Insurance adjusters in the Louisiana parishes of Plaquemines and St. Bernard are maneuvering quickly through both hurricane-ravaged parishes, thanks to the coordinated claims adjusting program implemented there last month, the Louisiana Department of Insurance reported.
According to Commissioner of Insurance Robert Wooley, the program, or “grid system,” calls for adjusters to go neighborhood-by-neighborhood in a coordinated effort to ensure no properties that need assessing are skipped.
St. Bernard and Plaquemines, which were badly damaged by Hurricane Katrina, have been divided into small grids containing approximately 1,000 households each. The grid map for St. Bernard Parish consists of 25 grids. Plaquemines officials subdivided their parish into nine grids, using their council districts as boundaries.
Adjusters started with Grid 1 on Oct. 17 and in one week were able to visit over 90 percent of the area properties. Many insurers completed adjusting early in Grid 1 and continued on to Grid 2 and beyond during that first week. A few companies report they have completed all of their adjusting in each parish. All other insurers will continue to report weekly to the Department of Insurance until their claims adjusting within the grid system is complete.
Wooley believes an organized approach to adjusting a whole parish is essential to its redevelopment. “I think it is important that entire neighborhoods and city blocks are all adjusted at the same time so the citizens living there can start the rebuilding process together,” Wooley said. “A piecemeal approach slows down the redevelopment process. I am pleased this voluntary program has been met with such success.”
Maps of each grid are available on the department’s Web site at www.ldi.state.la.us.
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