To experience how the insurance industry is responding to the tornado that took out a large swath of Joplin, Mo. on May 22—the EF5’s path through the city was nearly a mile wide and about 7 miles long— I “embedded” on June 7 with State Farm Insurance so I could witness the company’s concerted response to the devastating storm that left more than 150 dead and 1,000 injured.
During my visit, I met with a local State Farm agent, Karen Rutledge, to hear how her agency has been dealing with this enormous catastrophe—and the profound impact it has had on her clients.
Some of the State Farm buddies had claims backgrounds and were helping to write advance checks to customers. And the extra bodies helped make sure that every client who came through the door quickly was able to quickly have a person-to-person conversation.