The O’ Canada Collection Is Now Available

As some of you may know, I have a new site up called Handmade in Canada. It is a site of handmade and art pieces, influenced and inspired by Canada, and often made with natural, eco-friendly and Canadian sourced materials.

Over the next few weeks we will be adding shops and galleries to our various collections on Handmade in Canada. Today we launched the O’ Canada Collection.

Our O’Canada Collection celebrates the colors of our flag. The iconic red and white, are accompanied by grays, dark browns and blacks. This is classic Canadian. Our collection will remind you of ….well……everything Canadian (and maybe old school work socks too!).

The O’ Canada Collection is made of natural sheep wool, produced here in Canada and milled in a heritage mill. We believe in using natural products and using Canadian produced raw materials when possible. The yarn for this collection is hand dyed in natural dyes in micro batches with the red color being obtained through dyeing with lac. All items are hand knit and are one of a kind. Each item posted is available for purchase and ready to be shipped. Items can be viewed by clicking HERE.

Items start at $15.00 including tax and shipping within Canada. The pieces make great gifts for friends and family  as they are Canadian made, unbreakable, and ship well.

I hope you will pop over to the new site and check it out. More collections are to come. Also if you have any special requests send us an email, we are always up for creating something new.

For more information please feel free to email us at handmade-canada@outlook.com .

www.handmade-canada.com

by Debra Hunter

Red Deer, Alberta and Pender Island, BC, Canada

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Handmade in Canada…things are looking good…..plus a link to some great music

LMYR 1I may have mentioned my new project in passing on this blog before. The project is called Handmade in Canada. The concept is to profile Canadian artists, artisans, musicians, writers and growers (and food producers).

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Being an artist and maker myself (and knowing many other creative people), the most difficult part of our craft is promoting what we create, showing people what we do, and letting people know where and how to purchase our creations. Most of us want to be tucked away in our studios working away rather than marketing ourselves. After a lot of thought I made the decision to create a site to do just that, and the site/blog is www.handmade-canada.com . In the last few weeks interest has been growing. We are seeing some great things made by Canadian makers and hearing some great music. We are also meeting some really cool people. This is turning out to be a fabulous project with great potential.

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As I have a ton of readers on this blog, I will also on occasion be linking through profiles from the Handmade in Canada site. It won’t turn the blog into an on going infomercial, I wouldn’t want to rob readers of updates on my seedlings or the ongoing war with the insurance industry (near the end now…report for scope of repairs was 14 PAGES long….I’ll share more in another post). I want to give each of these creative people as much exposure as possible ( and show all the readers some pretty cool stuff too!).

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If you follow www.islandhomeblog.wordpress.com I will also be sharing west coast creators on that blog, especially since home studios are so much of the island culture.

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Today I am going to share a link for Liam MacKenzie and Young Rust. Check out their bio by clicking HERE, and definitely listen to their music……it is really, really good.

Hopefully by sharing links, blog readers will find some new music that they love, a book they want to read, some art to admire,  handmade items to cherish, or even locally produced food.

The site www.handmade-canada.com is also a WordPress blog, so feel free to follow along and discover some talent that has been home grown here in Canada.

 

Why I blog “issues” (plus a letter to Transport Canada Regarding Dodge Safety)

I have had an afternoon and evening of clarity. Sometimes removing yourself from the confines of the box you live in makes you see situations from a different angle.

My first revelation came at my daughter’s basketball game. Watching the girls bump into each other made me think again about our issue with the Dodge Caravan and how if you lose power you will have a chance of being rear ended.  (More on this later into the post.)

The second revelation came during yoga class, an apt environment to achieve clarity, and the revelation that came to me was that I need to share with the readers “Why I Blog Issues”. So I am going to start with that.

And then I also had a third…..

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WHY I BLOG ISSUES

I am sure some people think “loud mouth”, “trouble maker” and “moaner” when they read a post about an issue, and everyone is capable of having their own response and opinions, however in my case that is not why I write about issues.

I write about issues because society has become apathetic. People care more about watching “Breaking Bad” than their municipalities, the environment, fairness or health and safety. Because society is so apathetic, both private sector and government have become absolutely corrupt. Laws, by-laws, zoning, the environment, fairness, safety, honesty, and operating “in good faith” are no longer of any interest to some levels of government and definitely of no interest to “big corp”. Corruption is rampant because no one takes on the corrupt operations of big business. Corruption is never ending because no one makes governments follow their own rules. Yes there are pocket groups and petitions, but the bulk of society is more bothered about playing Candy Crush than making our society fair, honest and just.

So this is why I write on issues such as Dodge selling faulty and dangerous vehicles, Wawanesa having horrific handling of our insurance claim, issues with the school system where children weren’t taught (or were bullied), issues with Land Use By-laws where neighbourhoods and environment would be destroyed, and issues with regards to saving habitat; I write on these topics as both private and public sector are corrupt. I don’t write because I want a “freebee” or to “moan”. I write because someone has to tackle the corruption that surrounds us. I write because we are all being harmed by corrupt “big corp” and corrupt government actions. I write because it is about time someone actually did something and said something. I write because it is time to stop corruption and live in a fair, honest and just world, not the cess-pit it has become .

So that , in a nutshell, is why I blog issues.

I blog issues because it is the right thing to do.

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DODGE SAFETY ISSUE

Now for my second revelation. As I was saying, I was watching my daughter’s basketball game, and the girls bumping into each other made me think again about our issue with the Dodge Caravan. I was thinking about the fact that if you are driving a vehicle that  loses power there is a chance of being rear ended, injured or killed. Then it dawned on me that the innocent driver behind you could also be injured or killed. The big picture became apparent to me in one huge technicolor vision of destruction…….this is not just a Dodge Grand Caravan issue , this a a transportation hazard . This is a transportation hazard that has the potential to injure or kill any driver on the road.

The issue was no longer about “my” vehicle, and the fact that it is faulty beyond belief. This is no longer about me being “petty” and thinking a new vehicle should actually work and not be in for constant repair. Yes, every aspect of dealing with this vehicle has been rubbish , from dealing with Chrysler, dealing with the manager at our dealership and dealing with the salesman at our dealership….and all that will come out in another blog post…….but at the moment the issue is safety.

Now here is the scary thought. My vehicle lost power. My vehicle’s MIL light came on. My vehicle dinged and dinged and dinged in warning. I had NO idea what a MIL light even was up until Friday afternoon. As soon as the vehicle limped it’s way into the school parking lot I hunted through the manual to figure out what was up and then called my husband to be rescued. The dealership looked at our vehicle and said first that their computer said the “MIL light didn’t come on”, and secondly that they “could not replicate the problem”. Now the MIL light did come on. The van did lose power. The dealership is missing the “real” problem. The real problem is that Chrysler has a dangerous fault in their vehicles that could cause fatalities that they can’t detect and that they can’t fix. That is a problem. That is a very big problem.

This means that vehicles with the issue are being plopped back out on the road. That means vehicles are ending up in collisions and Chrysler’s service teams can’t even detect the fault in an inquiry in a vehicle fatality. Chrysler are putting out death traps because their computer can’t detect the problem. Chrysler put more faith in their computer than their customers who are actually driving the vehicles. Chrysler is risking lives because they think their computer knows best and never makes a mistake. How many have died because they “couldn’t replicate the problem”?

How can Chrysler even argue with this? They don’t even have the technology in their service departments to detect the issue, let alone fix it…..and definitely not the capacity to care.

Perhaps it is time to look at all the mini van fatalities involving Dodge Grand Caravans. Perhaps it is time to look at the circumstances. Perhaps it is time for Chrysler to both admit they have a huge problem and rectify it.

Picture of my son after being in an accident in a 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan

Picture of my son after being in an accident in a 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan

 

Revelation #3 – Did this happen before?

This revelation came to me on my way home from yoga (in my husband’s work truck as I will not even touch our “new” 2014 Grand Caravan, it is at the dealership). I never really blogged that much about the accident we had back in September, quite honestly I was happy my children were alive. It was an accident that made no sense, I was making a left turn with lots of time, clear intersection and then “Bam” hit so hard the van was written off. Now up until a couple of hours ago my thought was “the other vehicle must have been flying” , now I am wondering “did I lose power?” I will never know, it happened that fast, but now it will always be at the back of my mind. A 2014 van, 6 months old, an accident that made no sense. In hindsight I am really left wondering.

Dealing With the Big Picture

As I was getting nowhere with Chrysler or our dealership I had to do something. This is a public safety issue. People are going to be killed and Chrysler is going to hide behind either their computer or “we couldn’t replicate the problem”. It may sound dramatic, but lives ARE at risk. In the end my solution was to write to Minister Raitt at Transport Canada. I need the problem on record. The problem needs to be looked into. If the Dodge Grand Caravan is truly “Canada’s best selling mini van” as advertised, there are a lot of potential death traps on the road.

This is my email:

Att. Transport Canada
Minister Raitt

Dear Minister Raitt,

I am finding myself contacting you as we have an issue that could have an impact regards to safety on Canada’s roads and highways.

We have a new 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan purchased in October 2014. Serial number xxxxxx. On Friday we were driving, the van loses power, the MIL light comes on and the van starts dinging. We take it to our dealership as you do with any warranty issue. Their computer doesn’t show the MIL coming on, plus they say they “can’t replicate the problem”.

