IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING HURRICANE Safety
hurricane season resources & information
Webinar: Hurricane Preparedness for your Home & Family
Watch our webinar replay as BKS’ Laura Sherman and Garrett Jones share valuable information on how you can start preparing your home and family in the event of a storm. Topics include:
- How to identify and protect yourself from risk
- Tips on how to fortify your home and family
- Steps to take when a storm is coming and post-storm
- COVID-19 considerations
Webinar: Hurricane Preparedness for your Business
Watch our webinar replay as BKS-Partners’ Risk Mitigation experts, Pat Kerby and Tim Liberty, as they share important information on how you can start preparing your business in the event of a storm. Topics include:
- Business considerations and continuity plans
- How to prepare your employees and property
- What you need to do if you have to file a claim
Resources for Your Home & Business
- Take pictures of your property and building. It will make the claims process smoother in the event your business sustains damage.
- Clean out roof drains, floor drains and catch basins and check drainage pumps.
- If blueprints of building are available, ensure their safety.
- Anchor and fill above-ground tanks with water or product to keep them in place during the storm.
- Fill the fuel tanks on your emergency generator and fire pumps. Ensure automobiles have full fuel tanks.
- Secure important tax, financial and inventory documents that may be needed to substantiate losses or are critical to you or your business.
- Sandbag building doors. Most Florida Counties have locations that provide free sandbags and sand as a service. Please be aware that most of these sites are self-serve meaning you have to fill the bags! Please refer to your county websites for specific site information.
- Prepare backup generators and ensure they are on with the air running regardless of damage to the building as this will minimize mold occurrence in the building.
- Move all electric/computer equipment away from windows and cover with a tarp.
- Secure/remove all loose items located on roof tops (i.e. satellite dishes, AC units, etc.).
- Have supplies for employees who you will need to work after the storm (i.e… Water, food, uniforms…).
- Obtain your insurance company’s claim reporting information and your policy numbers. If you do not know, please contact your Account Manager at BKS-Partners or call our general line at 813-984-3200.
- Tie down – or move inside – any items outside your building that could blow away in a powerful windstorm.
- Obtain and keep accessible as much cash as possible as banks may not be open following the storm.
- Secure all doors and board up windows to protect against flying debris.
- Shut off lines carrying gas or flammable liquids in case a pipe breaks in the storm.
- Shut down production processes safely and turn off the electricity at the main power source.
- Evacuate employees.
The casualties that occur from hurricanes and storms are generally not wind related and instead are due to flooding. Below are some tips on how to stay safe while inspecting your property after flooding has occurred and there is standing water.
- Ensure the gas, water and electricity are turned off.
- Turn off the main and all individual fuse connections in the fuse box in case power is reactivated.
- Inspect for any visible structural damage, such as warping, loosened or cracked foundation elements, cracks and holes before entering the building.
- Wear proper protective personal equipment. For example, rubber boots, gloves, and eye protection.
- Document the damage with video and pictures.
- Secure the property to prevent further damage.
Important Information by State:
- FEMA Ready. Prepare. Plan. Stay Informed: https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes
- Tracking hurricanes and storms: https://www.wunderground.com/hurricane or http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/
- What do to after a hurricane: http://www.redcross.org/get-help/prepare-for-emergencies/types-of-emergencies/hurricane#Recover or https://www.pureinsurance.com/hurricanes/hurricane-post-storm-tips
- Marine tips: https://www2.chubb.com/us-en/business-insurance/hurricanes.aspx and https://abiz.aceprivateriskservices.com/secure/book/news/files/ACE%20Rec%20Marine%20Hurricane%20Preparedness%20Tips_062910.pdf
- Hurricane and windstorm deductibles: https://www.iii.org/article/background-on-hurricane-and-windstorm-deductibles
- Reputable Vendors: Check with your insurer on their preferred vendors to repair the damage.
Chubb’s National Water Remediation Vendors are DKI: 1-888-502-4795 and Paul Davis: 813-984-2700
Other Water Remediation Vendor: BluSky: 888-882-5875
Florida Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
Florida Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
Florida Hurricane Deductibles
By Florida statute, the application of hurricane deductibles is triggered by windstorm losses resulting only from a hurricane declared by National Weather Service. Hurricane deductibles apply for damage that occurs from the time a hurricane watch or warning is issued for any part of Florida, up to 72 hours after such a watch or warning ends and anytime hurricane conditions exist throughout the state.
Hurricane deductibles and their triggers are set by law and are the same for the private, or regular market, as well as Florida’s Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (CPIC), the state-run program which provides property insurance to consumers. The hurricane deductible applies only once during a hurricane season. All insurers must offer a hurricane deductible of $500, 2 percent, 5 percent and 10 percent of the policy dwelling or structure limits. The percentages are based on the total value of the home. By Florida law, property insurance rate filings must include mitigation discounts or credits. These are applied to property insurance premiums. These discounts are available for personal and commercial residential property only. See Florida Office of Insurance Regulation for details.
