According to a recent report from The Weather Channel’s hurricane expert Dr. Rick Knabb, the largest percentage of named storms that formed in the Atlantic basin since 1950 occurred in September. With that in mind, Savannah Insurance Advisors is reminding individuals and business owners to avoid incomplete hurricane preparation and take the time to properly prepare their family and property now as the current Hurricane season threatens the East Coast. Advance planning makes a significant difference in protecting lives and property when a hurricane strikes. Confirming your property insurance policies are up to date and taking other safety measures around the home or business before a hurricane is in the forecast will best position individuals and business owners to avoid or lessen damage and ensure the fastest recovery after a storm hits.
Home and business owners may fall into the trap of believing boarding up windows is enough to protect themselves and their property. This is only one of some widely held misconceptions about the best way to prepare for a storm. Others include:
• Myth: The roof is the most vulnerable part of the home. Fact: The garage door is most often times the most vulnerable area in high winds and securing it with code-approved braces could help save the property.
• Myth: You only need to protect windows facing the water. Fact: All windows should be secured to combat high winds and flying objects.
• Myth: Taping a big “X” on windows stops them from shattering. Fact: Taping an “X” on a window won’t save it from being impacted by flying objects.
• Myth: Leaning against windows or doors will keep them from blowing inward. Fact: It is best to stay away from windows in high winds.
• Myth: Opening the windows will alleviate pressure. Fact: Opening and closing windows during storms can lead to injury and damage to building contents.
To combat these myths and truly prepare, we recommend property owners take the following actions to help stay safe:
• Review your homeowners insurance policy so you understand your deductibles and the amount of coverage that is currently in place.
• Prepare a survival kit that includes a three-day supply of non-perishable food, drinking water and medicine, for everyone in your family including your pet, a battery-operated radio, flashlights and extra batteries.
• Make sure you have insurance policies with claim contact information, an inventory of your home’s contents, and cash.
• Finally, leave promptly when ordered to evacuate. Leaving too late or not leaving at all only endangers yourself and others.
For Business Owners:
• Create a Business Continuity Plan and establish an “emergency file.” Review existing plans and communicate emergency evacuation and business interruption instructions to employees.
• Develop a Hurricane Emergency Plan – Identify how you will prepare, respond and recover to the threat of a hurricane. Include long-term and short-term safety requirements as well as procedures during and after the hurricane.
• Back Up Your Business – Consider keeping a backup generator and plenty of batteries on hand. Back up critical data and computer records off-site so that operations can continue. Having backup accounting documents and a record of business contents can assist in quickly moving the claim process for business interruption coverage.
• Review Your Policies – Understand insurance policies and ensure the business is properly covered for potential hurricane losses like wind, flood and interruption issues.
To be sure your insurance is Hurricane ready just call Savannah Insurance Advisors, we will be happy to review your policy even if you are not a client.