A car losing power on the road is a hazard for both the driver of the faulty vehicle and the vehicles behind the faulty vehicle. This technical issue is going to result in injuries and deaths. This technical difficulty isn’t being detected by the service departments.

Our dealership seems to think it isn’t a problem as does Dodge. We have been in contact with both. The worry here is it IS happening and they aren’t detecting the technical issue in the service department. This means even in a fatality inquiry the issue won’t be detected.

Once I got over my initial anger of the issue, I realized the broader scope of how dangerous this is. The potential to lose power and thus be rear ended will inevitably end in fatalities. I want to drive in safe vehicles. I want to be on the road with safe vehicles.

I felt I had to formally get on record that this issue is happening. Perhaps you can take this concern in whatever direction necessary to insure we are driving in and with safe vehicles.

By the way I have blogged details of our experience at: https://htheblog.wordpress.com/2015/03/03/we-need-to-replicate-the-problem-dont-buy-dodge-it-will-potentially-kill-you/

Debra Hunter

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So now you know “why” I blog issues, it is not for me, it is for all of us, and it is for the right reasons.

Deb

Please click here to read the previous detailed post of all the problems our Dodge Grand Caravan has had.

 

 

 

“We need to replicate the problem.” – Don’t buy Dodge, it will potentially kill you.

“We need to replicate the problem.” This is the official statement from Dodge. This is a statement with regards to LOSING POWER WHILE DRIVING. But this is their official statement.

So let me tell you the tale of our minivan. Our NEW Dodge Grand Caravan. A tale I hadn’t told due to the ongoing hassle with Wawanesa, but as it shows a similar “big corp” disregard for customer safety and well being it is time to tell the story. I also feel it is necessary to get the problem out on the public forum so others know that there is this issue with the vans. Recalls only happen after deaths.

We bought a Dodge Grand Caravan in Mid October 2014. Brand new from Southside in Red Deer, Alberta. The van isn’t 5 months old yet. This is our second 2014 Grand Caravan, our first one had no problems at all, but was written off while I was traveling 10 km/h (tells you how fast the other car was going!).

Here is a detail of everything that has gone wrong in the last four months:

1)U-Connect Mic – The van started out with a niggly problem of the mic in the U-Connect system not working. A slight problem when having a hands free system means you need to hold your phone to talk. THREE trips to the dealership and the problem was eventually fixed.

2)Heat Stuck On High – Three separate incidents of the heat being stuck on full blown high on the passenger side. Imagine driving over 3000 kms with one temperature….”hotter than hell”. We had items in the glove box that melted. Melted. Of course it happened THREE times intermittently before it could be fixed at the dealership because they “have to replicate the problem”.

3) Tire Pressure Light – comes on and off at will…..I was told it was normal

……..but this isn’t all

4) Burning Rubber Smell – it comes and it goes, a strong burning rubber smell, burning in a vehicle probably isn’t good, or maybe it is Chrysler’s version of a “new car smell”. Everyone just shrugs when we mention burning smell. Perhaps the vehicle needs to go up in flames like a Guy Fawke’s bonfire for them to “replicate the problem”.

5) U-Connect Cuts Out While Streaming – this is STILL happening. The further you drive the worse it gets. It seems as the van heats up it cuts out more and more. Coming back from the coast last week by Salmon Arm it was cutting out once per song, by Calgary it was FIVE times in a three minute song. Yes we’ve tried to “replicate the problem”, I even drove around for an HOUR BEFORE taking the car to the dealership to warm it up, it was cutting out. Serviced person gets into the van, we do a 2 km drive, it cuts out while he is looking in the glove box not paying attention and missed it. WE REPLICATED THE PROBLEM, but the service person missed it.

We were also told the cutting out was due to the areas we were driving, so that would be….Red Deer, Calgary, Edmonton, Banff, Golden, Revelstoke, Sicamous, Salmon Arm, Kamloops, Merritt, Hope, Abbotsford, Langley, Vancouver, Victoria and Pender Island , plus ALL the connecting routes. Tops of mountains, at sea level,probably the only place it doesn’t happen is on the ferry….because the van isn’t turned on.

Chrysler Canada’s solution for the U-Connect streaming issue was to “USE A CORD”. Yep. Take your phone. Plug in a $4 cord. Listen that way. Trick is to “Use A Cord” you need to TURN OFF BLUETOOTH……and answer your phone WITH YOUR HANDS. Chrysler’s version of “hands free”. Clearly safety or abiding by the law while driving is no concern of Chrysler (which will be proven in the next entry).

……. the piece de resistance

6) CAR LOSING POWER – yep, you heard it here first. I was driving to pick the kids up from school on Friday. I get to the intersection of 39th street and 43rd avenue, turn the corner and no power. No matter how hard I press down the accelerator I can’t get above 30 km/h. I am praying no one rear ends me. The “MIL” light is flashing, the van is dinging, I can’t drive properly, I have a pre-schooler in the back seat, and I am going to get rear ended if someone isn’t watching. The van is powerless. The van limps down the road, gets to the school with not even enough power to park it; I leave it diagonal in the first spot and apologize to the father parked next to me. I call my husband to rescue us. He leaves a customer at the office. I am NOT putting my kids in a vehicle that loses power only to be rear ended and have my whole family killed. I am not that stupid.

After a big phone palaver (at this point we are beyond insanely unhappy) with both Chrysler and Southside we come up with this solution. My kids ARE NOT going back in the van. No way. My husband loads the kids in his WORK truck and drives them home, while I drive the van home. We then leave our 16 year old watching his four siblings. The plan is that I drive the van to Southside, my husband drives behind watching in case I lose power. I go to start the van, the whole instrument panel flashes and quits. This is new. I start it a second time and it doesn’t flash. We drive through downtown and up Spruce Drive avoiding any routes where there is any amount of speed. Going up Spruce Drive I tested the power, put my foot down as you do in the mountain passes, the tackometer would soar, the van wouldn’t go above 50 km/h. This isn’t right. This is a new vehicle, by the end of the year we will be putting on about 24,000 km through mountain passes alone, we need to go UPHILL and fast, the speed limit on the Coquihalla is 120km/h, we need to be able to get above 50-60 km/h.

We drop off our van at Southside, choose not to take a courtesy vehicle as they will use that as an excuse to drag out the whole situation, and spend the WHOLE WEEKEND STUCK AT HOME VEHICLELESS……while our “new” van is in the shop again.

Before I continue, let’s do a recap on how many times this “new” vehicle has been in the shop:

– 3 times for the mic
-at least twice (once for verification) for the heat issue (possibly one more time, I’ve lost count)– I think twice for the cutting in and out, it has been ongoing so one visit may have been combined with a heater visit
– the current visit with the loss of power

That is a minimum of SEVEN TIMES IN THE SHOP IN LESS THAN FIVE MONTHS……….for a new vehicle…..”new vehicle”.

…..but it gets better

Now it is Monday, I am still car-less, even though I own a “new vehicle”. All day long, no car. My husband is taking time from work to run the kids around, running them around in his work’s ROOFING TRUCK. This is why you buy a “new vehicle”. Soooooooo…….. we hear from the dealership, they “can’t replicate the problem”. Of course. They also say ” The computer doesn’t show the MIL light came on.” and to fix it they “need to replicate the problem”. Really……. I’m sorry, I was driving, the light did come on and the van did lose power and it is beyond dangerous because if you are driving at the speed limit and the person behind you is doing the same and you suddenly lose power well, you get rear ended and can end up DEAD.

….but the computer says the light didn’t go on and they can’t “replicate the problem”….so that is how life is…..a $10 circuit board encased in plastic with a flashy light knows more about what is going on that the person that experienced the problem.

So we get into it with Dodge on their Canadian Facebook site, we are done. SIX separate issues in less than 5 months and now it is becoming dangerous. EVENTUALLY W. at Chrysler gets back to my husband who has been leaving messages about the problems for what seems like an eternity (but is in fact less than 5 months).

Let me give you the highlights of the conversation:

– they need to “replicate the problem” which means someone is going to have to get in a vehicle, drive it so that it loses power, get rear-ended and be maimed or killed all in the effort of following  company policy to “replicate the problem”

– when my husband says it isn’t safe to have someone drive our vehicle it is mentioned that the service people have liability insurance…….what does that matter if a husband, wife, father or mother is killed…………..this complete disregard for safety of the public and their employees is shocking. Another case of “profit over people”, with “big corp” people are disposable.

– W. at Chrysler took offense when my husband called it a lemon and said we can’t say that. Ahem. SIX separate problems in less than FIVE months, some that Chrysler’s solution is “use a cable” because they can’t fix it. What constitutes a problem….the engine dropping out or all the wheels simultaneously dropping off? What is Chrysler’s bench mark for a “lemon”?

– W. said they aren’t in the business of buying back vehicles. So Chrysler can sell you a vehicle that doesn’t work properly, Chrysler can sell you a vehicle that they can’t fix, Chrysler can sell you a vehicle that isn’t safe…….and it is your problem. The consumer’s money wasted, the consumer’s well being put at risk. CHRYSLER WILL NOT STAND BEHIND THEIR PRODUCTS. This is the theme of “big corp”, screw your customer and put them at risk, the consumer doesn’t matter just billions in the bank.

