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Last Post 04/04/2008 11:06 AM by  Ray Hall
Vehicle Damage Claims and odd wind claims
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Ray Hall
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03/08/2008 4:17 PM

    Was thinking about my old bud John G today when he called me when he was working in Los Angeles on the fire before the last fire. John had just purchase a new lap top and it was sitting on the right front seat when he ran into the rear of another car and the lap top flew into the firewall and broke the open screen off on the plastic-metal case.. and it cost more to replace than to repair, about $2,000.00. Being an old auto adjuster I advised him to turn  his puter claim to his Homeowners carrier as a total loss. He called in a couple of days later and said it was turned down as vehicle damage means " a vehicle must strike property". He appointed me as his appraiser under the provisions and advised our contention was "property stuck a vehicle". The carrier never appointed an appraiser and sent the check with out going to appraisal. I did not charge John and have fond memories like this one of my dear friend who passed on to a better place in December 2005.

    I was an IA working a regular claim for the Farm. The catastrophe adjuster was on a storm and turned in an odd wind claim on his Homeowners in Houston. Facts. A nice spring day and Mrs. had the back door and front door letting the nice dry spring air circulate through the house. The back door blew shut and this caused the front door to slam with such force that a wrought iron and glass rack fell over and was destroyed on the stone floor. This was also a $2,000.00 loss.

    OK lets keep the ball rolling gang.

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    BobH
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    03/09/2008 12:54 AM
    Vehicle Loss
    I handled an 18 wheeler accident north of Los Angeles with a 60 foot trailer full of "bruised tomatoes". This is one of those where they call you in the middle of the night, the driver is waiting by the side of the truck for an adjuster to show up.

    Part of the assignment was to sell salvage. I found a place that would pay us 25 cents on the dollar to use the damaged tomatoes for ketchup.

    Homeowners Loss
    Something shorted out - sparked inside this guy's refrigerator and somehow there was an EXPLOSION. Never saw one like this before, or after. They didn't show me the forensic engineers report - my file closed way before he came up with his findings. Maybe freon can explode, I don't know - but this homeowner had a "puffed out" refrigerator, and the door flew open, and across the ceiling, living room, and dining room was mustard, ketchup, potato salad, mayo, you name it. Big streaks of food emanating from the point of origin. No arrows needed on the photos.
    Bob H
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    Ray Hall
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    03/09/2008 10:38 AM

    Vehicle Loss . 18 wheelers loaded with wheat headed to the port of Houston from the wheat states would crash or overturn in the Houston Area. The on scene adjuster would have the number of the salvor with him, who would come out with a vacum machine and another truck to put the spilled wheat and finish the haul. They would only loose about 25% of the load if the weather was dry. This was 40 years ago.

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    BobH
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    03/09/2008 11:10 AM
    18 wheelers loaded with wheat... crash or overturn. the salvor... who would come out with a vacuum machine and another truck to put the spilled wheat and finish the haul. They would only loose about 25% of the load if the weather was dry. This was 40 years ago
    Yeah, that was back in the day when they thought a little gravel and extra "road roughage" added to the wheat was good for your health. Kinda like the Dr who was smoking cigarettes himself 40 years ago.
    Bob H
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    Ray Hall
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    03/09/2008 2:19 PM

    Crude Oil Spills: I did liability claims for London back in the 90,s and have not liked Budweiser Beer since I learned about petroleum poison

    This is when some of the range cattle in dry arid west Texas drank some salt water and oil burped up from an old well or leaking pipelines and started loosing weight. The evidence is all over the ground around the spill in the form of cow dung explosions. Of course the oil company had to pay for the lost weight of the cattle.

    But the real reason was when a pipeline over the Missouri River broke and spilled several thousands that floated down stream to the Mississippi and when it got to St Louis the intake manifold to the brewery picked up the petroleum and shut the brewery down. It cost several million and it seems since that time that Bud Light does the same thing to my system as the salt water/crude oil did to those old Mexican steers out in the Perminan Basin oilfields........... hmmmm....

