In a first-of-its-kind mission for the company, Allstate Insurance Co. recently deployed unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to inspect hail-damaged homes in south Texas.
Using multiple drones to test image quality, damage-analysis tools and customer response to the technology, Allstate took to the sky to inspect more than 20 houses in the Sequin/New Braunfels area.
“Our customers have been very receptive and interested in this innovative use of technology and how it will help shape the way we identify damage in the future,” says Glenn Shapiro, Allstate’s chief claims officer. “We have been active in the drone space and researching use cases for a while now, but to test drones with our customers who have actual storm damage is a big step forward.”
In the event of a catastrophe, explains Allstate, physical access to a neighborhood might be restricted by local authorities or by debris. In this situation, a drone could potentially help claims professionals serve customers in spite of those restrictions. Ongoing weather could also affect physical inspections of property, whereas a drone might be able to work without any delay.
During the Texas test, Allstate partnered with EagleView Technology Corp. to analyze the flights and further research how the images collected can contribute to an overall aerial image strategy for the insurer.
Allstate also continues to participate in the Property Drone Consortium, a group dedicated to helping further the safe use of commercial drones.