Insurance professionals deal in probabilities and the likelihood that something catastrophic will happen to the people, property, vehicles and finances they insure. A worst-case-scenario for property insurers has made the rounds this week, highlighting an environmental "time bomb."
A highly buzzed-about piece in The New Yorker delves into the seismic and historical features of the Cascadia fault, a meeting of two tectonic plates under the Pacific Northwest of the United States. Due to the high level of pressure surrounding those plates, a slip or minor incidence of seismic activity could trigger an earthquake that many Americans don't know to expect. The San Andreas fault gains a lot of attention as our national tectonic site due to the earthquakes it has triggered in California. Nevertheless, writer Kathryn Schultz would direct our attention to Cascadia due to its higher stakes, likening it to the tectonic fault line that launched the Fukushima disaster in Japan.
"When the next very big earthquake hits, the northwest edge of the continent, from California to Canada and the continental shelf to the Cascades, will drop by as much as six feet and rebound thirty to a hundred feet to the west—losing, within minutes, all the elevation and compression it has gained over centuries," explains Andrew C. Revkin of The New York Times.
Seismic activity is often difficult to predict and unique to certain regions of the country, which is why homeowners are often required to take out separate insurance policies to gain coverage for earthquake damage. For any policy, it's critical for valuations to reflect the most current and accurate replacement cost of a home, office, farm or ranch.
At e2Value, our suite of calculators and workflow solutions help insurance professionals keep the properties in their book up-to-date. Contact us today to learn more about how our solutions can support efficiency in your insurance office.