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    Medulus
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    03/12/2008 7:19 PM
    Had I known that water to make Budweiser was coming out of the Mississippi river at St. Louis, I wouldn't have needed to know there was an oil spill to stop drinking their beer. We Americans of German extraction tend to prefer a different class of beer than Budweiser anyway.
    Steve Ebner CPCU AIC AMIM

    "With great power comes great responsibility." (Stanley Martin Lieber, Amazing Fantasy # 15 August 1962)
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    Medulus
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    03/12/2008 7:32 PM
    Vehicle Loss:

    I think it may still be a violation of privacy ethics to discuss the details, but suffice it to say that I had a claim for a stolen Mercedes that involved a CPA indicted for embezzlement, the purchase of a house of bondage, and court documents with photographs of the dominatrix in various stages of undress.

    Property Loss:

    Straight line winds (and likely a downburst) in New York state picked up a full sized barn and laid it down forcefully on top of a second barn, which shattered outward, extensively damaging the third barn. With 10% limits on appurtent structures, the claim was a slam dunk limits claim for coverage B. The house, 50 feet away, did not have a shingle out of place.
    Steve Ebner CPCU AIC AMIM

    "With great power comes great responsibility." (Stanley Martin Lieber, Amazing Fantasy # 15 August 1962)
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    HuskerCat
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    03/12/2008 9:44 PM

    18-wheeler tip over on an I-80 offramp: trailer was full of beer (bottles & cans) that spilled out onto the pavement and into the ditch when the side of the trailer split open.  Lots of broken bottles, but some not.  Lots of dented cans, some not.  Department of Health idiots ordered it all disposed of, although there were many curious and willing salvagors.  Watched it get scooped up for transport to the local landfill, but seriously doubt it all reached that destination.  That beverage brand mentioned here may have had kinder effects on Ray's digestive system. 

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    dcmarlin
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    03/12/2008 11:33 PM

    Here's a vehicle claim I handled years ago. 

    The lienholder did not get a few monthly car payments and found out the owner was dead.  Subsequently, they discovered the car was in a fire and, thus, made a claim to the insurance company.  Through the investigation, this is what we found out. 

    The owner "Jack" called his girlfriend "Jill" and told her that he had a surprise for her.  So, that evening, they went out to dinner.  After dinner, they drove to a park.  Jack told Jill to close her eyes as it was time for the surprise.  She was expected him to put a ring on her finger.  Instead, he pulled out a knife and started stabbing her. 

    She fought him off and got out of the car.  He chased her down and hit her with the vehicle.  She was able to get away, run to a local house and call for help. 

    Jack was found a few blocks away.... in his burned vehicle.

    Gimme a bottle of anything and a glazed donut ... to go! (DLR)
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    Ray Hall
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    03/13/2008 12:18 PM

    Insured was an elderly man driving his new pickup on a dark street at night hit a large black mule with the front of his vehicle and the mule came down crushed the cab and killed the insured.

    Happened in my office. The male lover would park in front of the cement truck drivers house after he left for work. On a clear day he left the convertable top down and the husband swung by the house and swung the chute  out and put about 2 yards in the convertable. I understand the owner was alerted when the four tires exploded. The comprehensive paid a total loss on the car, and the "salvage removal" was very costly.

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    Tom Toll
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    03/13/2008 3:34 PM

    I guess this could be considered vehicle, a 1976 Grumman Ag Cat.

    This was back in my younger days where risks were taken that I would not do now, under any circumstances. The pilot was ferrying this new Ag Cat to a dealership. He was enroute to La. and encountered very bad fog, was running low on fuel, (had intended to land at No. Little Rock airport to fuel) and decided to crash the plane as eloquently as possible. He fortunately was over some timber area, near the home I was raised in, near Tollville, AR.(yes the town is named after my family)  he finally got low enough he could see tree tops. He pulled the throttle and just before stalling, pulled the nose up, and stalled into the top of a big ol oak tree. The Ag Cat wedged in the limbs about 30 feet from the ground. His biggest injury was a sprained ankle when he jumped from the lowest limb to the ground.

    I was called to investigate and recover the plane. It was near a paved highway that runs through Tollville, so it was fairly easy to find. I found the plane and decided to climb up the tree to see how much damage it had and determine the best way to recover it without inflicting more damage. I got up there, got into the cockpit and all hell broke loose, including the Ag Cat. It fell to the ground with me in it, nose first, fortunately. Believe it or not, the plane had minor wing damage, bent prop and one "N" wind brace bent. We removed the wings and transported it to the nearest dealer for repairs. I learned one lesson, don't climb up trees in inspect anything.