– As I refuse to take a “rental vehicle”…… I am completely unrealistic in the eyes of Chrysler, I am unrealistic to  expect that if I buy a NEW vehicle I might actually be able to DRIVE IT and DRIVE IT SAFELY ( I know, what the heck am I thinking!)

…….and so the van sits at the dealership

………I’m not driving a deathtrap

…….. I am car-less

……….I “own” a new vehicle that isn’t safe to drive

………I can’t take my kids to school

……… I can’t pick my kids up from school

……… I can’t take my son to work

………. I can’t go grocery shopping

……….I am stuck at home…………………with my computer………………and what I can do is hit social media with this ridiculous situation

 

The list price on the vehicle was around $30K.

$30K to have an un-driveable “new” vehicle.……well driveable if you want to risk your life ……………..mere insignificant detail!

—————————-

And now I am going to tell you the rest of the story:

We have owned several Dodge Grand Caravans, a 1998, 2003, 2010, and two 2014’s. I am going to share the story of our 2010. Our 2010 van was “OK”. Yes the engine was under-powerd (proven in the stats sheet for horse-power) and it had to go in for the ignition problem (recall), but it was okay. And then we started to have a few weird issues one was the radio cutting in and out and the other was the heat sometimes worked and sometimes didn’t. We were just out of warranty when these two things started happening so my guess is sometime in 2012 or 2013. At first the problems were intermittent, and then they happened more and more. You could fool the heating into working by turning the dial up all the way then turning back so that it was positioned in between blowing levels. The radio we solved by streaming our iPod through a portable “bem” speaker ( I had lost confidence and wasn’t putting a new radio into the van).

So let me share my very last trip in my 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan van. March 2014, we are headed to the west coast with our five children for spring break. We are driving down the QE2 and notice the heat is really iffy, the “trick” is no longer working, we try to find the sweet spot where it will work. We reach Calgary, take the Stony Trail, and as we are going past the Costco I say to my husband it isn’t driving right, the power isn’t there. He tried to tell me it was the hill and maybe it was windy, but it was more than that, the way the van was driving was wrong. We continue on to the Trans Canada and head west. We stop at Deadman’s Flats for gas. We fill up. We go to start the vehicle. NOTHING. FLAT. DEAD. We are stuck at the gas station which is in a community of another gas station and a couple of run down motels. As our family does not fit in the tow truck we wait FOUR hours to be rescued. The van is towed to the Dodge dealership in Olds,AB , we are told it will be three weeks for a part. Heating doesn’t work, radio doesn’t work, van doesn’t go. We cut our losses and buy a new 2014.

“That” new 2014 worked, but was written off in an accident in September.

I can’t help but go back to our experience from close to a year ago and make comparisons. Both vans have had heating problems, both vans have had radio/u-connect problems, both vans have lost power when driving. That is one heck of a coincidence. Actually, it isn’t a coincidence it is a PATTERN, or perhaps a SYMPTOM, that is is only a matter of time that if the loss of power doesn’t kill us, the van will simply die and leave us stranded.

———–Tuesday morning update—————-

Chrysler Facebooks me to say that they will call us this morning but they have to take down the Facebook post as it uses an employees name. So guess what, it is now 12:15 Alberta time….2:15 pm down east…..yes PM….and NO PHONE CALL! Clearly the post was taken down due to the utterly rubbish customer service and the fact Chrysler and their employees don’t feel confident in either the service they provide or the product they sell.This company is one lie after another and can’t even manage a phone call when they promise it…..and if they say they are busy……..why the heck are so many of the vehicles you building NOT working? It’s a good question.

——————–Tuesday Afternoon Update——————–

“Can not replicate problem”

Fourth day without a vehicle THIS TIME…..plus ALL the other times at the shop

—————–Summary—————-

I am not putting my kids in that death trap. It is sitting at the Southside dealership.

Thousands of dollars WASTED.

Dodge will sell you a vehicle, a new vehicle, but don’t be so unrealistic to think it will WORK.

————————————————–

Edited to add:

I have now emailed Transport Canada with the following email as this is a public safety concern for anyone driving on the roads with a 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan. The email reads:

March 3, 2015

Att. Transport Canada
Minister Raitt

Dear Minister Raitt,

I am finding myself contacting you as we have an issue that could have an impact regards to safety on Canada’s roads and highways.

We have a new 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan purchased in October 2014. Serial number xxx. On Friday we were driving, the van loses power, the MIL light comes on and the van starts dinging. We take it to our dealership as you do with any warranty issue. Their computer doesn’t show the MIL coming on, plus they say they “can’t replicate the problem”.

A car losing power on the road is a hazard for both the driver of the faulty vehicle and the vehicles behind the faulty vehicle. This technical issue is going to result in injuries and deaths. This technical difficulty isn’t being detected by the service departments.

Our dealership seems to think it isn’t a problem as does Dodge. We have been in contact with both. The worry here is it IS happening and they aren’t detecting the technical issue in the service department. This means even in a fatality inquiry the issue won’t be detected.

Once I got over my initial anger of the issue, I realized the broader scope of how dangerous this is. The potential to lose power and thus be rear ended will inevitably end in fatalities. I want to drive in safe vehicles. I want to be on the road with safe vehicles.

I felt I had to formally get on record that this issue is happening. Perhaps you can take this concern in whatever direction necessary to insure we are driving in and with safe vehicles.

By the way I have blogged details of our experience at: https://htheblog.wordpress.com/2015/03/03/we-need-to-replicate-the-problem-dont-buy-dodge-it-will-potentially-kill-you/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wawanesa Thinks (potential) Asbestos and Families is a Great Mix! (Twice!!!)

Is your insurance company putting your health at risk?

Is your insurance company putting you, the insured, in harm’s way due to their policies?

These are questions you never thought you would ponder when dealing with house insurance, but this is exactly what we are dealing with now.

Remember all the problems we have had with Wawanesa and their HANDLING of our insurance claim? You can view the posts here and here . This led to Wawanesa forcing us to do THIS if we had any hope of a claim. The “THIS” was us, the amateurs, completely opening up the cabin to look for a cause for the water damage as the professionals that looked at the cabin in October 2014 refused to look. At that time we thought having the insured strip back a building full of water, and opening up walls potentially full of electrical and water, was both insane and lacked ethics and business common sense. I remember saying to our broker, while sitting in our broker’s office “Do they want to kill us?”. He said no, yet was puzzled by the handling of our claim by Wawanesa.

Luckily the mix of electrical and water didn’t electrocute us and our five children on the spot. Perhaps this was a great disappointment to Wawanesa, perhaps not. Yet now we realize we aren’t “out of the woods”. Now we are dealing with the potential of EXPOSURE TO ASBESTOS due to Wawanesa’s handling of our claim.

wawanesa insurance makes homeowner do own exploration 2Remember this picture? This picture was in the blog post discussing our visit to the cabin on November 23, 2014. This picture was also sent in a set of four DVD’s sent to Wawanesa offices in both Edmonton, Alberta and Winnipeg, Manitoba (head office). This picture shows where my husband has fallen through old tiles that were hidden under the laminate when we were forced by Wawanesa to do our own exploration on our cabin if we wanted any hope of making a claim. We had to try, you need to protect your investment.

Last Saturday, February 21st 2015, we went back to the cabin with a new adjuster, restoration crew, and engineer to take another look at our cabin. They started to look for access points to look at the foundation to see just what was happening under floor level (makes sense)………. and then we hit a snag. They noticed the tiles. Tiles of a certain age, an age when some tiles contained asbestos. The engineer has a mask on. The adjuster has a mask on. My husband, myself and the restoration crew DID NOT HAVE MASKS ON. Exploring through the floor stops; they can’t cut until they know “if” there is asbestos in the tile.

They bag a sample of the tile. They tell us we will know in two days if there was asbestos in the tile.

The sample was bagged on February 21st, 2015. It was a weekend so realistically I thought we would hear by end of the day on Tuesday (February 24th). We received no phone call or email.

On Wednesday….no call or email.

On Thursday….no call or email.

On Friday….no call or email.

On Saturday, a week later, not two days as initially mentioned….no call or email.

The silence is deafening. Why aren’t we hearing the result?

I admit I am quite anxious to know if we are dealing with asbestos. We picked these tiles up with our hands, I fell through them (thus laid down on all these crumbling broken tiles), our children shuffled over them. If there is asbestos this is very, very bad.

Here is the Government of Canada’s information sheet on asbestos.

Here is what the Government of Canada indicates the health risks are:

When inhaled in significant quantities, asbestos fibres can cause asbestosis (a scarring of the lungs which makes breathing difficult), mesothelioma (a rare cancer of the lining of the chest or abdominal cavity) and lung cancer.

It doesn’t sound good does it?

Imagine “if” it is asbestos our whole family, including five children aged 4,7,10,12 and 16 , have been exposed.

blog cabin family

The potential to be placed in a position of exposure once is bad enough.

