Words to Live By

Don't be afraid your life will end; be afraid it will never begin.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A Bit of Storm Damage - Updated

Update #1: The neighbor's homeowner's insurance won't cover the damage. They said it was an act of God. I said "Prove it." They don't like me now. So, I saw my friendly local Geico adjuster today. We'll find out tomorrow if the car is a total loss. Not quite sure how I feel about that yet.

Update #2: I love Geico! My car is a total loss. Let me explain how good this really is for me. The small remainder of my loan will be paid. I am keeping the running/operating vehicle, and I will get some cash, too! Woo-hoo! No car payment and cash in my pocket? Thank you, Mr. Tree and thank you, Geico!

On Monday night we had one hell of a storm here. I haven't seen a storm like this in about 3 or 4 years. 80 mph winds, crazy-ass rain, and I think maybe a tornado. Well, maybe not a tornado. Mind you, these storms usually only last 5-10 minutes at this intensity level, but this one lasted for several hours.

When the storm started at 10:30-ish, Big D went outside to take the canopy off the gazebo in our back yard. Too late. The gazebo was trashed 5 minutes into the storm. While he was attempting canopy removal, the wind was so violent, his hand actually became impaled by the gazebo in 2 places. No worries, he's ok.

After the fun & games with the gazebo, I went to bed. When I woke up yesterday morning, I took a quick peek out the back door as I let the dogs out to do their business. It was wet, but I didn't see any new damage. It was also 4:00 a.m. and dark out. I probably wouldn't have noticed anyway.

Fast forward to 7:00 a.m.: I walk out the door to jump in the dented ghetto Buick. I have an all day seminar at the Arizona Biltmore, and I don't want to be late. This is what I saw:




The neighbor's tree had fallen on the Buick. I have actually had a tree fall on one of my cars before. So my initial reaction was, "You have got to be kidding me...again?!" I woke Big D and he broke out the trusty saws-all to get the tree off my car. There was surprisingly little damage, and my windows were not broken! I made it to the seminar on time, too. Here are a few more pics of all the storm damage. What a storm!



20 comments:

Paula said...

Wow! I would've reacted far less calmly than you did! I think that storm is now blowing thru here...the winds have been CrAzY since yesterday afternoon. Glad to hear D's hand isn't too bad.

IowaHarleyGirl (Stephanie) said...

Wow...that stinks! Glad you are all ok!

Queen B said...

wowwwwwwwwwwwwwww! that is crazy! amazed you made it on time, too.

FLHX_Dave said...

Fuck'n trees are out to get us all!!! I'm telling you it's a conspiracy! They are revolting...and if I was ever thinking about being a tree hugger...well, not anymore. Screw trees man!

Sounds like you guys got one helluva' blowjob. whoooooo!!!!! sorry about the buick...be glad none of the bikes were out.

Fatboy said...

If you chop up fallen trees while wearing your leather HD jacket, you just might be a biker!

Willy D said...

Damn! The Buick never looked so good. I can’t believe you finally washed it ;)

Worst thing is that the tree gave you privacy with the garage door opened.

Mr. Motorcycle said...

A minnesotan quote: "It could have been worse!"

Glad you are all o.k.

B.B. said...

Well, I'm glad you weren't walking out to the car when the tree did it's thing! :)

Jane said...

geez, glad everyone is safe. I missed the whole storm :(

Kim Thomas said...

Holy crap! This is terrible. I can't believe it happened to you twice!

Rick said...

Insurance won't cover damage done by your NEIGHBOR'S tree? You've got to be kidding me. That can't be right.

Lady Ridesalot said...

I think Dave is on to something. The trees are starting to kick ass!!

I guess it could have been worse! Yikes!!

Mr. Motorcycle said...

Addressing Ricks comment,

Not trying to be a no it all here, but this is a really interesting topic that I run across and have to explain for my job as an insurance adjuster on a pretty regular basis.

