Poquoson opens new public works building after 2011 Thanksgiving fire

Nearly a year after a Thanksgiving Day fire destroyed the City of Poquoson’s public works facility, city officials, employees and representatives from VML Insurance Programs gathered on Nov. 14 to dedicate a new public works building.

City of Poquoson Public Works

The fire began last Thanksgiving in the ceiling around the HVAC unit of the city’s public works trailer. While the fire was quickly extinguished, water damage rendered the building unusable.

Thanksgiving Day fire

Without a public works facility, the city was in need of a business continuity solution.

Through their property insurance provider, VML Insurance Programs (VMLIP), the city was contracted to receive services through Agility Recovery. Agility provides comprehensive recovery solutions including access to power, technology, office space, and Internet/phone connectivity to help organizations maintain continuity of operations in the case of manmade or natural disaster.

In conversations with Agility, the city determined that existing infrastructure such as phone and Internet connections, as well as sewer connections, could still be utilized. They were able to borrow computers and other technology from other departments. All that was left was office space. Within 24 hours of their request to Agility, a new mobile unit was delivered that would serve as the public works facility for nearly a year.

Agility delivers mobile unit

“We had looked at receiving a temporary trailer from other companies, said Robin Bellamy, accountant with the City of Poquoson. “However many of them required a week for delivery, with Agility we received the unit the next day.”

The cost of the mobile unit was covered by VMLIP under the city’s Extra Expense Coverage.

Instead of replacing the public works facility with another trailer, the city decided to build a more permanent structure. They did this using the more than $167,000 received from VMLIP to replace the damaged trailer and with additional funds provided through city council.

On hand for the dedication of the new building were (l-r) Mayor W. Eugene Hunt Jr., Vice Mayor Carey L. Freeman, Council Members Charles M. Southall III and Raymond E. Vernall, and Utilities Superintendent Robert M. Speechley.

On hand for the dedication of the new building were (l-r) Mayor W. Eugene Hunt Jr., Vice Mayor Carey L. Freeman, Council Members Charles M. Southall III and Raymond E. Vernall, and Utilities Superintendent Robert M. Speechley.

“Throughout the recovery and reconstruction process, VML Insurance programs has been a true partner,” said Poquoson Mayor Hunt.  “From their invaluable assistance to re-establish operations within a few short days, to assisting with the reconstruction of a new modern facility and even with the ribbon cutting, Greg Dickie and staff have been truly exceptional.”

VML Insurance Programs Member Services Director Greg Dickie and Senior Claims Representative Tracey Dunlap attended the dedication.

Senior Claims Representative Tracey Dunlap and Director of Member Services Greg Dickie attended the dedication.

Senior Claims Representative Tracey Dunlap and Director of Member Services Greg Dickie attended the dedication.

“This was the first time a member has used Agility Recovery since we began offering this service in 2011,” said Dickie. “All parties involved were impressed with their proficiency and experience in disaster recovery and in their ability to deliver the items quickly.”

For more information on VMLIP’s business continuity services through Agility Recovery, visit: www.vmlins.org.

VMLIP offers more than just coverage.  We are partners in risk management. How does your insurer stack up?  Having all lines of coverage with VMLIP ensures that your organization is receiving comprehensive coverage and a wide variety of value-added services tailored to Virginia’s local governmental entities.  Call for a quote today: (800) 963-6800.  For more information on VMLIP visit: www.vmlins.org or follow us on Facebook.

** VMLIP blog postings are offered for VMLIP members to utilize in strengthening their risk management efforts.  See copyright information for clarification on sharing this information.

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About VML Insurance Programs

Director of Communications, VML Insurance Programs
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