An insurance company should NEVER place their insured in a situation where their health and well being are compromised. That is unethical and morally irresponsible no matter what the fine print in a policy states. (By the way, as of today we still have no proof as to where the water came from that damaged the cabin, but the rusted screw directly in front of the drain pipe where the worst damage occurred is awfully suspicious.)

blog drainpipe_9360 detail 1blog drainpipe_9360

Putting the insured in harm’s way for a SECOND time is inexcusable. But that is exactly what Wawanesa did.

Wawanesa could argue “we didn’t know there was tile” with regards to our visit on November 23rd, 2014. Yes they knew we were dealing with a dangerous mix of electrical and water, but their justification was probably “At least it will kill them quick!”. Not a problem in the eyes of insurance. They were probably hoping a good electrocution would kill us and our kids so no survivors could come after them in a lawsuit. My guess is the goal was extermination.

However Wawanesa sent us into the cabin for a SECOND time KNOWING there was a potential risk that we would be exposed to ASBESTOS.

On February 21st, 2015 we attended the cabin with the adjuster and his crew, while Wawanesa KNEW the property contained old tile with the potential risk of containing asbestos. How did they know? Well first there was the picture in the blog post. Hundreds upon hundreds of you have seen it. Secondly I sent a set of four DVD’s sent to Wawanesa offices in both Edmonton, Alberta and Winnipeg, Manitoba  that contained video and stills of the area, video that actually included me falling through these tiles that have a potential to contain asbestos. The tiles are clearly visible, the tiles are clearly the vintage of potentially containing asbestos, yet Wawanesa ignores the fact that this building product has the potential to be incredibly harmful and sends us to the property for a second exposure to a potentially hazardous material. Wawanesa are in the business of assessing risk, risk involved with properties, plus risk involved with health and well being with regards to Wawanesa Life, yet they CHOSE to put the INSURED AT RISK.

Wawanesa must hate their customers so much that if electrocution doesn’t work, that they they consciously choose to put their clients in contact with substances known to cause cancer. Are Wawanesa hoping for a slow, painful agonizing death?

So Wawanesa hates their insured, the people that allow them to makes millions or billions in profits, I get that . It is blatantly obvious. I’m still paying my monthly premiums on three residences, a business and a vehicle just so that I can have the pleasure of having the option of either being electrocuted or die of cancer at the hands of the handling of our insurance claim by Wawanesa. I know sadomasochism is “in”, it’s “50 Shades of Wawanesa”…….now we know where a former CBC radio host could be working. But not only did they put us in a potentially hazardous situation for a second time, they also put the workers with the restoration crew. They also were in the property, with broken crumbling ancient tiles, breathing in air with the potential to contain asbestos. This is how Wawanesa treats their trades. Are the tradespeople  also disposable to Wawanesa?

Wawanesa had the video and the pictures of the tile (at the Edmonton AND Head Office in Winnipeg) and they CHOSE to send the insured and the trades into a potentially hazardous situation.

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One last little tidbit. When we had our case assigned to a new adjuster my husband asked if he had all the information as to what had happened with this property. He replied that he had a file two inches thick. On Saturday February 21st, 2015 we discovered he had NEVER BEEN GIVEN THE VIDEO. Wawanesa is back to their old tricks of manipulating a situation. They WITHHELD  the video which showed all the exploration including the POTENTIALLY HAZARDOUS TILE. If Wawanesa had been honest and transparent and had given the new adjuster all the information the new adjuster could have prevented both my husband and myself, and the restoration crew from entering a potentially toxic zone. But Wawanesa chose to continue to play their games.

Wawanesa can’t be trusted.

Wawanesa chooses to put their insured in harm’s way.

Wawanesa values profits over people.

“If property insurance doesn’t protect your property or investment why have it? Then it is just a scam.”

Food for thought.

I encourage others to learn from our experience and evaluate the company you are insured with. No one should have to go through what we have.

I wonder “if” and “when” we will find out if the tiles contain asbestos.

 

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Wawanesa COMPLETELY IGNORES Insurance Issue ( Wawanesa Ombudsman supports lies and fictionalizes a second cause)

Does anyone remember a blog post from a few days ago? Remember the one about our cabin?Remember the insurance report that lied about when we found the issue, lied about the construction of our cabin, and the construction and restoration crew (sent by the insurance industry) that refused to look for the problem.

Yes…it rings a bell doesn’t it.

It probably was the blog post that made you think back to your own insurance claims where you were royally screwed. It was the blog post that made you kick yourself because you are now wondering what lies were written in the report. Seriously I didn’t mean to give you sleepless nights. I didn’t mean to induce another ulcer. I did want everyone to be aware of just what is going on through my OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCE.

If you would like to read the original post click HERE!!!!!!!!

 

But before we get to the fun let’s share another piece of relevant information. On Friday November 14th  I sent out the original blog post to SEVEN different people/departments at WAWANESA to express my concern regarding how our claim was being handled. NOT A SINGLE PERSON FROM WAWANESA HAS EVEN TRIED TO CONTACT US.

NOT OUR ADJUSTER.

NOT THE ADJUSTER’S MANAGER.

NOT ANY OF THE OTHER MANAGERS.

NO ONE.

Not a phone call. Not an email. Not a smoke signal. Nothing. (But we DO know Wawanesa knows about it thanks to our very awesome broker……it is great that someone is AWESOME!)

So in the spirit of consumer protection, I am including below the email I sent  so everyone will know who will actually ignore you and never get back to you at Wawanesa. Feel free to click on the below image to view full size.

blog email(click on image to view full size!)

In actual fact the only interested parties were our broker and “The Office of Consumer Affairs”. Wawanesa did not contact us all week long.

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Oh wait, breaking news……..  minutes ago I received an email from Wawanesa’s Northern Alberta Ombuds service after no contact at all all week long. I will include it just below, click on it to enlarge:

ombudsman letter

We’ll discuss this email in a moment. But before I get to it, continue reading.

Today I received this, the letter indicating Wawanesa will not be covering our loss:

blog letter received november 20 2014

Would you like to have a read? The whole package we received is scanned below. Please click on the images to view full size. I am all about honesty and transparency.

I am now going to share a few highlights with you.

T&L letter page 1 detail 1Let’s review the dates. On September 29th the “independent adjuster ” came out looked around, took a statement, took a few pictures and told US to “find the source”. Our broker told us he has never heard of the insured being told by the insurance company that they are the ones who have to find the source; he says this is unheard of.

On October 4th we went and tried to find “the source”, found fresh water, took tons of pictures and tried by phone to contact every resource we could in the insurance industry to give us guidance. The only one interested was our broker. We couldn’t even register information with Wawanesa.

On October 25th the “independent adjuster” and the representative from Titan Construction drove out to our cabin together in the ‘independent adjuster’s” vehicle. They looked around, took some pictures and agreed to send out a construction crew to LOOK FOR THE SOURCE. Then they went for lunch together.

On OCTOBER 29TH, 2014 , a date OMITTED FROM THE TOWNSEND AND LEEDHAM letter posted above, the construction crew came to the cabin and wrote the report that deemed the claim to be denied. My previous blog post will outline and share the letter, but to give you four main points :
1 – they LIED about when we discovered the problem (we discovered it the weekend of September 7th, 2014, they said approximately 2 years ago….we have a blog post to prove it)
2 – they LIED about the construction of the cabin (they said we have foam underlay….we don’t…their pictures prove it)
3 – they REFUSED to look for the source – the source was never found because the CREW that was sent BY THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY REFUSED TO LOOK (and then this information was omitted in the above letter)

4 – to quote their report that caused the claim to be denied …”My theory is this is a condensation issue.” THEORY. The claim is denied on a “theory”…a guess…..a guess because they refused to look for the source (report viewable below, please click to view larger). However the cause in the “report” is listed as “condensation” but the letter today from the very same independent adjuster who agreed to the condensation claim on November 14, 2014 is now stating “seepage and leakage” as the cause even though this was NEVER MENTIONED in the very report he is using for denial. The report resulting from Titan Construction’s visit to the site of the claim on October 29th, 2014. The date and information was COMPLETELY OMITTED from the letter we received today from Townsend & Leedham Adjusters Ltd (of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada).

Why was this information omitted in the letter today? Why can’t the insurance industry stick to FACTS and TRUTH. Why can’t they be TRANSPARENT and HONEST?

Just to be thorough, the November 14th date was the date the “independent adjuster” told my husband Mark over the phone that the claim was denied. The independent adjuster who will never reply by email so that we have information in writing and always calls us on a “blocked” phone number. We can’t trace emails, we can’t trace phone calls, plus we have misrepresentation of the claim and lies on the report, and then a whole new cause manufactured on the letter dated November 14, 2014  from Townsend & Leedham Adjusters Ltd……….impressive isn’t it.

So remember the lie on the report about when we found the damage? Here is that page of the report (click to view full size).blog insurance report page 2

Guess what surfaced in the letter today……………

T&L letter page 1 detail 2….why the quotations? Do you see it? I will help you…….

“An action or proceeding against an insurer under a contract must be commenced, in the case of loss of damage to insured property, not later than 2 years after the date the insured knew or ought to have known that the loss or damage occurred.”

We knew about the damage in September of 2014. They flat out LIED in the report. We are being called LIERS, the report is SLANDERING us.  I am sorry but Mr. Hunter DID NOT CONFIRM that he put in the shims approximately 2 years ago….it was September 2014…we have the Home Depot credit card record to prove it.

