Virtus Blog

Weathering the Storm: Tips to Safeguard Your Property this Winter

Millions across the U.S. will experience a bitter blast of arctic air, lasting over the weekend and into the start of the new workweek. It’s going to be brutal outside, with temperatures struggling to make it to zero.

And these record low temps can also cause record-breaking losses if not properly prepared.

But that’s where Virtus Risk Solutions comes in; keeping our clients safe and mitigating risks before an incident occurs is their specialty. Below are seven tips to better protect you, your employees and your property during this winter storm.


  1. Inspect roof, gutters, drains and downspouts and ensure there will be sufficient drainage for snowmelt. Seal cracks or holes in walls, attics, and ceilings. Confirm windows and doors are weather tight.
  2. Develop snow removal and de-icing plans, like designating certain employees to clear specific areas or hiring a third-party service.
  3. Check temperature controls, and always keep temperatures above 40 degrees. Make sure warm air can flow to exposed pipes and allow water faucets to drip to keep water flowing.
  4. Protect valuable items, electronics and important documents like computers, production equipment, emergency contact information and insurance policies by storing them in safe and secure location unlikely to be impacted by winter storm damage.
  5. Shut down nonessential electrical equipment.
  6. Consider preparing emergency kits with items like flashlights, portable chargers, snow removal and de-icing materials, and first-aid supplies.
  7. Have employees stay indoors as much as possible only move forward with essential transportation operations.


  • Structural concerns (e.g., burst or frozen pipes and water damage)
  • Dangerous driving conditions and transportation delays or cancellations
  • Equipment breakdowns and utility disruptions (e.g., heat and communication services)
  • Electrical fires and power outages
  • Employee illnesses and injuries (e.g., hypothermia, frostbite, cold stress, and slips and falls)


  1. Review policy and contact your carrier.
  2. Inspect damages and document your losses.
  3. Secure impacted areas and prevent additional damage by turning off water supply to burst pipes, securing unstable structures and covering exposed areas with tarps.