NORTHBROOK, Ill., May 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Oklahoma residents should inspect for tornado damage once it is safe to do so. Residents should be very careful when returning home following the tornadoes that struck earlier this week.
Allstate recommends homeowners carefully inspect their homes for possible signs of tornado damage, and that residents pay particular attention to the following areas:
- Look for wall cracks in spots where there were no cracks before. Cracks of a quarter inch or more are signs walls may have shifted or settled. Look carefully around windows and doors because these are typically the weakest spots in a home's construction.
- Make sure to closely check rooms not regularly used.
- Look outside for physically visible, new cracks in the home's foundation. Look inside for changes in the levelness of floors. Changes in the level of the floor could be signs of a lift in the home's foundation.
- Inspect plumbing. Look closely around the water heater and/or water softener for signs of water leaks that did not exist before. Flush all toilets, turn on all of the water faucets, and check connecting pipes for any leaking water.
- In the days or weeks after a tornado, check walls and ceilings for water stains or yellowing that did not exist before. It could indicate damage on the roof.
- Carefully inspect the outside gutters. Damaged gutters could cause water damage inside the home long after the actual gutter damage occurs.
Regarding damage from the tornado in Oklahoma, Allstate policyholders who suspect their home might have sustained damage during the recent storm can contact Allstate through The Good Hands Network by dialing 1-800-54-STORM or visiting Allstate.com.
As part of Allstate's efforts to help policyholders who suffered damage from the tornado, the company has deployed Mobile Claims Centers and Catastrophe Response Teams to the area to assist policyholders.
If after inspection, your home shows signs of tornado damage and needs repair, Allstate strongly encourages homeowners to be careful when hiring contractors. Following large natural disasters, contractor fraud is more common.
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer, serving approximately 16 million households through its Allstate, Encompass, Esurance and Answer Financial brand names and Allstate Financial business segment. Allstate branded insurance products (auto, home, life and retirement) and services are offered through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, and Allstate exclusive financial representatives, as well as via www.allstate.com, www.allstate.com/financial and 1-800 Allstate®, and are widely known through the slogan "You're In Good Hands With Allstate®." As part of Allstate's commitment to strengthen local communities, The Allstate Foundation, Allstate employees, agency owners and the corporation provided $29 million in 2012 to thousands of nonprofit organizations and important causes across the United States.
SOURCE Allstate Insurance