Just for fun read the wording again…….this part……. “or ought to have known that the loss or damage occurred.”.  How can anyone “ought to have known”? In our case it was COMPLETELY CONCEALED plus there was no evidence of an excessive amount of water being consumed to create damage (you’ll understand this when you read the very end of the blog post). The source is still concealed because Wananesa and their associates REFUSED to look for “the source”.

Let me ask you, are you required to climb up on your own roof to assess hail damage? Are you required to play with your home’s wiring after an electrical fire? Are you required to track down the criminal after your house has been broken into, or find the arsonist that burnt your house down? Probably not, but this is what they expect us to do.

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Let’s continue.

Let’s move on to today’s email from Wawanesa’s Northern Alberta Ombuds service. I’ll paste it again here, click to enlarge.

T&L letter page 1Let me show you a close up:

ombudsman detail

The Wawanesa’s Northern Alberta Ombuds service has deemed the damage to be caused by “continuous seepage and leakage”. Hmmm, yet the “report” that caused the claim to be denied  declared, and I quote, “My theory is this is a condensation issue.” Which is it? “Continuous seepage and leakage” wasn’t in the report. I just checked. The term “seepage” and the term “leakage” are NOT USED AT ALL IN THE REPORT. In the time span from November 14th to today November 20th the Wawanesa’s Northern Alberta Ombuds service has FICTIONALIZED, perhaps with the assistance of the TOWNSEND & LEEDHAM adjuster, A WHOLE NEW REASON FOR THE DAMAGE WITHOUT ANYONE EVER HAVING SET FOOT IN THE CABIN.

Compare the paperwork included in this blog.

THEY MADE IT UP TOO.

THERE IS NOTHING IN THE REPORT TO SUPPORT THEIR CLAIM OF DENIAL. THE REPORT STATED “CONDENSATION”, IT NEVER MENTIONED “LEAKAGE OR SEEPAGE”.

The Wawanesa’s Northern Alberta Ombuds service made up this information (perhaps with the assistance of the Townsend & Leedham adjuster) just like the report made up when we discovered the issue and made up that we have foam underlay. There is no proof or information in the report to verify this claim. Surely the ombudsman would at least look at the report responsible for denying this claim.

WHERE DO THE LIES END?

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So let’s refer back :

I would like to point out that “the source” has NEVER been  discovered. We DO NOT KNOW IT IS SEEPAGE OR LEAKAGE BECAUSE THEY REFUSED TO LOOK. The Wawanesa’s Northern Alberta Ombuds service has based their decision on this:

blog cut holesTwo tiny cuts in the wall. This is the ONLY EXPLORATION the insurance industry would do. Evidently this is the only place that water supply lines run in our cabin in their professional opinion. Let me share a diagram.

blog bathroom graphic

This is our bathroom. The tiny orange area is the only area they cut to look. Somehow water mysteriously gets from our pump house to this area without supply lines according to the insurance industry. Can someone tell me how the exploration is at all fair? Water runs to the kitchen, to the bathroom sink, to the toilet and to the shower yet the ONLY place they cut open was in front of the hot water tank.

The “source” has NEVER been found because WAWANESA REFUSED TO LOOK. UNFAIR. We have a “theory” of condensation and then the “out of thin air revelation” by the ombudsman and Townsend & Leedham of “leakage and seepage”.

Surely after paying for insurance for YEARS on THREE DIFFERENT PROPERTIES (at the same time!) we at least should be granted the fairness of them LOOKING and ASSESSING the situation fairly.

WAWANESA REFUSES TO LOOK FOR THE PROBLEM and are ASSUMING…….ASSUMING……it is “continuous seepage and leakage” (wherever they got that information from). They have NO PROOF because they REFUSE to look and “continuous seepage and leakage” wasn’t even in the report. This has been fictionalized by the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service after a panic decision by Townsend & Leedham to include it in their letter of denial with no proof of it whatsoever.

This claim has been denied on lies and assumptions and Wawanesa’s Northern Alberta Ombuds service SUPPORTS THESE LIES AND ASSUMPTIONS.

Did the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service address the LIES about when we discovered the damage – NO.

Did the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service address the LIES about construction of the cabin – NO.

Did the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service address the fact that exploration for the source was NEVER DONE to a satisfactory level – NO.

Has the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service ever seen the cabin or the situation – NO.

Has the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service even talked to us – NO.

Did the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service endorse the fictionalized  cause to be “continuous seepage and leakage” – YES!!!!!!! It wasn’t even listed as a cause in the report that denied our claim.

What a farce.

Wawanesa accepts lies and uses it as documentation. They deny a claim on assumptions and theories and fiction. Then the ombudsman pulls a whole new cause out of thin air , with the help of Townsend & Leedham, with no fact to substantiate it.

The report that they used to deny our claim was filled with lies. The lies we had addressed with our Wawanesa adjuster over the phone by our broker as we sat in his office. The lies were addressed in the previous blog post, with documentation of when we FOUND the problem in September 2014. Wawanesa knowingly accepted a report that they KNOW has lies in it to deny our claim.

Our insurance broker said that the insurance industry must have  code of ethics that they must follow. Is accepting outright lies part of the code of ethics? Is the ombudsman creating imaginary causes out of thin air (with assistance from Townsend & Leedham) with no proof at all ethical?  A blog post proves “discovery” was in September 2014. The insurance report pictures PROVE there is no “foam” in our cabin. Their own pictures. Check out the previous blog post for verification. Their own pictures discredit their own report. The report and the ombudsman deny the claim on completely different issues, without any proof.

I am sorry but when a company can’t even compare the pictures in their report to the words in the report, when the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service accepts a report with lies when we have addressed and proven otherwise, when the ombudsman fictionalizes a cause with no proof (with the help of Townsend & Leedham), and when an insurance claim denies on assumptions rather than fact, the company is one of two things….INCOMPETENT OR CORRUPT.

In the eyes of Wawanesa Insurance the insured is guilty until proven innocent.

We were never treated fairly.

To sum up the situation:

– Wawanesa accepted lies about when we discovered the damage – slander

– Wawanesa accepted lies about construction of our cabin – the lies are proven by cross referencing the pictures in the report compared to the words in the report

– Wawanesa REFUSED to do a thorough exploration (below is the only exploration carried out)

blog cut holes– Wawanesa denied a claim based on THEORIES listed in the report (phone call by the Townsend & Leedham adjuster on November 14th and the report he provided us) and then DENIED A CLAIM BASED ON MANUFACTURED FICTION  (the letter we received today “stated leakage and seepage” terms NEVER used in the report). Why even do a report if they are just going to create whole new causes out of thin air?

– the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service then denies the claim a second time on a FICTIONALIZED CAUSE, a cause never even mentioned in the report

Wawanesa also has never addressed this picture, the one of LOCALIZED water coming from somewhere. If they would have followed the water they would have found “the source” but they REFUSED to look. Wawanesa even REFUSED to put the picture in the report or address the issue even though they have had this picture sent directly to them in an email. They have refused to address this water even though their own “independent adjuster” and the construction crew, and the author of “the report”, have had their own hands in the puddle. Here is the picture:

blog moisture spotSoaking wet. Localized, not seepage. A puddle. This is the problem, it isn’t shown or talked about in the report. Nothing in the report, visually or written , accurately reflects the issue. Surely an insurance report is required to reflect the situation accurately. Surely an insurance report is required to tell the truth. What we have discovered is that the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service doesn’t care about truth or accuracy, it simple is a non issue….lies, lack of accuracy, refusing to find “the source, and assumptions and theories are the order of the day.

This situation is no longer just about “the claim” or “the water” or “the source”. This situation is now about SLANDER where a report LIES about when we found this problem. This situation is about LIES where a report LIES about the construction of our cabin. This situation is about MISREPRESENTATION of the actual claim by the independent adjuster and the report. This situation is about FAIRNESS and that every insured should be entitled to real exploration of the problem not the insurance industry refusing to look. This situation is about an insurance company so corrupt or incompetent that the report denies the claim on a “theory” of “condensation” while the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service denies the claim on “seepage and leakage” when that term wasn’t even in the report that caused the claim to be denied. The ombudsman denied the claim on a FICTIONALIZED CAUSE. The cause has never been found, the insurance industry refused to look.

Shouldn’t a report be based on the TRUTH?

Shouldn’t a report be based on FACT?

Shouldn’t the insured be treated FAIRLY?

Shouldn’t the report and Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service at least agree on why the claim is being denied. The Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service never looked at the cabin, never had any further information, they made it up. They decided to just come to another conclusion and pulled “leakage and seepage” out of thin air along with the help of the “Townsend & Leedham” and their sudden change of mind, it wasn’t even in the report. They are denying claims without even a fictionalized report to back them up. Pure fiction. The Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service denied coverage based on PURE FICTION.

Wawanesa does not base their claims on fact. Wawanesa does not base their claims on fairness. Wawanesa will do whatever it takes to wiggle out of a claim.

Code of ethics? I’ll let you decide.

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Cabin Water Information

Now let me share a little water information regarding our cabin, as it is quite interesting, and everyone refused to listen. The construction crew was stating condensation and groundwater even before they entered the cabin (as I said, never given a fair chance to show the real situation).

