Allstate Goes from Polaroid to Ultra-Zoom Drone Technology

Allstate Corp., one of the nation’s largest publicly held personal lines insurers, is taking drones over Savannah, Ga., and parts of South Carolina to inspect rooftops and homes damaged by Hurricane Matthew.

Allstate says it is using multiple unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) to help in the assessment of claims filed by customers. According to the company, the aircraft can capture up to 4K-resolution images, which means an adjuster can look at one photograph and zoom in for extreme detail on any individual shingle.

“When I started back in 1999 with the National Catastrophe Team, I used a Polaroid camera to take pictures of the damage,” says Charlie Urban, Allstate catastrophe adjuster. “Now, seeing us use drones is unbelievable. I’m really excited to see where the technology might go in the future.”

Allstate previously tested the use of drones in Texas after a hailstorm to help determine their potential use as a tool in the adjusting process.

“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,” adds Glenn Shapiro, chief claims officer at Allstate. “We have been active in the drone space, testing and researching use cases for a while now. To be able to use drones with our customers who have actual storm damage is a big step forward.”


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