Property and Casualty Profile – May

Hurricanes: Are You Prepared?

In This Issue

  • Hurricane Preparation and safety tips: Ensure you, your family and your business are prepared during this coming hurricane season
  • Emergency Hurricane Preparation: Checklist for Business owners and operators

Did You Know?

Hurricanes are capable of producing winds in excess of 155 miles per hour and causing catastrophic damage to coastlines and several hundred miles inland. Additionally, hurricanes can also lead to storm surges along the coast and cause extensive damage from heavy rainfall. All Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coastal areas are subject to hurricanes. Parts of the Southwest United States and the Pacific Coast also experience heavy rains and floods each year from hurricanes spawned off Mexico. The Atlantic hurricane season lasts from June to November, with the peak season from mid-August to late October. The Eastern Pacific hurricane season begins May 15 and ends November 30.

How to Prepare for a Hurricane

During Hurricane Season

  • Plan evacuation routes and designate a “post-disaster contact person” that family members know to call once the storm is over.
  • Stock up on items such as bottled water, canned goods, manual can/bottle opener, flashlights, battery-operated radio, nails, tarps and plywood. See a full list here, courtesy of the National Hurricane Survival Initiative.
  • Keep an up-to-date log of all of your possessions with photographs and videos, and review your home insurance policy.
  • Trim your trees and shrubs to minimize damage.

When a Hurricane Threatens

  • Cover windows and doors and secure outdoor furniture.
  • Make sure you have three gallons of water per family member.
  • Refill your prescriptions, fill up your car with gas and withdraw a week’s worth of cash since power outages may interrupt these services temporarily.
  • Place important, valuable papers such as your log of possessions in waterproof bags.

During a Hurricane

  • You should have canned food for at least three days and a can opener
  • Listen to your battery-operated radio for instructions from the local authorities on evacuation and safety guidelines
  • Seek shelter in an interior room away from windows, such as a closet. If you hear the winds subside, do not assume that the storm is over. The calm may be the eye of the storm, in which the worst part is yet to come.
  • If the electricity goes out, use a flashlight to see; do not use candles.

After a Hurricane

  • Make sure you have pet food and supplies for three days.
  • When inspecting your home for damage, wear sturdy shoes and clothing as protection.
  • Contact a trained expert to turn off damaged utilities and appliances instead of trying to do it yourself.
  • Drink only bottled water until tap water is deemed safe.

The authorities in your area will send out an “all clear” notice indicating that it is safe for you to leave your home. Until that time, remain inside where you are safer.

Home Matters

The Importance of Being Prepared

From June through November, hurricanes are at their peak. During a hurricane, heavy rains and catastrophic winds barrel through coastal areas and can severely damage or destroy homes and businesses. The best way to minimize damage from a hurricane is to be prepared before one strikes.

Safety First

Exercise extreme caution when inspecting your home for damage. Do not try to inspect damaged utilities and appliances; contact a professional to do so. In addition to the various precautions that you should take in-house, you should also have adequate insurance coverage to protect against losses. Contact Montoya & Associates to discuss your needs and review the coverages that are right for you.

Check out this post-hurricane home inspection checklist

Insurance Considerations

Beyond your typical policies, consider Flood Insurance and Business Interruption coverage policies. Also, have your business appraised every five years and provide appraisal documentation to Montoya & Associates. In addition, conduct an inventory of your supplies and equipment, including photographs of these items and descriptions. Then leave this information in an off-site location.

Everyone at your facility should know what to do and how to prepare for a hurricane. Contact us for all your business contingency planning and property insurance needs.

Emergency Hurricane Preparation Checklist for Business Owners and Operators

Click here to Download the emergency hurricane preparation checklist for business owners and operators, courtesy of Montoya & Associates.


Download the Full Newsletter Here: Property & Casualty Profile – May 2017