-First regarding “seepage and leakage”, the ground under the floor joists is bone dry and vented, the bottom joists are bone dry as well, the water damage has come from the top down. None of the pictures in the report show that , neither do the words.

– Second, the wet spot is localized. This much water can only be forming from a teeny tiny supply line, it is the only source of water. It isn’t the roof (no staining or swelling) and it isn’t coming in through the exterior walls (again no staining or swelling). It isn’t groundwater, the ground is dry beneath the joists.
 
The construction professional put their moisture meter inches from the wet spot and it showed “no moisture”. He cut a hole where it said “no moisture”. I put my hand in that hole and it was soaking wet. All that separated the moisture meter from soaking wet wood and insulation was 1/2 inch drywall….how can it show “no moisture”? Isn’t that curious?

The report deemed this wet spot to be condensation; how can condensation form when there is no heating, the space is vented, the wet area is completely open to the room, and the puddle ONLY FORMS WHEN THERE IS WATER IN THE SUPPLY LINES? “Condensation” is the cause listed in the “report” that caused our claim to be denied. How? (Please see the report below, click to enlarge.)

 

– Third, water is only accessed and available to the water supply lines May to October with an average usage of 12 two day weekends per year. Water only actively flows through the pipes of the cabin for 24 days a year. Otherwise there is no water available for seepage or leakage. This year we used 750 gallons ( I documented that we had 500 gallons left in an email to the independent adjuster) of water for a family of 7 including filling up a hot water tank (possibly 40 gallons). Let’s do the math:
750 gallons- 40 gallons =710 gallons of used water for the year (hot water tank was full)
710 gallons divided by 7 people is 101.43 gallons  of water per person for the year
101.43 gallons of water (per person) divided by 3 gallons (estimate) per toilet flush = 33.81 toilet flushes for the year for one person
33.81 toilet flushes divided by 24 days of use = 1.41 toilet flushes per person per day

***this doesn’t include hand washing, dishes washing or watering trees and plants

This damage isn’t continual leakage or seepage as we would be going through huge amounts of water. This can only be happening when we are actively using water ; a total of 24 days a year. Our water tank has the gallon markings on it, we would be able to watch it go down disproportionately. We can physically see the amount of water we use as we are on water haul. Our lines are only actively in use 24 days a year,  water is in the supply lines May to October until we drain off the water for winter. No water is available at all October to May. No water is accessible when we are not at the cabin May to October as the pump has the power turned off to it. The water holding tank is outside, if there was ever an issue it would simply water our lawn. Other than when we are in the cabin for 24 days a year, water is not being pumped through our supply lines.

blog empty water tank

The empty water tank behind our son. We would actually “see” the water going down if it was constant leakage and seepage.

 – Fourth- when the area was first opened up there wasn’t a massive amount of mold, you could find an odd teeny patch if you looked hard enough. This hasn’t been wet for years. The whole area would have been full of mold if this was a situation ongoing for years. The soaking wet sheeting used on the subfloor fell apart in your hands, a chip board type of composition, the top was discolored the center was wood colored. The water had dissolved it.

If anyone had bothered to assess  the situation and listen to us they would realize the construction does not allow for condensation and that the water system is only active approximately 24 days a year.

Instead we get theories and manufactured causes without proof from the Wawanesa Northern Alberta Ombuds service.

 

 

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Now I am also going to share another little “FYI” which Wawanesa really needs to take note of. When things like this happen I do send them out to the media, depending on my mood the odd blog post has gone out to over 100 outlets in an evening (by the way the total media sends aren’t all listed on the email above…I took a break to eat dinner!). They get exactly the same email that Wawanesa received. Wawanesa is probably sitting there saying “Squeeky wheel, moaning cow, no one is picking up this story, what a stupid (fill in the blank!)”. This is definitely the thought process as no one got back to us (until moments ago)…..but they are missing the point. I am not aiming for “media coverage”, I’m aiming for “water cooler gossip”. Think about it. “Water cooler gossip” is the most damning thing that exists. People embellish, over exaggerate a story, try to out do one another and essentially one little story has the potential to become urban myth. Even better, people hate dealing with insurance companies, the insured are treated like criminals, we are guilty until proven innocent , so they are going to LOVE a story like ours. Happily we are also approaching the “festive season”, happily we will  be mixing “water cooler gossip” with alcohol at company Christmas parties….this story has potential to grow legs of its own. People NEED to know this story.

Wawanesa had plenty of opportunity to stop this. We sent emails to our “independent adjuster” that were forwarded to our “Wawanesa adjuster”. We sat in our broker’s office while he attempted to bring the situation to our “Wawanesa’s adjuster’s” attention. We sent out the previous blog post. Attempt after attempt and COMPLETELY IGNORED.

Just how much bad press do they want, because the first post is receiving hundreds of views a day.

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Edited to add this LINK:

Wawanesa states on the third page of their 2013 Annual Report the following values:

VALUES
We treat others in a respectful and truthful manner.
We conduct business with integrity, honesty, consistency and fairness.
We act ethically and lawfully.
We take pride in making service a priority.
We encourage collaboration, innovation and excellence.
We support the communities in which we work and live
Spot the difference with what we have experienced!

Wawanesa Insurance Claim Denied Based on Lies – (Reasons to view your insurance report.)

cabinAnyone who has been following the blog for a while knows we have a cabin. You may also remember a certain discovery that we made in September of 2014. For anyone interested you can read the first blog entry HERE and the second one by clicking HERE. I am quickly discovering it is beneficial to describe a huge portion of our everyday life on my blog as it seems one needs evidence when a situation becomes unfair or someone chooses to state blatant lies against you. This is one of those times.

The short version of what you are about to read is we have had an insurance claim denied based on a report that actually contains LIES. We are now in the situation of “having nothing to lose”. If we have nothing to lose we NEED to SHARE THE SITUATION WITH THE PUBLIC so that they can protect themselves.

We have a cabin full of water. A cabin where we can now not correct the problem for 6 months because we are on a seasonal water system. A cabin where we can now not correct the problem because the insurance industry took their own sweet time over dealing with it even though we CONSTANTLY stressed it was time sensitive due to both weather and water supply. A cabin deteriorating by the day because the insurance industry REFUSED to look at where the problem REALLY is.

Originally the below text was going to be a letter to the supervising adjuster of our claim with Wawanesa. After careful thought I came to two conclusions. First the public needed to know what the INSURANCE INDUSTRY was doing and how straight out LIES are being written in the reports that are causing claims to be denied. Secondly, I had no interest in months of butt-covering excuses and being passed off from person to person in a game of bureaucratic musical chairs….a game known to try to make people give up. The fact is the insurance industry is playing a game, but when they step into the forum of telling lies, accepting lies, not cross-referencing information, and denying claims on reports that claim ACTUAL LIES ABOUT THE INSURED it is time to make the situation public.

EVERYONE NEEDS TO KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON.

EVERYONE NEEDS TO GET ACCESS TO THE REPORTS THAT THEIR INSURANCE CLAIMS DEPEND ON……OR YOU WILL BE VICTIMIZED LIKE US.

So let’s proceed. Here is the letter that earlier today was going to be sent to our Wawanesa adjuster who was overseeing  an independent adjuster from Townsend & Leedham out of Edmonton, Alberta. I have decided in turn to just forward her the blog post; it will be more explanatory.

The letter reads:

November 14, 2014
RE: Wawanesa Claim #969112
Dear Sirs,
I am writing in response to a report that was provided in which Wawanesa decided to use as a base to decline our claim.
In short we have a completely concealed water situation that still remains concealed to this day even after Wawanesa and their independent adjuster from Townsend & Leedham had sent out construction professionals from Titan, a construction and restoration firm, to explore the source of the damage. In short the two individuals refused to look for the source, were looking for excuses even before they entered the cabin as to why it wasn’t sudden or accidental and took no notes whatsoever during their time in our property. NO NOTES at all, then wrote a report to deny our claim.
The “source” of the problem is within an area of 17.5 square feet. This is the area that our water supply lines run. The ground beneath our cabin is bone dry, the crawl space is vented, the ceilings and walls of our cabin have no leakage, discoloration or swelling. The wet spot is very localized in the area where our supply lines run. If we do not drain off our water lines completely in between usage more water appears in the very localized spot.
The water is coming from a very specific spot, as shown in a photograph I have shared with the independent adjuster, has been witnessed by the independent adjuster, has been in a picture evidently forwarded to the overseeing Wawanesa adjuster, and has been witnessed by Bxxxxx of Titan Construction while in the company of the independent adjuster from Townsend & Leedham. THEY PUT THEIR HANDS IN THE PUDDLE.
Amazingly this picture DID NOT APPEAR IN ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM IN THE REPORT THAT CAUSED OUR CLAIM TO BE DENIED.
Upon reading the report one can see the agenda has been to deny the claim right from the start. Let’s review the report, I shall copy and paste it below:
Hi Mxxxxx,

Regarding the Hunter cottage located at #8 Horn beach.

My lead carpenter, Rxxxxx, met with Mxxxx from Compass Plumbing yesterday to inspect and try to determine the cause of the water and rotting floor joists.

(1.) The plumber drained and removed the HWT to give access to my carpenter to open the adjacent wall containing the water supply lines. As you can see from the pictures the lines are good. And the wall cavity has no signs of water damage.

