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A new imaging technology being deployed by Fireman’s Fund Insurance Co. can help reduce the risk of catastrophic damage, injury and loss of life due to fire. It can also spot potential water damage to homes and personal property before it happens.

Fireman’s Fund said its Personal Risk Services is deploying advanced thermal imaging technology to help identify moisture problems and potential fire hazards in high-value homes nationwide.

The technology uses “forward looking infrared” (FLIR) cameras to help identify plumbing leaks, moisture intrusions and potential issues in electrical systems before they have a chance to cause major problems for homeowners – and in many cases before there is any visual clue that something is wrong.

These cameras use an imaging technology that senses infrared radiation and makes it possible to “see” the infrared environment behind walls, in ceilings and under floors.

“Our certified thermographers perform basement-to-attic scans looking for leaking pipes, electrical imbalances, hot circuits in electrical panels and problems in heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems,” said Richard Standring, Risk Services manager at Fireman’s Fund. “The cameras allow us to detect potential problems without knocking holes in walls or tearing into ceilings so it’s a completely non-invasive process that can help protect homeowners’ property and lives.”

In photos taken with thermographic cameras, warm objects stand out well against cooler backgrounds. Cooler temperatures may indicate a wet area from a leaking water pipe or water intrusion from a roof leak. A hot reading may indicate an electrical hot spot, which may be a potential fire hazard.

Fireman’s Fund is making the infrared scan service available to its high net worth homeowners, at no extra charge. Thermal imaging inspections may include a customer report that provides both thermal and digital images of any problems detected and a recommended course of action for fixing them.

The service is also available to people with high-value art collections – with scans being performed on storage and display areas – and for historic building inspections.

Taken from January 28, 2013 Claims Journal
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