The Catastrophe Response Team: Rushing to Respond

Farm Bureau Financial Services’ Catastrophe Response Team (CAT Team) is ready to respond as soon as the storm passes. Dan Behrens, Property Claims Director, explains, “Our team is ready to do whatever it takes to ensure our client/members receive prompt, expert claim service after a significant storm has occurred.”

Created in 2015 to respond to significant storm events requiring specialized knowledge to process claims quickly and accurately, the CAT Team includes 16 members located across our geography. Whether it’s a hailstorm in Kansas or a tornado touch-down in Iowa, this team is there to answer the call. They make it their goal to be the first insurance company representatives on the scene and among the first ones finished with resolving their claims. When a storm hits, activated team members work up to 21 days straight, inspecting property damage and writing repair estimates at their designated storm site. They then have 7 days off to rest up before their next assignment.

Behrens says, “When the CAT Team comes in, they’re there to serve both the client/members and the local agents. They help ensure that client/members receive timely, accurate and courteous service.”

A Day in the Life

No two days are alike. Josh Weninger, CAT Team Consultant from Wichita, Kansas, explains, “when I’m out on a job, I spend most of my day visiting Farm Bureau client/members who have suffered some type of property storm damage. I will scope the storm damage, write a repair estimate, then settle the claim with the client/member.” Weninger is a long-time CAT Team member and says, “Farm Bureau always takes care of their clients and is a great company to work for.” Since our team members do spend time away from home, Weninger explains that it takes a special type of individual to thrive on our CAT Team, “Someone who is self-motivated and has a passion for helping other people and does ok with being away from home would make a great member of the CAT Team.” 

Farm Bureau Cares

After a town has experienced a major loss, many of our client/members are overwhelmed and we’re committed to help them in any way we can. Aside from processing claims quickly and ensuring our client/members have what they need immediately, our Farm Bureau Cares trailer is there to serve a hot meal and answer any additional questions.  

 Farm Bureau Cares Trailer 

Paws on the Ground

Some of our storm team members have four legs and fur. Farm Bureau recently introduced their first crisis response canine, Baylee. In the aftermath of tornadoes or other severe weather disaster, Baylee, along with Weninger, her CAT Team handler are ready to get to work. While her handler works on assessing property and processing claims, Baylee focuses on offering emotional support. We’ve recently added two additional therapy dog teams: Chief, an 8-year-old Black Labrador Retriever rescue, and his handler, Tracy and Cubbie a 12-year-old YorkiPoo and his handler Theresa.

 Bailey Home Office 02

Helping Client/Members During a Time of Need

When disaster strikes, the CAT Team isn’t the only group that jumps in to help. Behrens explains, “Teamwork and a commitment to company values amongst our claims reps in all of our states is vitally important.” While the CAT Team is the first to respond physically, there are other storm claims representatives that help our client/members from other locations:

  • Storm Service Team: This team provides immediate response to incoming calls and emails related to storm losses. This team only handles claims related to weather-related events. They talk with client/members and explain the claims process to them. They’re some of the first team members our client/members talk with after they’ve experienced storm damage.
  • Express Claims Team: This team is trained to help answer all property-casualty claims questions. Whether a car accident or hail damage to a home, this team is ready to help our client/members immediately begin the claims process.
  • Property Storm Adjusters and Auto Storm Adjusters: these part-time representatives work storm claims for us on an as-needed basis, usually after a large storm has taken place.

Joining Our Storm Teams

If you’re personable, passionate, well-organized and motivated to help others, joining one of our storms team might be a good fit for you. Keep an eye out for openings or join our Talent Network today.