The CPIC (Citizens), Florida’s state-run insurer of last resort will insure new homeowners in high-risk areas and others who cannot find coverage in the open private market. Under Florida law, Citizens may write a new insurance policy only if no comparable private market coverage is available or comparable private market policy premiums are more than 15 percent higher than a comparable Citizens policy. See website for details.
The Florida Market Assistance Program is a free referral service designed to match consumers who cannot find property insurance with Florida-licensed agents and insurers who are writing new business. See website for details.
Alabama Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
Alabama Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
Alabama Hurricane Deductibles
State law mandates that insurers offer discounts to policyholders who strengthen their homes against wind damage. See Department of Insurance website for details.
The Alabama Insurance Underwriting Association (Beach Plan) provides two types of policies: fire and extended coverage (not as comprehensive as standard homeowners policies and provides no liability coverage); and a wind and hail only policy for homes, condominiums, mobile homes and commercial businesses located in the Beach, Seacoast and Gulf Front territories of Baldwin and Mobile Counties. The plan offers discounts on policies covering residential dwellings built to, or retrofitted to fortified wind resistive standards, as certified by the IBHS. See website for details.
Georgia Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
Georgia Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
Georgia Hurricane Deductibles
The Georgia Insurance Underwriting Association (FAIR Plan) insures those who have not been able to find coverage elsewhere for windstorm and hail damage only for homes and businesses on the offshore islands and in certain counties, and wind and hail and other perils in the remainder of the state. See website for details.
Delaware Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps :
Delaware Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
Delaware Hurricane Deductibles
Insurers are required to provide clear and prominent notice concerning all hurricane and wind/hail deductibles and must include information on the trigger, how the deductible is applied and if it is stated as a percentage or dollar amount. In the case of percentage deductibles, the policy must provide an example of how it works.
Insurance Placement Facility of Delaware: The facility insures homeowners who have not been able to find coverage elsewhere for windstorm and hail damage. The FAIR Plan uses a $2,000 hurricane deductible that is mandatory in certain zip codes along the coast and optional in other zip codes. The deductible is triggered when the National Hurricane Center of the National Weather Service declares a hurricane watch or warning for any part of the state and ends 72 hours after the National Weather Service terminates the last hurricane watch or warning for any part of the state. See website for details.
Louisiana Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
- http://www.emergency.louisiana.gov/Disaster_Evaluation_Guide.html and
Louisiana Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
Louisiana Hurricane Deductibles
There are three deductibles for homeowners policies related to wind damage: hurricane, named storm and windstorm and hail. Named storm deductibles are activated when the National Hurricane Center reports that a storm reached tropical storm strength when winds reach 39 miles per hour (mph). Hurricane deductibles are activated when the National Hurricane Center reports that a tropical storm reached hurricane strength, at 74 mph. Windstorm and hail deductibles are used when homes sustain damage from winds from any source: hurricanes and tropical storms, tornadoes, or other storms.
Insurers generally cannot increase the named storm or hurricane deductible on homeowners insurance policies that have been in effect for more than three years. Insurers cannot impose more than one named storm or hurricane deductible per hurricane season.
State regulations mandate that homeowners may be eligible for premium discounts if they build or retrofit their home to comply with the state’s construction code or install mitigation or retrofitting improvements that are known to reduce loss from a windstorm or hurricane.
Most homeowners coverage in coastal areas is underwritten by the Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corporation.
The Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corporation provides insurance for residential and commercial property for those who cannot obtain it in the voluntary market. The Louisiana Citizens FAIR Plan and the Louisiana Citizens Coastal Plan operate as programs of the Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corporation. Both offer wind and hail only policies. See website for details.
Maryland Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
Maryland Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
Maryland Hurricane Deductibles
Maryland law allows a hurricane deductible to be applied to the entire state if there is a hurricane warning in any part of the state. Hurricane or other windstorm deductibles can exceed 5 percent of the coverage limit without the approval of the Maryland Insurance Administration. The insurer must file any underwriting standard that contains a deductible over 5 percent. Insurers are required by law to offer a premium discount to homeowners who submit proof to their insurer that they have made qualified mitigation repairs or improvements that materially mitigate loss from wind and have had these improvements inspected by a licensed contractor. The improvements are subject to inspection and verification by the insurer. See website for details.
The Maryland Joint Insurance Association insures homeowners and businesses who have not been able to find coverage elsewhere. Seasonal property and mobile homes are not eligible. Windstorm or hail deductibles apply to property within 200 feet of water. See website for details.
