Ri$k Happens: Cold as the North Pole

Jan. 09, 2022 - By Angela Cady, AIC - Loss Analyst, ARA Insurance

The rental store manager was bundled up to the extreme due to an arctic blast of cold air that had moved into the area. He trudged up to the rental store and unlocked the doors, then began the opening procedure for the store. When he got to the back room, his heart sank. Water pooled around equipment on the floor. Damaged drywall and water trickling down from the ceiling clued him in that a pipe had burst overnight. The rental store previously weathered many cold winters, but this time, the intense wave of cold had been too much for the pipe.

The manager quickly shut off the water supply, called a water mitigation firm to help protect against further damage and took pictures. He reported a claim to his insurance provider. The matter is ongoing.

Running a bit of warm water from a faucet can help keep water moving in the pipes and lessen the chances of freezing. Opening up cabinet doors or removing ceiling tiles can help as well. Keep your thermostat set to the same temperature you would during the day. Pipe insulation is an inexpensive way to help protect vulnerable pipes. Adding insulation in the walls and ceiling can be a good long-term solution as well.

For additional tips on preventing pipes from freezing and burst visit thisoldhouse.com and consumerreports.org.

This item, provided by ARA Insurance, Kansas City, Mo., contains safety tips and is intended to help readers better understand and manage risk. For more safety and risk management information, customers of ARA Insurance can log on to ReSource. Access is free, so if you haven’t signed up yet, contact your agent or call 800-821-6580.

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