We are overdue for a powerful earthquake to strike the United States. Experts predict that this will happen and it will cause billions of damage to homes, property and the environment. While we don’t have a timeline for when this will happen, nor are they certain that California & the Pacific Northwest are the only vulnerable areas, you can always make sure you and your family are fully prepared today.
If an earthquake hit, would I be covered?
Your homeowners insurance policy may not cover earthquake losses. Without earthquake insurance, you will have to pay out-of-pocket to repair any damage to your home, replace your personal property, and to live and eat elsewhere after an earthquake.
At First Rate Insurance, we have access to the best earthquake insurance programs in the marketplace.
Our insurance professionals are happy to assist you in determining the appropriate coverage and tailoring a policy to meet your specific needs and financial situation. Call us today to receive a complimentary review and quote for the best earthquake options for you.
Earthquake Country Alliance has great tips for earthquake preparedness
Step 1: Secure Your Stuff
Since earthquakes can shake almost anything, it’s important to be aware of where your heavy or large items are located in your home.
- Do you have something heavy that can fall on you in a room you visit often?
- Keep heavy or unstable items away from doors or escape routes.
- If you have something heavy sitting on a shelf, see if you can lower it to a low shelf or the floor.
- Secure specific items in your home like your water heater, furniture, TVs, mirrors or art, appliances and more! This can be done with straps, studs or closed hooks.
Step 2: Create a Disaster Plan
- Identify where your safe spots are in every single room in your home. Can you drop, cover and hold in every room?
- Purchase a fire extinguisher and flash lights for your home. Keep them in a spot you can easily access.
- Make sure everyone in your home knows how to shut off your utilities: gas, water, electricity.
- Keep important documents in a safe. Also keep a list of important phone numbers for anyone in your family to access.
Step 3: Put Together an Emergency Kit
- Keep this in an area you spend a lot of time at in your home. It’s even better if you have a kit for your car or work.
- Items to consider: A whistle, flash light, first aid kit, non-perishable food, water, portable radio, protective work gloves or goggles, blankets, a can opener for canned food or copies of important documents.
If an earthquake strikes, DROP, COVER and HOLD.
Drop- Drop to your hands and knees to prevent yourself from having a fall, but also to have the ability to crawl to safety.
Cover – Cover your head and neck. If possible, crawl under a table or desk. If there isn’t anything available, crawl to an interior wall (away from doorways and windows). Use your arms to protect your head, neck and organs.
Hold – Hold on until the shaking stops. If you are under a table, hold onto it with one hand. If you do not have shelter, hold onto your body with both arms.
Step 5: Reach Safety after the Shaking Stops
- Evacuate to a higher ground if a tsunami is possible.
- Check for immediate injuries or damage. If bleeding is occurring, apply pressure on the wound.
- Remember your evacuation plan – where is a safe place to go?
- Prevent further damage – fires, gas leaks, fallen items, electrical wiring or spills can all cause more damage after an earthquake occurs. Be sure to shut off electricity or gas and have your fire extinguisher ready to use.
Step 6: How to Recover
- Once you have dealt with immediate damage, other items will require your attention.
- If you have an earthquake insurance policy, take pictures of the damage to your home and property. Then contact your insurance company to begin the claims process. Be sure to keep a record of repair costs.
- Not all earthquake policies are the same. Our agents can help determine the best coverage for your needs and finances. Call us today to receive a free earthquake insurance quote.
For answers to everything insurance, trust the insurance agents at First Rate Insurance Plus in Kirkland, WA. Our local insurance agency can help you insure everything from your auto and home to your boat and motorcycle. Because we are an independent insurance agent, our agents can shop from over 20 insurance companies to find you the best rates and the coverage that makes sense for your situation. Check out our insurance website 24/7 or to request a quote.