American Property Casualty Insurance Association
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Brooke Kelley-Hunt







May 12, 2014

Hurricane Season Begins June 1 - PCI Says Prepare Now


CHICAGO - With the start of hurricane season in only a few weeks, the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) urges residents in coastal states to consider purchasing flood insurance now to protect their homes and property.

“As people living in coastal states take steps to prepare for hurricane season it is important to keep in mind that flooding from tropical storms impacts not only shoreline communities but can produce significant damage hundreds of miles from the coast,” said Chris Hackett, director of personal lines for PCI. Flood insurance, a separate policy from your homeowners insurance, is needed to be protected. However, there is a 30-day waiting period between the date you purchase flood insurance and when coverage takes effect. So you don’t want to wait for a storm to appear on the radar before you seek to protect your property. Even though some forecasters are predicting a relatively quiet 2014 hurricane season, coastal residents need to remember that it only takes one storm to create extensive property damage.”

Flooding from storm surges during hurricanes and tropical storms can be especially dangerous for residents along the coast and further inland. According to the National Weather Service, rising water levels can cause extreme flooding, particularly when a storm surge coincides with normal high tide.

“Storm surges often pose the greatest threat to life and property, as storms such as Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Katrina highlighted,” said Hackett. “It’s critical that property owners understand that although most windstorm losses occurring from a hurricane are covered by homeowners insurance, flood issues are not covered under the standard home policy. Flood damage to your vehicle may be covered if you carry comprehensive coverage on your auto.”

In addition to preparing for hurricane season by creating emergency plans and strengthening your home, it’s important to talk with your insurance agent or company about your insurance policy and review additional coverage options, especially flood coverage.

Hackett points out that residents of coastal states who haven’t suffered flood damage in the past still should consider purchasing flood coverage. “Everyone needs to be financially protected from hurricane dangers. Flooding can cause many thousands of dollars in damage for those along the coastline, and storm surges can bring flooding inland to communities that don’t normally experience the highest winds from a hurricane,” he explained. “Just because you haven’t had flooding in the past doesn’t mean you won’t suffer damage in a future storm.”

Flood policies must be purchased separately through the National Flood Insurance Program.

“Now is the time to act,” said Hackett. “June 1 is approaching quickly and residents in coastal states need to investigate flood insurance options to ensure they are adequately protected for hurricane season.”

PCI has a wide range of resources available at  to help homeowners and businesses prepare for the upcoming 2014 hurricane season. Follow us on Twitter (@PCIAA) and use #becovered to keep the conversation going.

PCI is composed of more than 1,000 member companies, representing the broadest cross-section of insurers of any national trade association. PCI members write over $195 billion in annual premium, 39 percent of the nation’s property casualty insurance. Member companies write 46 percent of the U.S. automobile insurance market, 32 percent of the homeowners market, 37 percent of the commercial property and liability market, and 41 percent of the private workers compensation market.