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Forecasters Predict Very Active Hurricane Season; Check Your Insurance!

The Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is forecasting an active or extremely active season this year...
May 29, 2013

The Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is forecasting an active or extremely active season this year.

For the six-month hurricane season, NOAA’s Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook says there is a 70 percent likelihood of 13 to 20 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 7 to 11 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 3 to 6 major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of 111 mph or higher). These ranges are well above the seasonal average of 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes.

Timothy Reinhold, a chief engineer and senior vice president at the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS), has examined the destruction caused by strong hurricanes around the U.S., including the damage caused by hurricanes Andrew in 1992 and Charley in 2004.

In his lectures, Reinhold uses a picture taken in Florida’s Miami-Dade County after Hurricane Andrew of a house that lost its roof while the walls and its content remained intact to illustrate what could happen if a house is properly anchored. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recommends some basic steps that residents of storm-prone areas take at the beginning of every hurricane season. The steps include having shutters or marine plywood, five-eighths of an inch thick ready to cover windows and doors and the trimming of trees and shrubs.

Of course, an important part of preparation is making sure you have the right insurance.

“The start of the hurricane season is an excellent time to call your Professional Insurance Agent to schedule an insurance checkup,” said PIA National Vice President/Treasurer Richie Clements. “As a Louisiana resident and a survivor of Hurricane Katrina, I know the value of properly insuring properties at risk. Take it from me; having good insurance is just as important as boarding up your house when it comes to disaster preparation.” Clements is PIA National’s representative to FEMA and the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). He will become chairman of Flood Insurance Producers National Committee (FIPNC) in October 2013.