Rxxxxx had a look underneath at the floor Joists. His comments were that he was surprised at how rotten the wood was, and although the joists weren’t pressure treated it would still take years to get to that point. He also observed that in the bathroom just in front of the vanity, between the joist and the sheeting, there were some shims. Mr. Hunter confirmed that (2.) approximately two years ago he put in the shims to shore up the floor as it was staring to get soft in that area.

Based on our inspection last Saturday and Rxxxx’s inspection and comments Wednesday, My theory is that this is a condensation issue. There could be three issues at play here.

(3.) 1) There is no subfloor under the tub. It’s just kind of hanging there. Condensation could run off the underside of the tub and water could be affecting the floor under the laminate.
2) This could be a condensation issue with the floor in general. Robert said that he removed some more laminate and the laminate was completely dry but (4.) the foam layer between the laminate and the OSB was quite wet on the underside between the foam underlayment and the OSB. Sorry if this sounds confusing. To be clear, the foam underlayment was dry on top but wet underneath against the OSB.
5. 3) There are no gutters on the cottage. When it rains, much of the water would run under the cottage. And then evaporate up into the subfloor and Joists.

One thing is clear Mxxxxx, there is nothing sudden or accidental about this claim In my opinion. Whatever is causing this issue has been happening for years. Furthermore it looks as though Mr. hunter knew about a problem some time ago when he put the shims under the floor to shore up a soft spot.

The Hunter family seem like very nice people so it’s difficult to write a unfavorable report. I’m not sure how this will affect their claim, positively or negatively But I also know you value my honest opinion.

Pictures attached for your review.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Regards,

Bxxxxx Vxx Uxxx

Let’s examine the problems with this report:
1. The plumber drained the tank, but then the carpenter cut two holes in front of where the tank sat and called it good. The tank did not even need to be removed for this. When we asked them to cut further back and explore further along the line they REFUSED. The line from where they cut runs east approximately 3 feet, north at least another 5 feet and then runs further to the pump house. They refused to look at all. Period. It was at this point that we completely knew we were being set up. They refused to look even though a very specific area is all that is wet.
2. It was the weekend of SEPTEMBER 7, 2014 when we went to shim up the floor, not TWO YEARS ago. I have a blog post to prove it: https://htheblog.wordpress.com/2014/09/07/not-all-things-are-as-they-seem/

FRAUDULENT STATEMENT THAT IS COMPLETELY UNFAIR. Complete fabrication and a complete lie, and this is the report that is causing our claim to be denied.
Why did they say “approximately 2 years” , perhaps because you only have two years to make an insurance claim. The report was trying to question the credibility of the claim.
3. First of all the wet spot is only at the one end of the tub away from the taps. Once the floor was opened up and started to dry out the wet spot was strongly apparent. This picture was not even included in the report even though at the time I even had the area masked off with bright green masking tape and I pointed out the spot to them at least a hundred times that afternoon and they continued to ignore me. Condensation requires heat meeting cold. The building is unheated. The crawl space is vented. The tub has not been used for 4 years as we did not have a working hot water tank installed. The ground is dry, dusty dry; condensation would drip. Condensation would not happen at one end of a tub, the end of the tub where the tub is no longer touching the floor. Condensation would not still be occurring because the whole are is completely opened up. It CANNOT scientifically be condensation.
If it was condensation, why did Bxxxxx, writer of this report , send out a crew when he himself had seen the situation just days before. Milking the system or “not condensation”, you decide.
4. There is NO foam layer. NONE.
Here is the order: 1-laminate, 2-vapour barrier, 3- sheeting (possibly OSB), 4-joists
This is evident in the pictures provided to the insurance company on the report. It is poly, you can see through it. It is clear as day in the pictures supplied with the report.
More fabrication of the situation, they are even lying about the construction.
5. If the gutter theory held, first the ground under the cabin would be wet, not dusty and dry. Second there would be staining, and swelling on the ceiling and walls, but there is none. Third the bottom of the joists are bone dry, so it isn’t ground water. Fourth the wet area is localized.

Beyond all of this the report COMPLETELY OMITTED pictures of the actual wet spot. Complete omission. Complete misrepresentation of the situation. This was completely avoided.
REFUSING TO SHOW THE TRUTH. WE HAVE HAD OUR CLAIM DENIED ON LIES.
The independent adjuster forwarded all of our emails to the overseeing Wawanesa adjuster of our claim. Our insurance broker confirmed this as we sat in his office listening to the phone call he had with the adjuster this afternoon, November 14, 2014. If she had been bothered to cross reference any of the information she would have realized the report was filled with lies right down to when we discovered the problem. There is a vast difference between September 7, 2014 and “approximately 2 years ago”.
The independent adjuster also assured our broker that it was “100%” not a supply issue, “100%”, yet they refused to look any further than the stud located directly in front of the hot water tank. Another lie, how can anyone claim to be sure 100% when they refuse to open up the walls and ceiling.
Fact is the report is filled with lies. Titan, the construction company provided by the adjuster, refused to look any further.
Come and look at the cabin and see for yourself. Localized completely concealed water and a construction firm hired by the insurance industry that completely refused to find the source.
We brought ALL of these items to our independent adjuster’s attention over a week ago, Mxxxx Bxxxx of Townsend & Leedham, who has actually witnessed personally the fact that we HAVE NO FOAM LAYER, and that we discovered the problem in September 2014, yet he used the report to deny our claim.
Here is the thing, the insurance industry keeps saying you MUST FIND THE SOURCE. The insurance industry sends out a construction and restoration firm that REFUSES TO LOOK FOR THE SOURCE and the LIES in their report. Fact of the matter is, the way this has gone, even if we personally open up the walls ourselves, walls filled with electrical and water, the INSURANCE INDUSTRY WILL SAY WE DAMAGED THE LINE DURING OUR DISCOVERY.
This feels like reverse insurance fraud, something the public needs to know about.
Debra & Mark Hunter

 

Just for good measure I will also include scans of the email of the report that I received. Please click on the email to view full size. I am all about transparency:

Why I am blanking out names I have no idea. It doesn’t seem very fair to protect those who write lies in a report about you personally (My husband worked on the floor September 2014 as indicated in the blog post , not approximately 2 years ago!) or lies about the property’s construction (we have no foam underlay).

Let’s carry on with the topic of “foam ” underlay. Lets play a game. I am going to show you six pictures, pictures that accompanied the report to Wawanesa. Pictures taken by Titan Construction. Pictures used to create a case against the claim. Here, take a peak:

Did you catch it?

Hint: no foam underlay, the vapor barrier is poly. The pictures contradict the report. The report Wawanesa is using to deny our claim.

Ps. did I mention those doing the report took NO NOTES the whole time they were in the property and that they were looking for excuses BEFORE they even entered the cabin….looking for things like ground water….they were trying to discredit the claim before walking in the door (more about that later!).

Let’s carry on with the “picture game” as it is pretty fun.

Did anyone notice the picture that is missing? The picture missing from the report? The picture sent over and over to the independent adjuster who in turn forwarded the emails to the over seeing adjuster? The picture that tells the story…………..

wait for it………..

wait for it……………….

blog moisture spotTaaaaaa Daaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

May I present to you “localized water”………….kind of blows a hole in the whole “condensation theory”, doesn’t it?

And for good measure one more…………..

blog masked off wet spot…..how it was when the construction professionals came to do their “exploration of a source”. The green tape I had put down as I had been taking phone pictures and I wasn’t sure what the resolution would be (resolution was pretty good!)

But amazingly a soaking wet isolated area, green tape and me pointing out the area at least one hundred times over the course of the afternoon was not enough for the picture to be included in the report, the report that caused our claim to be denied.

Soaking wet fresh water was insignificant in a water claim.

Let us carry on on the topic of “exploration” or finding the “SOURCE” as the insurance industry likes to use that term.

Let me show you the extent of the exploration…………………..

blog cut holesYep, that’s it. They REFUSED to look further. REFUSED. The construction/restoration company provided BY THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY “REFUSED” to look further.

Now let me give you a giggle. See the bottom hole? It looks a lot like this picture below doesn’t it?

blog titan construction image Wall cavityProbably because it is the same hole. The bottom picture is one of the pictures supplied with the report. Now for the “funny” part, I stuck my hand inside that hole, through the insulation and it was SOAKING WET. SOAKING. By the way the independent adjuster knew all this…..I’ll share that letter in a moment…..but the floor and insulation were soaking wet but they REFUSED to look further.

Now if that wasn’t enough our insurance broker chatted on our behalf to the independent adjuster. Sometimes it is good to get someone else’s take on a situation. The independent adjuster from Townsend & Leedham assured our broker that it was “100% not a supply line issue”………”100%”.

Let’s look at a diagram….I like diagrams.

blog bathroom graphicAnyone spot anything curious? The orange area is the area of “exploration”. I invite anyone who wants to to come out to the cabin and witness that NOTHING else has been opened up. Nothing. Based on two tiny cuts, cut in-line our adjuster is “100%” certain it isn’t a supply line issue.

100%.

blog cut holes

You see a ruptured supply line would mean a valid claim. They don’t want a “valid” claim. They want out of it and don’t want to risk finding “the source”.