    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.
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    Ray Hall
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    03/13/2008 4:27 PM

    An adjuster was walking the ridge on an old farm house in Kansas to inspect the roof. Sometime before this inspection the brick chimney that came thru the ridge had been removed. The old wood shingle roof had a three tab comp laid over the wood. The roofer had lace'd the comp. shingle to turn water on the steep roof and it had done this for many years. The slight adjuster fell into the attic up to his arm pitsand was lodged in this position the owner assisted him in getting out. I have no reason not to accept this as the truth.

    I was inspecting a comp roof in Amarillo for damage. This was an inexpensive house and had a metal barn ridge instead of a comp ridge. When I walked to the end to hook my  metal tape to measure the ridge I was zapped with an electric charge. I was able to finish my work and when I told the homeowner about my charge he had this look of disbelief on his face. I warned him about the charged ridge thinking to myself he was unaware that a long nail was touching romex in his attic.

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    HuskerCat
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    03/13/2008 9:55 PM

    A brand new Lincoln Towncar & a horny Chow don't mix well---- Received a vehicle loss a few years back with extensive interior damage.  The insured had arrived at a dog show with their prized overgrown puppy, and had gone inside to register leaving the male dog in the car alone.  Big mistake!!  Another person walked by with their female dog that was apparently "in heat", and raised the testosterone level of the entrapped lovesick male.  The leather upholstery was shredded, large chunks chewed out of the dashboard padding, all the windows scrached, glovebox door ripped off, control knobs off the radio/heater/etc.  It attracted several observers who could do nothing much other than watch in amusement.  Loss was covered under comp. 

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    Ray Hall
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    03/14/2008 11:57 AM

    Ahh good old comp. coverage on an automobile policy. Mike and others think bout what is covered under comp on the auto coverage and what is covered on any "all risk of loss or risk of loss" definitions that are not excepted or excluded under the fire or inland marine forms and you will see it really is the broadest coverage an insuror will ever pay a claim under.

    Keeping in mind anything that is inevitable is not a risk and the word is not in the definition of comprehensive coverage {Looking for my auto policy)

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    Ray Hall
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    03/14/2008 12:38 PM

    This was a Homeowners claim that I had over 10 years ago when I was doing branch assist in Atlanta. Atlanta always seemed to have some very unique claims. The insured had his contractor and the contractors son meet me at the house for the inspection. Both were pulled up storm troopers turned contractors and coverage experts, now you see were this is going.

    The house had a back deck extending out over the hill that was a walkout for the 2nd story. This was an all frame house. The entire exterior wall framing in the downstairs kitchen was rotted out as well as the drywall and top and bottom cabinets, sub floor etc. Really a mess and and a bid for $30,000.00 + to tear R&R all the material and rebuild the deck that was attached to the house with a 2x12 band nailed over the T-111 siding.

    These coverage guru's reasoned it was covered under the H0-3 as the insured was not aware this was going on for years and the insuing damage as a result was covered.....wrong and the carrier agreed with me.

    # 2  A MD. in Stone Mountain purchased 5 acres in a wooded area on a steep hill. The house was between the road and the tennis court in back. The tennis court was about 65 feet higher than the ground the foundation of the house was on by moving enough soil for a flat surface to build a large house and an above ground pool. He hired a person who was moonlighting to keep the bank wall from falling by erection a retaining wall of used rail road ties with drilled holes to use to tie the ties togather and then back filling. A big rain puts weight behind the wall and the whole thing falls and buries the $75,000.00 pool. The good doc did not think so but he had nothing to loose by trying.  This is enough for one day I spent 9 months in Atlanta the first year.

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    BobH
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    03/16/2008 12:12 AM
    I handled an 18 wheeler loss in LA where a non-English speaking gentleman had consumed most of a 12 pack, leaving the rest of it as evidence in the the cab of the truck as he sailed over a guard-rail on a freeway interchange.

    He was pulling a 60 foot trailer (empty) and landed 20 feet down across most of the lanes of I-5. He survived, but took out a few people and created a hell of a long line of claims arising out of one event.

    #2: I was asked to locate somebody for a statement. Last known address was the homeless shelter. After a couple attempts I felt like I needed more info... and spoke with the Claims Examiner. Turns out our boy was recently released from jail after pleading guilty to attempting to run over his boss in the parking lot (our guy was a janitor at the local college). I ended up tracking him down, got his cooperation, and got a very detailed statement. Interesting loss, his boss is repped and presenting a BI claim (there was contact and a police report) along with attempted homicide.
    Bob H
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    okclarryd
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    03/16/2008 5:17 PM

    Many years ago, I worked for a company that insured policemen, firemen, truckers, all sorts of risky insureds.

