How the California Wildfires are Affecting Businesses

By Tyler Chalk, Business and Technology Expert at Embroker

For more than a week, wildfires have been ravaging Northern California, and the Tubbs Fire in Santa Rosa has been particularly destructive. It has burned over 35,000 acres, including dozens of city blocks and suburban neighborhoods. Unlike the other wildfires that are burning in rural areas, this blaze has destroyed many commercial buildings, schools, and historical landmarks, from the Hilton Sonoma Wine Country to Cardinal Newman High School to Fountaingrove’s historic Round Barn, that was built in 1899.

The fire also came very close to Kaiser Permanente Santa Rosa, and the entire hospital was evacuated in the middle of the night, surprising patients and staff, including a few women who were in active labor.

Residents are now returning to what’s left of their homes and businesses, trying to comprehend their losses. The difference with the Tubbs Fire was that it hit commercial districts. It was more of an urban fire, and business owners are all being impacted in different ways.

The good news is that fire is always included in commercial property insurance, which protects your physical assets. It is a named peril, which is something that is specifically noted in your coverage like theft and vandalism. Another type of coverage that would be important is business income or business interruption insurance. This helps cover the loss of income during a disaster and should provide business income right away, help you find a new location, and help you rebuild.

Dependent business income insurance, or sometimes called dependent properties time element coverage, is also essential, since most businesses are dependent on each other to operate. This assists you if a key supplier or another organization you rely on suffers a loss like fire and can’t fulfill orders that you need to run your company.

If your business is affected by fire, if you have a claim, or if you have questions, call your broker first. Your broker is your main advocate when it comes to your insurance. Brokers have lots of business with carriers and can leverage this relationship on your behalf, and they can help you keep things going when all feels truly lost.

For up-to-date information about the California fires, please go to CAL FIRE’s website.

If you need more help or information to intelligently insure your business, you can reach out to our team of expert brokers. Or, if you prefer to get started on intelligent quotes, create your Embroker account today.