World Interrupted

It was hard to make it through August and not notice the severity of “interruptions” we faced.

By Eric Gilkey

Early last month, toxic green algae blooms in Lake Erie resulted in a severe 56-hour water advisory for businesses and 500,000 people in and around Toledo, Ohio. The water supply was so tainted by the pollution that even boiling the water didn’t make it potable. The fact that the water advisory took place over the weekend meant restaurants and hotels were disproportionately affected by the outage, losing thousands of dollars in revenue during peak hours.

But perhaps the grossest understatement of “interruption” still was taking place at press time in Ferguson, Mo. Having seen first-hand eerily similar circumstances during the 2001 riots in Cincinnati—I was working downtown when protests and rioting began in response to the shooting death of an unarmed black teenager by a white police officer—I can say with confidence that Ferguson faces a difficult road. Cincinnati is a much different place than it used to be, but it took a decade for the urban core to recover both in perception and reality. St. Louis attorney Stephen Moore gives us a look inside the coverage issues that the businesses of Ferguson will be able to rely upon as they start the journey.

Insurance can’t fix every problem. But its role in the process of putting insureds back on their feet cannot be underestimated. We should all be proud to be a part of it.   

Eric Gilkey is executive editor of CLM Magazine, a publication of the Claims and Litigation Management (CLM) Alliance. He may be reached at eric.gilkey@TheCLM.org.

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