    One of our insureds, a policeman with Oklahoma City, as he was leaving for work at 4AM, noticed the dome light on in his new at-the-time Corvette.  As he got closer in the apartment complex parking lot, he noticed the passenger door was open.

    He quietly approached the car and found a guy laying in the passenger floor trying to get the radio out of the aforementioned Corvette.  Anger management was not even in anyone's vocabulary at the time, and the very nice, polite policeman kicked the door as hard as he could.

    Being a strapping young lad, he kicked the door hard enough that it warped around the burglar's legs, popped the fiberglass outer shell off, and latched.

    When I inspected the auto loss, I found a Marina Blue Corvette that needed a right door assembly.  The right rocker was damaged and there was enough blood on the interior that I bought a right seat cover and new carpet also.

    Many, many years later, this same policeman used to let me fish the pond at the back of his property where he had retired as a farmer.

    I'm sure the Good Lord is using him in some security capacity.  Heart attack while cutting a patch of alfalfa.

    Larry D Hardin
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    Medulus
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    03/18/2008 5:33 PM
    Vehicle Claim: The insured was awakened by a phone call around midnight. It was his neighbor across the street who asked him if he had given permission for someone to borrow his Mercedes. The insured looked out the window in time to see some ne'er-do-well "youts" backing his car out of the driveway. He and the neighbor got in their vehicles and bagan a pursuit of the stolen car. So this parade of three cars was driving through this development, the insured and the neighbor were on their cell phones to the police. This happened to be one of those housing developments with only one way out, so the thieves kept coming to cul de sacs and turning around. The insured and neighbor did not want to directly engage the potentially dangerous felons, so they just kept following and kept their distance. For about 30 to 40 minutes this low speed keystone cops routine continued until the thieves finally found the way out of the development and escaped with the Mercedes. Then the cops showed up. The car was never recovered, stripped or otherwise.

    Windstorm claim (and somewhat appropos this week) Ten years ago, in 1998, a tornado hit the north side of Atlanta and struck a high income suburb (I think it was Norcross). I rolled up to one of the homes. The first thing I noticed as I got out of the car was two perfect 2" by 4" rectangular cuts in the garage door that looked like they were made with a handheld jigsaw. I pointed them out to the insured and jokingly said, "I guess that's not tornado damage." He said, "Let me show you something." He then opened the garage door and showed me two 2" x 4" laying on the garage floor. He then pointed to a dishevelled stack of 2" x 4" lumber sitting beside the driveway. He said, "Before the tornado, those boards were on top of that stack of lumber." The tornado had apparently picked up the two boards and shot them like arrows through the hardboard garage door. One of many times I learned what happens when I assume.
    Steve Ebner CPCU AIC AMIM

    "With great power comes great responsibility." (Stanley Martin Lieber, Amazing Fantasy # 15 August 1962)
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    Medulus
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    03/18/2008 5:42 PM
    To quote Bill Murray in Stripes: "It's not the uniform women find so attractive. It's the stories."
    Steve Ebner CPCU AIC AMIM

    "With great power comes great responsibility." (Stanley Martin Lieber, Amazing Fantasy # 15 August 1962)
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    HuskerCat
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    03/18/2008 10:24 PM

    This is about an 18 wheeler accident that resulted in the death of the truck driver, but my story has more to do with the aftermath.  The driver apparently suffered from a sudden onset of a medical condition just prior to cresting a hill before a huge traffic back-up ahead of him.  His rig, moving at about 65 mph crashed into the rear of Semi #2 that was stopped on the interstate and caused a huge chain reaction.  Now, Semi #1 was was loaded down with 80# frozen blocks of butter wrapped in plastic, and semi #2 was loaded with whipped topping in aerosol cans.  It was the middle of August and over 100 degrees out, so you can imagine the greasy mess that this created.  Both trailers split open and everything came out.  It was all the wreckers & skid loaders could handle, trying to clear the road way and grassy median and ditch what with spinning their wheels all over.  The law enforcement officers, medical personnel, myself, and everyone else all looked like a bunch of idiots trying to keep our footing, and several of my photos had nothing but sky in them.  The more the fire department tried to wash it down, the slicker it got.  Not much different than an oil tanker wrecking I suppose, but one to remember.

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