Storm causes insurance emergencies |

Storm causes insurance emergencies

Jill Keller, Appeal Staff Writer

State Insurance Commissioner Alice Molasky-Arman designated western Nevada a catastrophe on Monday after thousands of residents filed claims following the weekend’s storm activity.

The designation will allow insurance adjusters from out-of-state to operate here and help local adjusters process the influx of claims.

The designation came as several insurance companies declared their own emergencies. Claims adjusters from all over the country will arrive in Northern Nevada in the next few days.

“We normally don’t get that many claims from a storm,” said Joe Gacioch, spokesman for Allstate Insurance’s Southwest region.

Allstate reported taking 300 claims by noon Monday for homeowners reporting damage to roofs and other property mostly from strong winds and fallen trees, Gacioch said.

Susan Bithell, state executive director for Farmers Insurance, reported the company had received 800 claims following the storm.

The best thing to do is to make temporary repairs to minimize damage until permanent fixes can be made. Homeowners should save their receipts for tarps or other purchases so they can be reimbursed, Gacioch said.

Allstate urged people to call in their claims Monday to 1-800-54-STORM or their local agents. Claims can also be filed online at

While some residents experienced damage, many were just trying to cope with power outages, snow and ice and basic repairs.

People searching for kerosene for lamps would be hard-pressed to find any in the Carson area, according to local hardware stores. Carson City True Value Hardware owner Kent Johnston said kerosene lamp oil, heaters and heater wicks had sold out Monday. He was expecting to sell out of ice melt by today.

“We’ve sold out of pretty much everything,” Johnston said. The store does have supplies to insulate pipes from cracking in the freezing weather, though. Johnston recommends taking extra measures to protect homes and piping during winter storms.

The Home Depot in northern Douglas County reported it had sold all generators by Monday. Snowblowers and snow shovels were also nearly gone, said Larry Campbell, a manager at the store. People were also buying roofing and fencing materials, he said.