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Impact of 2020 Iowa Derecho still being felt a year later

Published: Aug. 11, 2021 at 12:06 AM CDT
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - The 2020 Derecho storm resulted in $11 billion of damage, according to the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration and remains the costliest thunderstorm in U.S. history.

The Derecho is only the third severe weather related event to surpass $10 billion in damage.

The storm stretched hundreds of miles and crossed several midwestern states. It resulted in the destruction of 1 million acres of corn and 600,000 acres of soybeans in Iowa. The storm also falttended homes, buildings, and trees.

A year later, some property owners are still waiting for repairs.

According to Iowa’s Insurance Division, insurance companies have paid more than $3 billion in settlements to policyholders.

For Muscatine agency, Lee Agency Insurance, the storm brought a record number of property damage claims for the company.

“We’ve had over seven million dollars from clients across the state. And that’s from Lee Agency clients,” Andy Schoepf said.

According to the state of Iowa, the storm was followed by unique challenges, including the pandemic, supply chain issues, and the ability to hire contractors.

“I know one of the issues is finding contractors. I drove around Cedar Rapids the other day and saw a lot of mismatched roofs because building materials were just hard to come by,” Schoepf said.

For those still struggling with their insurance company, you’re encourage to keep trying, but another option to consider is seeking legal advice.

IF you feel you haven’t received the appropriate claim amount, you also have the option to file a consumer complaint through the Iowa Insurance Division.

“If it’s the matter of an insurance company where they’re not responsive, a lot of them post contact information. Asking to speak with managers. No insurance company wants claims to go on for a long period of time. They’re motivated to get claims closed quickly for the most part,” Schoepf said.

According to a report from NOAA, the nation saw a record number of billion dollar disasters in 2020.

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