A warehouse explosion in west Houston caused multiple people to jolt out of bed this Friday morning as reports show the event left excessive damage and could be felt miles away. The incident happened at 4:30 A.M inside the Watson Grinding and Manufacturing factory, which makes valves and provides thermal-spray coating for various professional equipment.
The blast shook residents out of bed, with some believing their homes were being robbed. It caused windows to burst into shards from the sheer force of the explosion and damaged scores of homes neighboring around the factory. Not to mention the chemical propylene sprayed out from the factory and then oozed afterwards for hours. The chemical wasn’t contained until law enforcement secured the valve some time later in the early morning. Propylene is a colorless glass that is highly flammable. It’s been proven that prolonged exposure to propylene can lead to dizziness, light-headedness and even liver damage.
Most of the area surrounding the explosion has shut down including multiple schools and some businesses that suffered property damage. Many people are already assisting residents and business owners secure their properties so they can stop potential looters. Unfortunately, one event has caused a whole community to be on standby until some repairs are done.
The explosion could put many people out of business, but not simply because of the damage the event created. Initially, insurers and liable parties will likely attempt to limit the amount of loss they will pay by denying or undervaluing valid claims. Moreover, the total number of claimants can mean a significant lag time in getting valid claims promptly and properly paid.
The Watson Grinding and Manufacturing explosion has forced hundreds of people in the northwest Houston area to move out of their homes or close their businesses. If you are one of these people, it is important that you know the steps to take so you can properly recover for your loss.
The attorneys at LeMaster & Ahmed, PLLC have decades of combined experience helping clients recover after catastrophic property damage loss.
It is important that every claimant follow these steps in order to maximize their claim recovery.
- Document Everything – Take photos of every inch of damaged property. Make sure you have multiple shots that are clear and have good lighting. Write down notes of all the damage including if mold is present, chemicals got on objects, and other hazards. When you make a phone call with the city or a contractor make sure you write down the date, time when you spoke, as well as the content of the phone call. This is especially important if you don’t have any insurance.
- Protect Your Property – Do what you can to protect your home from any further damage. Make sure you do what is in your control. So, if you can board up windows or remove debris it’s important you do so after you documented everything. However, don’t injure yourself to protect your property from looters or lethal hazards.
- Call Your Insurance Provider or File a Claim
- After you’ve gathered the details, it’s time you call the insurance company. File a claim and make an appointment with an adjuster to assess the situation. They should tell you if the damage is included in your policy and if you need to pay a deductible. It’s likely your insurance will default to Watson Grinding and Manufacturing, the likely liable party, to get coverage for your home.
- Another option is to file a claim with Watson Grinding and Manufacturing directly for your repairs. It’s likely the company has set up a hotline or will take a message to return your call. There will be a lot of callers to the Watson Grinding and Manufacturing so it is likely that it may take a while for you to receive a response.
- Hiring an Experienced Property Damage Claim Attorney – In some cases, you may need to hire an experienced attorney with a focus in insurance law and property damage claim recovery to receive the coverage you need. Insurance companies and/or the liable party may attempt to dodge paying your claim or they may attempt to pay you less than you are owed. Filing a claim with Watson may pan out okay, but they surely will have hired a skilled legal team and do whatever possible to give the lowest settlement since so many people are going to be filing claims with them. Having an experienced attorney on your side may mean you will receive fair compensation to help you recover and restore your property. With the help of an effective and efficient lawyer, you will feel more confident when negotiating with adjusters and Watson representatives.
Have you been looking for an attorney for your property damage claim? Then the lawyers at LeMaster & Ahmed, PLLC are here to help. Our attorneys have been practicing insurance law for over 30 years combined and have represented numerous people with serious property damage claims. We are dedicated to our clients and will do whatever it takes to help them recover. Let us help you today by scheduling your free consultation at (888) 306-2119. We will consult with you and discuss your legal options.
LeMaster & Ahmed, PLLC has clients throughout the greater Houston and Dallas area with offices in The Woodlands and Plano.
This article was updated on January 27, 2020.