Merriam Insurance Partners in Cutting-Edge Remote Sensor Program

Merriam Insurance is partnering with several of its rescue mission/homeless shelter clients nationally to pilot cutting-edge remote sensor technology. These sensors are designed to send a signal through cell phone towers every 10–15 minutes, reporting the temperature and moisture levels in a monitored building. After being installed, the sensors are able to teach themselves the normal rhythms of the building’s temperature and moisture levels. If a potential water leak is detected, a notification is sent to the maintenance staff responsible for the building to investigate and take corrective action, hopefully preventing a loss.

Building and insurance losses due to preventable water damage, especially from pipes that freeze, burst or leak, cause millions of dollars of damage annually. A rescue mission recently had almost $1.5 million dollars in damage to their building after their power and heat went out over a weekend. This caused the sprinkler pipes to freeze and burst, sending water cascading throughout their building. The Merriam team believes technology like these remote sensors will help prevent, or greatly reduce similar causes of water damage. This should result in our non-profit clients having fewer reportable incidents, thus lower insurance premiums.

Each of the non-profit organizations piloting this program have agreed to install a separate wireless router to connect with 6 remote sensors placed throughout one of their buildings. The sensors connect to the cell tower through the router and have a battery life of 2–6 years. The router and sensors are provided to the participating organizations by one of Merriam’s insurance markets, Great American Insurance Company.

The Merriam Insurance team is excited to have the opportunity to partner with our clients to explore new and innovative solutions to help protect their property, increase the value they receive from their insurance premiums, and keep our communities running smoothly.

About Great American Insurance Group

Great American Insurance Group’s roots go back to 1872 with the founding of its flagship company, Great American Insurance Company. Based in Cincinnati, Ohio, the operations of Great American Insurance Group are engaged primarily in property and casualty insurance, focusing on specialty commercial products for businesses, and in the sale of traditional fixed, fixed-indexed and variable-indexed annuities in the retail, financial institutions, registered investment advisor and education markets. Great American Insurance Company has received an “A” (Excellent) or higher rating from the A.M. Best Company for more than 100 years (most recent rating evaluation of “A+” (Superior) affirmed August 17, 2018). The members of Great American Insurance Group are subsidiaries of American Financial Group, Inc. (AFG), also based in Cincinnati, Ohio. AFG’s common stock is listed and traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol AFG.

James Dick, CPCU, AAI