Fires damage claims are a large part of insurance companies’ business. The fires do not always burn everything. In most cases, the fire is put out by the fire department or sprinkler system, but smoke fills up the entire business away from the fire scene. Smoke residue and/or odor are responsible for a large portion of salvage merchandise. Furnace backups also cause similar smoke damage to merchandise.
Water damage claims are also common. This can be from the fire hoses and sprinkler systems from fires. Other water sources are broken sprinkler systems, leaks in roofs due to rain, broken water systems located in upper floors of buildings raining down, floods and more. Water heater breaks/leaks are also a common occurrence.
Transit damage claims occur with trucking companies. Truck accidents cause damage from shifting loads, overturned trailers, and broken liquids inside trailers. Trucks also ship perishables, which need refrigeration and/or freezing temperatures. Sometimes, commodities will be rejected if the cargo is off of the required shipping temperature by two or three degrees. The product is still totally safe for consumption, but the consignee does not want the shipment.
Theft recovery claims come from stolen items. The police recover a stolen item(s) and the insurer has paid the original owner a claim settlement. The insurance company owns the rights to the item and it is sold. Sometimes, there is no damage at all and is new merchandise. Tools and electronics are a common theft recovery salvage item.
Third party liability claims happen when someone else causes damage. Ever see a car drive through a store window? Glass shatters and goes everywhere. Smoke bombs flying into stores during a riot cause odor damage to the merchandise. Someone knocks over a display, and like dominos, causes a chain reaction. “Oops!” is usually covered.
Vandalism claims unfortunately occur as well. Ever see news reports of some activist trashing a site with everything being broken, overturned, spray painted or beaten? It is a fact of life.
Windstorms. The roofs get blown off during torrential rain. Trees fall onto roofs breaking sprinkler systems and/or merchandise underneath.
Floods. Water rises and causes havoc with everything in its path.
Earthquakes happen. Shake, rattle and roll. Falling and breaking items of all types and sizes. Roofs falling, water pipes breaking, gas leaks causing fires, breaks in electricity to coolers & freezers cause thawing.
Contamination. Occasionally, during a processing operation, a foreign substance enters the mix. This can be as simple as a mislabeled bag of ingredients in food production, to a machine, which has malfunctioned causing damage. Some contaminates are only bad taste and not harmful, while others are taken to the dump.