a big branch from a neighbor's tree on her mother's fence.

Michelle Liechty, Homeowner: “The disaster is mainly it's just an old old fence, an 80 or 90 year old fence. It's a historical area so we'll have to comply with all the rules when we fix it."

Across the state hundreds of people filed insurance claims on cars and homes damaged by the snow storm. State Farm, which does a quarter of the business in the state, had 130 claims, 40-percent more than it would expect on a Monday. Still, not a big number despite the severity of the storm.

Rick McEuen, Claims Section Manager: “I think you can attribute a lot of that to the fact that people are home for the holidays and not out on the roads."

As clean-up continues many people are just getting to the downed trees, collapsed patio roofs and flooding damage from frozen pipes.

Rick McEuen, Claims Section Manager: “I'm actually surprised the numbers aren't larger. Probably because people are home and they can catch the damage before it gets large."

If the temperatures rise, the number of claims may too. As snow melts on our roofs, ice dams that form around the eaves can trap the water. If the water backs up under the shingles it can leak inside and spot or soak your walls and ceilings. Those claims and others are still to come.

Rick McEuen, Claims Section Manager: “If we get another storm Friday you could see some additional collapses of patios from more snow on top."

Frozen pipes can also be a problem for people who lose power and their heating source. Keep the water dripping to prevent frozen pipes in a cold house and turn off the water main, if the pipes are already frozen.

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