Seems odd doesn't it? (that the neighbor's insurance wont pay for Daryl and Ann's car damage and debris cleanup of the tree) until you really think about it. I pay claims out on this particular situation several times each year for our own insureds. Their neighbor's insurance doesn't owe for the fallen tree, any more than they owe the neighbor if a tornado blows a piece of debris from their yard into the neighbor's house. Either is an act of nature. The neighbor didn't make the tree fall down. If my insured makes a claim against another's insurance policy, it is considered a liability claim. There is no other type of claim you can make against another parties insurance company. Example, in order for my insured to go after the neighbor's insurance for the tree falling on my insured's property (house, car, etc.), there would have to be negligence. Without negligence, there can be no liability; without liability, there is no claim. All that is left for insurance coverage available to my insured in this case would be a storm damage claim against their own policy for wind making a tree fall onto the insured car. Remember when I said the neighbor didn't make the tree fall down? If he did, say cutting a tree down that was not roped properly, and it , or a branch fell onto insured car, house, Etc. then, there is negligence, and liability, and a claim could be made against the neighbor's policy under a 3rd party liability claim.

Ann said...

Mr M: Thank you for explaining that. What if parts of this specific tree had fallen in 2 previous storms? The tree is dead. It should have been taken down a long time ago. There is one more section left to be blown over by a storm, and it's hanging over his house. I'm thinking there is liability there, but it would be hard to prove. Not that it matters now. Anyway, Karma will get him because after the next storm he'll have said tree inside his home. :)

Mr. Motorcycle said...

Technically speaking, if the tree was a prior hazard, and you notified the neighbor of this and requested it be chopped down because it is a liability threat, and you had a witness and or documented the date and time you warned your neighbor about this, then there would indeed be negligence and a liability claim could be brought forth against the neighbor's insurance carrier. Seems like a lot, but it does happen. I guess it helps if you know those rules going in though.

"Joker" said...

Ok...let me guess...you flashed the Gekko some titty didn't you?? :)

On a more serious note, I had a tree on my own property fall on my own house in a storm 9 years ago. My insurance covered it, but they raised my rates the following year because I made a claim. I'd be more accepting of the "act of God" thing if the insurance company gave it equal time. Like Mr. M said, no negligence = no liability and therefore no claim. So if I was doing my own Tree Service and screwed up, which cause the tree to fall on my house, then fine - raise my rates. But when it's an "act of God," they should just pay and not penalize the insured for actually using their policy for what it is for.

At the time, I was also told that if one of my trees fell on a neighbor's house, I was alright UNLESS it was dead. Supposedly, it's your responsibility as a property owner to get rid of dead trees before they fall down go boom, or it's your negligent ass. That's what I heard anyway. Don't know how true it is.

If you weren't already getting paid, I'd say you should revisit that claim based on the dead tree issue. But, since you're making out on the deal, I suppose it's best to leave it be. Time to make some more "witness protection program" jokes when your neighbor is within earshot!

Mr. Motorcycle said...

Joker,
Here is my best guess as to what happened to you with your insurance company:
Unless there is something I don't know, and you have some kind of screwed up policy, which I don't think can be done legally because of insurance legislations per state, they can't raise your rates individually for what is considered a storm loss. You could however, have lost a "no claims" discount on you premium which would essentially raise your rates. However, if so, you could turn in another claim a week later and your rates would be unaffected by that second claim. Turn in too many claims in a short period of time and risk "Non-renewal". In other words, they may not cancel you, "because they can't", but they can elect to not renew your policy when your policy period of coverage expires. This is my best answer to what happened.

Anonymous said...

WOW!!!! I can't believe that kind of storm was that bad. I am glad all is well and you were able to get to your semniar. We miss and love you. Toshia and Eric.

WooleyBugger said...

Poor Buick, just can't catch a break can it. It's just a car though but now if it was a bike then that statment would be much different.
We told out neighbors a few years back they had a tree needed trimmed and they told us the same thing, we got the power company to take ours down, guess that covers us both.
First the power company said no but then Ipointed out that the pole next to it with a transformer would be taken out if the tree fell in a storm (All this came up because the power company came around trimming the trees limbs to protect power lines, but they made the large oak to heavy on one side because they trimmed off all the limbs on one side only making the tree lop sided and heavy to that side) so if said tree fell then they would be out replacing pole, transformer, line and cleaning up a big mess that could have been avoided. They decided taking the tree was better for all those concerned.

Paula said...

glad the insurance (basically) worked out. I wonder if GEICO will try to collect from your neighbor's insurance?