Post Content

 

 

Hurricane Season has officially begun.  The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has predicted a 70 percent likelihood of 10 to 16 named storms, four to eight of which could become hurricanes.  However, because Mother Nature can be unpredictable, the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation and the Division of Insurance recommend preparing in advance to minimize the circumstances that can lead to claims from hurricanes.

Preparing your home:

  • Review your insurance plan. Look into what your wind deductibles are and whether you have flood insurance.
  • Make sure your trees are trimmed back from your house and away from power lines.
  • Ensure gutters and downspouts are secure and clear of debris.Hurricane
  • Inspect the underside of the roof for signs of leaks.
  • Clear your yard and move furniture, grills, and toys under shelter. These items may blow around in high winds.
  • Have your basic disaster supply kit, including a wrench or pliers to turn off utilities, stocked and in an easily accessible location.
  • Keep flashlights handy. They are safer than burning candles.
  • Pre-cut and pre-drill plywood for windows.

Protecting your vehicle:

  • Park your car in the garage, if possible. If you don’t have a garage, try to park your car away from trees and on high ground.
  • Have a mechanic check your vehicle to make sure all systems are running properly.
  • Make sure tires have adequate tread and the recommended air pressure.
  • Check your spare tire and make sure it, the jack, and lug wrench are all stored in the trunk. Keep jumper cables, a cell phone, flashlights, and rain gear handy.
  • Make sure your wiper blades are in good working order.
  • Maintain at least a half tank of gasoline.
  • Drive cautiously. Roads and bridges may be flooded.

Filing insurance claims:

  • Call your insurance company’s claims reporting number as soon as possible.
  • If you work with an independent insurance agent, notify him or her of your claim as well.
  • Protect and secure your damaged property to the extent you can to prevent further damage and salvage what you can.
  • Note and photograph all damage and losses. This will assist in settling claims.
  • If temporary housing is necessary, check your policy for Loss of Use coverage. Your policy may cover such expenses up to a stated amount.
  • Be sure everything is considered in the claim. Back-up your claim with written estimates.

Consumers with questions about their insurance coverage can call the Division’s Consumer Services Unit at (617) 521-7777. The Division’s website at www.mass.gov/doi also provides valuable information regarding all lines of insurance, including auto and homeowners.

If you have additional questions, contact the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation by calling our Consumer Hotline at (617) 973-8787, or toll-free in MA at (888) 283-3757, Monday through Friday, from 9 am-4:30 pm. Follow the Office on Facebook and Twitter, @Mass_Consumer. The Baker-Polito Administration’s Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation is committed to protecting consumers through consumer advocacy and education.

Written By:

Recent Posts

What to Do If You Buy a Car That is a Lemon posted on May 21

What to Do If You Buy a Car That is a Lemon

Roadways are seeing a lot less traffic these days as businesses remain shuttered and much of the state is adhering to the stay-at-home policy initiated by Governor Baker’s state of emergency. Just the same, people have continued to shop for and purchase cars during the   …Continue Reading What to Do If You Buy a Car That is a Lemon

Show Me the Money posted on May 7

Show Me the Money

On March 25th President Donald Trump signed a $2.2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package which included an emergency universal income payment of $1,200 for most Americans who earn under $75,000 a year. The IRS will make prorated payments to those making up to $99,000 a year.   …Continue Reading Show Me the Money

Suiting Up to Protect Essential Workers and the Public posted on May 1

Suiting Up to Protect Essential Workers and the Public

Dressing for work has taken on a whole new meaning in the time of a global pandemic. Where it once would have been considered inappropriate to show up in public with your face covered, the opposite is now true especially for the Massachusetts’ essential workers   …Continue Reading Suiting Up to Protect Essential Workers and the Public