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Fort mac evacuees stil need our help

A bit of a back story: during the May wild fire while everyone was still evacuated the city turned the gas and power back on in undamaged areas. Seeing as gas is lighter than air the homes that have a gas leak, fill up from the top down(when all the windows are closed). All it takes is a small spark such as the pilot light in a furnace and the house can explode.
This happened twice on May 17 within Fort McMurray.

Once in Thickwood and the other in Dickensfield. My friend who found out while evacuated that his house insurance had been canceled without his knowledge; figured he was in the clear when the fire left the city and headed north. Unfortunately he was 2 houses away from the explosion in Dickensfield. The house across the street took the brunt of the damage although his place looked like someone took a snowglobe and shook it. Fortunately he had some money saved up and has been fixing up his house with a bit of help from redcross. Those funds have since run out and he recently learned that Atco is not taking responsibility for the explosions. There are still repairs needed and he is looking into legal options when it comes to Atco.

7 months later we are still fighting with insurance companies and trying to get our homes back to a livable state. He has created a Gofundme, although the rules of Shoutout Edmonton specify they wont advertise such crowdfunding. So I wont post the link. Im wondering if anyone else has been through anything of a similar nature and what are his options?

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  1. Try contacting your MLA – Brian Jean, and MP – David Yurdiga, for assistance. With the amount of grief that the insurance companies are giving the residents I am sure the government is going to step in at some point.

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    • Chloe Ryan Chloe Ryan says:

      It would blow your mind how terrible some of the insurance adjusters were. How can the Insurance companies expect to send people who have never built a house or shingled a roof into a devastated community and think they’re going to get positive results? How are they supposed to know what damage is wear and tear from the sun on a roof and what is a direct cause of extreme heat from a fire?

      How is it that a neighbor 3 doors down got all new shingles; although having very similar policies and we were closer to the fire yet we could barley get approved for duct cleaning?!

      Im not looking for answers, just a little frustrated that it was out of anyones control and we’ve done nothing but argue for 7 months.

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  2. In order for someone to be held responsible to the homeowner, that person (or company) had to be negligent in their actions and be able to foresee the fire/explosion. The insurance company of the homeowner can cancel a policy for non payment of premiums. Unless your friend can find that someone was negligent or prove his premiums were up to date, he may be out of luck for compensation. Best of luck with the gofundme. Horrible situation. Hope this helps him to understand.

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    • Chloe Ryan Chloe Ryan says:

      Compensation from insurance isnt the issue, if the courts can prove that Atco was negligent by turning power back on in a deserted city; or that the original builder is responsible for the gas leak then either Atco’s insurance or the builders would cover the damages of the near by homes.

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    • Chloe Ryan right, but therein lies a huge mountain to climb, too. It would be the Plaintiff’s responsibility to offer the court that proof.

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    • Chloe Ryan Chloe Ryan says:

      Its unfortunate for the little man in this world. These companies know that they can get away with it because no one wants the hassle if being dragged through the court process for years.

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  3. that is just terrible. what the hell is insurance for anyway. unreal. they sure take your money in a hurry but hate like hell to pay it out.

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  4. I’m happy to help my family now. Insurance should help theirs.

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