Mississippi Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
Mississippi Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
Mississippi Hurricane Deductibles
In Mississippi, percentage storm deductibles can be named storm deductibles or hurricane deductibles. In both cases, the deductible applies beginning when a named storm or hurricane watch or warning is issued anywhere in the state by the National Hurricane Center of the National Weather Service and ending 24 hours after the last named storm or hurricane watch or warning is issued for any part of the state. Insurers that use named storm or hurricane deductibles must clearly state on the homeowners policy the timing for the deductible and offer a practical example of how the deductible works.
Mississippi Windstorm Underwriting Association (MWUA, Wind Pool): MWUA provides windstorm and hail coverage only in the coastal counties of George, Hancock, Harrison, Jackson, Pearl River and Stone. See website for details.
Mississippi Residential Property Insurance Underwriting Association (MRPIUA): Insures owners of one- and two-family dwellings in the state who have not been able to find coverage elsewhere for windstorm, hail and fire and extended coverage. See website for details.
New Jersey Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
New Jersey Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
New Jersey Hurricane Deductibles
In New Jersey, hurricane deductibles approved by the Department of Banking and Insurance apply to losses from a storm designated a hurricane by the National Weather Service (NWS) but only if sustained winds speeds of 74 mph have been measured somewhere in the state. According to the Department of Banking and Insurance, the duration of a hurricane includes the time period beginning 12 hours prior to the first time sustained hurricane force winds of 74 miles per hour or greater are measured in New Jersey by the NWS (regardless of whether the sustained hurricane force winds reach the risk insured under the policy) continuing for the time period during which hurricane conditions exist anywhere in New Jersey and ending 12 hours after the last time hurricane force winds of 74 miles per hour or greater are measured in the state by the NWS. See website for details.
The New Jersey Insurance Underwriting Association (FAIR Plan): Insures one- to four-family homes where the owner has not been able to find coverage elsewhere. Coverage is limited, but perils include wind. In certain coastal areas, a special hurricane deductible may apply.Hurricane deductibles apply to losses from a storm designated a hurricane by the National Weather Service, with sustained winds speeds of 74 mph anywhere in the state, beginning 12 hours before the 74 mph winds begin and ending 12 hours after the last measurement of 74 mph winds is made. Homes that have certain wind-resistant features are eligible for a hurricane deductible reduction if they are properly documented. See state FAIR Plan website for details.
North Carolina Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
North Carolina Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
North Carolina Hurricane Deductibles
The North Carolina Joint Underwriting Association (FAIR Plan) insures residential and commercial properties statewide where the homeowner has not been able to find property coverage elsewhere. The Coastal Property Insurance Pool (CPIP), offers commercial, homeowner and dwelling windstorm coverage and homeowner coverage in the 18 eligible coastal counties of North Carolina.
South Carolina Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
South Carolina Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
South Carolina Hurricane Deductibles
Insurers in South Carolina are required to notify residential property insurance policyholders if the policy contains a separate deductible for hurricane, wind or named storm damage. If it is included, the insurer must provide an example to show how the deductible functions for a policy valued at $100,000. The insurer must also include a clear explanation of the event that will trigger the deductible.
The South Carolina Wind and Hail Underwriting Association (Wind Pool) insures properties where the homeowner has not been able to find coverage elsewhere for windstorm and hail damage from any type of windstorm. The Wind Pool operates in certain coastal areas. See website for details.
Texas Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
Texas Disaster Preparedness – Emergency Sites by City and County
Texas Hurricane Deductibles
Under Texas law, the windstorm deductible applies to windstorm and hail damage from any type of wind storm, not only named storms or hurricanes.
The Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA) provides adequate wind and hail coverage when it is not available in the insurance marketplace for 14 counties.
The Texas Fair Access to Insurance Requirements Plan Association (FAIR Plan) provides residential property insurance to qualified homeowners who cannot obtain insurance from licensed insurance companies. The FAIR plan operates statewide but cannot provide wind and hail coverage in areas that are eligible for inclusion in the TWIA (the TWIA covers only 14 coastal counties and five communities in Harris County [Galveston Bay]). Helpinsure.com, administered by the Texas Department of Insurance, has several resources available to help coastal residents find wind and hail insurance coverage.
Virginia Hurricane Resources & Evacuation Routes/Maps
Virginia Disaster Preparedness – Family Disaster Plans, Supply Kits, Statewide Emergency Numbers etc.
Virginia Hurricane Deductibles
The Virginia Property Insurance Association (FAIR Plan) provides dwelling and commercial property coverage to individuals and businesses throughout the state that are unable to obtain coverage through the voluntary insurance market.
Learn More by Viewing our Video Resources
The 2021 Hurricane Season
AccuWeather’s expert team of forecasters say while the 2021 hurricane season may not be as active as the 2020 season, it could be above average.
Packing Your Survival Kit
This year, make sure you’re equipped for any possibility. Learn how to pack a personal storm survival “bug out bag” from Marine Veteran and BKS Sr. Claims Consultant, Tim Liberty.
Click here to access an Amazon wish list with the products featured in the video.