PRODUCT: Wildfire Defense Services endorsement
COMPANIES: Travelers, Wildfire Defense Systems
BEST RATING: A+ (Superior)
AVAILABILITY: Available on an open brokerage basis
FOCUS: Travelers is working with Wildfire Defense Systems (WDS), a private firm that specializes in wildfire mitigation, to offer an endorsement to all existing California Home and Landlord policies at no additional cost.
The endorsement provides an added layer of wildfire protection by giving customers access to loss prevention services, such as taping vents, applying fire retardants and setting up sprinklers.
“This is another step in Travelers wildfire strategy to help best protect our customers and what matters to them,” says Eric Nordquist, senior vice president, personal insurance product management, Travelers. “The endorsement is specifically designed as another layer of protection for home or rental properties from the threat of wildfires.”
WDS specializes in wildfire education, loss prevention and wildfire response services. It has a contract with the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) to provide wildfire suppression services. It also contracts with insurance companies to provide wildfire loss prevention services for their customers.
COVERAGE DETAILS: In the event of a wildfire, WDS maps and monitors the fire in relation to customers’ properties. They utilize the largest private wildfire fleet in the country and proprietary wildfire forecasting and predictive analysis systems to identify homes that could potentially be impacted by a wildfire event.
Response teams monitor properties before, during and after active wildfire events to take any necessary actions, such as setting up sprinklers, fuel source mitigation, application of vent tape, applying fire blocking gel and fire retardants, and closing structure openings.
In addition to loss prevention and mitigation services, WDS may also remove patio furniture, firewood, pine needles, dead leaves and similar items that are within five feet of the home. WDS may cut down shrubs and trees and may check gutters to remove combustible items like pine needles and dead leaves.
There is no guarantee that WDS will be able to provide services to all impacted homes, but they will service as many homes as they can per their protocol.
UNDERWRITING: The endorsement is automatically available to all California customers with home and landlord policies.
MINIMUM PREMIUM: No extra charge. The endorsement is available to all new and existing California Home and Landlord policies effective June 3, 2019.
COVERAGE TERRITORY: California
COVERAGE AVAILABILITY: California
CONTACT: Travelers; 888-534-7552.
Will Jones is IA senior editor.