How Donan’s CAT Team Rises to the Demand of Catastrophic Perils

How Donan’s CAT Team Rises to the Demand of Catastrophic Perils

When catastrophic perils result in extensive property loss, the volume of claims from major events can be overwhelming. Donan’s catastrophe (CAT) response is designed to get licensed experts on the ground to bring adjusters accurate, scientific conclusions while maintaining empathy for property owners who are going through a difficult time.

One Donan engineer who has traveled for CAT work over many years noted, “We are out there to perform a site inspection, but at the same time I am convinced that we help people process what has happened to them by taking several moments to listen.”

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When catastrophic weather events, like tornadoes, prompt dozens or hundreds of claims, you need an assessment partner who can give them objective and timely attention to make policyholders whole. 

Preparation Before the Storm

Most CAT responses are the result of extreme weather events, and the proverbial calm before the storm is key to successful deployment. The Donan team plans a response that will best serve you and your policyholders. By carefully monitoring weather data from a variety of reputable sources such as NOAA’s National Hurricane Center, our experts predict the location, intensity, and inspection numbers for the first month after the event. 

Using these projections, the team makes arrangements to ensure everything is in place once our clients need boots on the ground. Before engineers arrive onsite, their equipment and transportation are waiting, including safety gear necessary for assessing extensive damage. Hotel reservations, plans for moving and storing necessary equipment, and engineers standing by to relocate from other areas ensure the resources you need to address hundreds, sometimes thousands, of inspections in a single area are there when the claims start coming in. 

Monitoring Weather

A swift response means knowing where and when assessment support is likely to be needed, so monitoring weather is key to preparation.

After a peril strikes, these plans are constantly revised based on client needs. Demand and capacity are reassessed weekly, and the team has a series of contingency plans ready as the situation unfolds. 

Donan’s successful CAT program has made us an assessment resource to a variety of organizations, including FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program. Every part of the organization is involved in the planning and implementation of a response. The sales team remains in close contact with clients as you prepare to react to your policyholders’ needs, so Donan’s contributions can be tailored to your expectations. Regional managers adapt schedules for optimal coverage if the need to divert engineers arises. A scheduling team is designated to communicate exclusively with clients and policyholders from affected areas. 

Expertise on the Ground

Donan’s national footprint is designed to serve clients no matter where an assignment is and whatever the need is, but it also means facing a variety of perils. Everything from snow load to drought, from tornadoes to hurricanes, might trigger hundreds of property claims. Because our experts often need to leave their home states to help clients in high-need areas, engineers are licensed in multiple states. Certification specifically targets regions most likely to be affected by severe weather, such as Texas, Florida, and the Atlantic coast. 

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Donan has nationwide coverage, and engineers are often licensed in multiple states to ensure we are prepared to send teams to areas vulnerable to weather events like hurricanes and flooding.

Engineers licensed in these states receive extensive ongoing training to investigate flood and other storm damage. For example, every engineer is required to complete a comprehensive in-house flood course and pass the associated exam before handling a flood assignment with Donan. This training coupled with the years of experience we bring to the field ensures each investigator is ready to verify the cause and extent of loss and make repair recommendations when needed.  

Responding to these events often means performing assessments from sunup to sundown, so their schedule is managed by a centralized team, allowing field engineers to focus on hands-on work. To make sure the engineer on each assignment is focused and refreshed, they generally deploy to affected areas for a week at a time before a fresh project manager takes their place in the field. This time at home lets engineers catch their breath before returning to the field, and to focus on creating reports that are the industry standard for quality.

Safeguarding Trust

You’ve put a lot of effort into gaining the trust of your policyholders, and that’s increasingly important when they’re under the kind of stress a severe peril can cause. Meeting their expectations after a storm means helping them return to their lives as quickly as possible. A reliable assessment partner can get the answers you need to address a claim accurately without sacrificing your relationship with your customers. 

The Donan team’s honed CAT process is evident in our ability to ramp up quickly following an event, our scientific processes, and our readiness to meet property owners and their representatives with compassion and professionalism. Peace of mind is important. A compassionate approach contributes to your policyholder’s experience with Donan and their impression of their carrier.

Donan’s CAT protocol is constantly evolving to meet your needs as they grow and change after catastrophic events. To find out how preparation, scheduling, inspections, compassion, and communication can help you with your claims, submit an assignment today.