Taking Things For Granted
“I can see the fires burning from my window. We might have to evacuate.” So began my mom during our most recent Sunday phone date. A resident of Colorado Springs, Colo. since 1998, she was referring to the “Waldo Canyon fire,” the latest in a string of aggressive blazes. This fire began in
the Pike National Forest and had consumed close to 2,500 acres since that Saturday, triggering
evacuation orders for 11,000 Coloradoans.
Safety, of course, is the foremost concern. Then there is the rest. Considering the trajectory
of the High Park fire and the other seven fires burning across the state, many precious assets—homes, natural marvels, black bears, historic structures, amongst others—are in serious
“This is the one time that Colorado wouldn’t be good for your allergies,” my mom joked,
trying to appear upbeat.
Imagining ominous plumes of gray smoke billowing over the “happy little trees” lining my
mom’s neighborhood and infiltrating Pike’s Peak is jarring. The vistas of Pike’s Peak, the most-summited high-elevation mountain in the nation, inspired “American The Beautiful” after all.
Countless public parks, one of which is named the “Garden of the Gods,” have served as the
backdrop for happy family excursions over the years. In 2010, we made our way to Estes Park
and stayed—and consequently survived—a night in the 102-year-old Stanley Hotel, which
inspired Stephen King to pen The Shining.
Attempting to articulate the region’s striking contours and beauty would be futile. Instead-words seem better spent on how to mitigate the damage they incur when disaster does strike.
To that end, we have assembled a series of articles in our online repository on PropertyCa-
sualty360.com to assist you in managing specific risks and coordinating investigations for
complex P&C fire claims.
We—excluding perhaps the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hanh—are prone to taking nature
and, well, many things for granted. We have an astounding capacity for doing so, from the
way we live to the way we work. So sometimes you need a little perspective. In this month’s
cover story, experts at Deloitte offer a fresh take on implementing claim predictive models,
emphasizing the “people” benefits of well-executed engagement strategies. Learn how to turn
your most reluctant adjuster into an ardent proponent, beginning on page 20.
“It’s human nature
to start taking
things for granted
again when danger
loudly on the door.”
Christina Bramlet, Editor in Chief
handling a claim involving a complex fire? Learn about successful approaches to wildfire
investigation in an exclusive story by Jeffrey A. Berino CFEI, CCFI, B.S., AAS, Deputy Chief
with Colorado’s Lake Dillon Fire District and a senior fire investigator with Pie Consulting and
Engineering. In “Wildfire Disaster Claims in 2012: Another Big Burn?” Berino provides an overview
of the 2012 wildfire season, along with techniques and considerations for carefully vetting experts to
facilitate effective claims investigations.