They refused to look. They lied in their report.

Anyone seeing a pattern?

This is all fact.

This is why EVERYONE needs to review the reports submitted to their insurance company. You need to verify that everything is true.

Protect yourself and get the paperwork. If it happening to us there is a chance that this procedure is epidemic.

I invite anyone or any organization to ask for the paperwork on our claim, you will see everything that is published here is identical to what Wawanesa will have. Check it out. Please.

And just to leave you with some real entertainment, I am going to publish below the letter I sent to our independent adjuster after witnessing the construction workers refusing to look for the source. Remember our independent insurance adjuster….the one that was 100% sure it wasn’t supply line related even though only two tiny cuts were made in the wall……………well have a read………….the whole situation resembled Monty Python’s Flying Circus so feel free to get some popcorn and have a laugh.

The letter from October 29, 2014 reads:

Hi MXXXX,
The almost three hour drive home allowed us a lot of time to think about the situation at the cabin. This is a written account of our thoughts.
Everyone is telling us a little bit of water can’t do that sort of damage, and the plumber is saying the pump should come on all the time, so I decided to run some numbers to approach the situation from a science and mathematical view rather than a personal one.
I thought about water drops I have seen in the past, it is usually a slow accumulation of water until the droplet forms and then gravity sends the drop down to the ground. I decided to take a conservative approach and assume one water droplet fell per minute which would be a very small pipe leak. I then had to come up with a tangible measurement for a water drop, so I took a 2.5 mL measuring spoon and counted the drops it took to fill the spoon. In three tries the results were 15 drops, 17 drops, and 20 drops. For the rest of the calculations I assumed 20 drops = 2.5 mL (the most conservative situation).
The following calculation shows how the water, at a rate of one droplet per minute, accumulates:
1 drop per minute = 60 drops per hour
60 drops per hour = 7.5 mL of water leaked per hour
1 day at 1 drop per minute = 180 mL of water leaked per day
1 week at 1 drop per minute = 1.26 L of water leaked per week
1 month (based on 4.33 weeks per month ) = 5.455 L of water leaked per month
5 months of cabin season water usage (May- Sept) with a calculation of 5.455L x 5 = 27. 279 Litres of water leaked in a cabin season.
As the floor started to “bounce’ beginning of this season we can assume the water damage started at least the previous year which leads us to the calculation of 2 years x 27.279 litres = 54.558 Litres of water dripping unseen on to the floor.
To give a visual, over the span of 10 months that is like pouring the equivalent amount of liquid on to the floor as 13.6395 large 4L containers of milk.
The plumber wouldn’t listen to the concept of hidden, trapped, accumulating water that is flowing down the inside of one of the walls and situating itself hidden under the tub. The plumber kept arguing the pump should be coming on all the time.
This brought me to my next calculation. I know the pump doesn’t kick in for the first few seconds when the water is running, it must be set up so that a certain amount of demand is needed before pumping. I also know that I can rinse my toothbrush in a length of time that does not require the pump to kick in; I’ve been doing it for years. When I got home I decided to measure how much water is used when I rinse my toothbrush. I tested it twice, both times it was bang on 250 mL of water (which both gives a tangible quantity and proves I am OCD!).
Then I decided I wanted to figure out the bare minimum of how much of the waterline had to be emptied of water to engage the pump into action. So I went to Home Depot and measured the internal measurement of the 1/2 inch water supply line used in the cabin. The internal measurement is 11 mm. From here I figured out if I have a minimum of 250 mL of water to trigger the pump and the pipe has a diameter of 11mm, that I would need an pipe length of 657.665 mm (or .66 meters) empty of water to trigger the pump.
At the cabin the plumber waited 5 to 10 minutes waiting for the pump to come on, of course it didn’t, and pretty much decided his job was done. The fact of the matter is it would take 33.33 hours for the pipe to empty to the pump trigger amount of 250 mL. This is why we would never see the pump spontaneously trigger due to a leak, water is used more than once every 33 hours.
I just wanted to share the math with you as we keep seeing fresh water coming from some concealed source and the construction professionals today just would not listen to us. The numbers show the quantities of water that could be accumulating without any detection at all. I think numbers give a nice objective perspective.
I just have a couple more thoughts from today’s experience and supposed exploration to find the source of the problem.
The water causing the problem has to be accumulating in small quantities as it is a case of absorption rather than flow. Flow would have allowed us to hear the water and see the seepage.
The water is absorbing, as under the laminate there is no light or heat to aid in evaporation. This is also evident as mold is minimal. There is not enough heat to grow mold. This also rules out condensation, as condensation needs the hot and cold temperature contrast to occur.
The ground water argument by the plumber also is not logical. First the ground in the crawl space is dry and powdery. Secondly if it had been wet the damp smell would have manifested itself long ago. Thirdly, the wood is wet from the top down not the bottom up when you look at the joists supporting the subfloor. Fourth, the subfloor is a minimum of 9.5 inches above grade. Converting that to metric, it is 0.24 meters. The difference between high and low tide on the west coast (Port Browning, Pender Island – I watch them daily) can be 0.1 meters. We would have to have waves lapping in for this theory to work.
Mark said no matter what, insurance will say “find the source”. This is what we hoped to accomplish today, it is in our best interest to solve the problem once and for all, solving it protects our investment. This has been the fourth trip to the cabin specifically for this insurance claim, two of which both Mark and I gave up work days for. Today, with the assistance of construction professionals supplied by the insurance industry, we hoped to get to the source of the problem.
The problem area, which is visually apparent due to its soaking wet nature , is a 2.5 ft by 7 ft area for a total of 17 .5 square feet.
We had a construction professional and a plumbing professional in attendance. When the pump did not come on spontaneously the plumber lost all interest. I would ask questions like “where do the supply lines lead?” to encourage further exploration and his response was “Straight up.” Both construction professionals were more interested in throwing out wild ideas than helping us locate the source of the issue. When neither will get their hands dirty, but I am crawling and digging around in hopes of finding the source of the issue there is a big problem. At one point in the afternoon, the gentleman from Titan cut off a piece of the 4×8 sheeting and plopped it on over the hole to “seal it up”. It doesn’t fit, a raccoon could fit through the gap at the north end of the tub, but seriously, what was the point in saying anything.
From here the afternoon really improved. The construction professionals started packing up their things to leave, they just decided. They didn’t say anything to us, they hadn’t looked for or found the problem, they just packed up. In a last ditch attempt to find the problem, the reason we had driven for almost three hours and given up work time, I tried to encourage that we continue to look further. No one looked at the back of the hot water tank closet, no one looked in the ceiling where the pipes go “straight up” according to the plumber, no one bothered to wiggle under the tub, no one could even reach into the wall that they had cut open and feel that it was soaking wet. It was an utter disappointment and waste of our time. The cherry on top was when I asked the gentleman from Titan if we could look further into the walls, and he said ” I don’t get paid enough to make decisions like that.”
How can we possibly find the source when the professionals recommended by the insurance industry refuse to look?
It was the equivalent of Mark standing at the curb to look for hail damage.
I will be honest MXXXX, I am still shaking my head from the events of the day. I feel frustrated from the time we wasted. I feel frustrated that no one even wanted to look for the problem. I feel insulted by the suggestions of condensation, especially when they said the condensation was in “high traffic areas” . I alluded to this in one of the previous emails however now that I can write properly I must tell you the rest. One of the “high traffic areas” would have been under the air hockey table, the other is near our toaster….no one eats that much toast (just saying!). We also have the “groundwater” suggestion which would involve waves of biblical proportions lapping across the prairies.
I fear these two construction professionals have now compromised our position. As I have indicated on many occasions, due to the seasonal water system we were forced to drain off the system and remove the pump. This was our very last chance to find the source of the issue . No one wanted to look. No one tried. We put our trust in them and we are now left with nothing.
I hope you received the multiple emails and all the pictures. I imagine as I continued to send them, you could sense the frustration we experienced today. We hoped to find the problem, but the construction professionals had no interest.
Thank you for reading this email.
Debra Hunter

(By the way there are a lot more emails running up to this point if anyone is interested. I like sharing!)

So here we sit. We have a cabin full of water. A cabin where we can now not correct the problem for 6 months because we are on a seasonal water system. A cabin where we can now not correct the problem because the insurance industry took their own sweet time over dealing with it even though we CONSTANTLY stressed it was time sensitive due to both weather and water supply. A cabin DETERIORATING by the day because the INSURANCE INDUSTRY REFUSED to look at where the problem REALLY is.

We’ve been told we can do our own “exploration”, but we know insurance will just say we damaged the pipe when we, the amateurs,  opened the wall. We also know that once we find the issue insurance will then argue that the break isn’t “big enough” or there isn’t enough “water flow” and they will deem it “seepage” not an event that is “sudden and accidental”. The report was very careful to use the popular insurance terminology of “sudden and accidental”…a report that couldn’t even use proper capitalization…..yet the report was planned enough to use the specific insurance term. The report was planned to deny the claim from the beginning.

The moral of the story is everyone MUST GET ACCESS TO THE REPORTS BEING PRESENTED TO INSURANCE. Don’t suffer libelous statements like the ones we are facing. Don’t suffer the corruption.

…..AND PASS ON THIS POST TO EVERYONE!