IBC warns Canadians to be prepared and protected against severe weather disasters

Halifax, N.S. (May 8, 2013) – The first full week in May is Emergency Preparedness Week, and Insurance Bureau of Canada is helping Canadians better prepare for severe weather should disaster strike. There is often much discussion about what you can do to prepare before disaster strikes. But IBC wants to remind Canadians it is equally important to know what to do during and after a weather related tragedy.

“Severe weather is on the rise across Canada. Events that used to happen every 40 years can now be expected to happen every six. Homes are damaged more frequently by heavy rainfall, hail damage, storm surges, tornadoes and hurricanes. This makes it even more critical to know how you can protect your family and your home in the event of an emergency,” says Amanda Dean, Director External and Government Relations, Atlantic, IBC.

Here are a few tips and some helpful information from IBC:

  • During an emergency you could be faced with many scenarios, especially when it comes to severe weather. It’s important to be aware of who to call and what to do in different situations.
  • Be prepared to evacuate if instructed by local officials.
  • Power outages can often occur during a disaster. If they last, you need to know how to respond.
  • We hope you never have to file a claim but if you do, here’s what you should know to help make the process a little easier.
  • Damage to buildings caused by wind or hail is typically covered under most home insurance policies.
  • Damage to vehicles from wind, hail or water is usually covered if you have purchased comprehensive or all perils coverage auto insurance. This kind of coverage isn’t mandatory, so check your policy or get on the phone with your insurance representative.
  • Damage from a sewer backup is covered – IF you have it in your policy and only up to the amount of coverage purchased. It is not always automatically included, so check with your insurance representative, especially if you live in a low-lying area.
  • Overland flooding is NOT covered by insurance policies in Canada. This kind of flooding can be caused by a spring thaw, a storm surge, or water overflowing from rivers, streams, etc., that flows onto dry land and enters the home.
  • In many circumstances, homeowner’s, condominium and tenant’s insurance policies cover additional living expenses for people who can’t return home due to insurable damage.

Caveat: Every homeowner’s situation is unique, so please check with your insurance provider to ensure your policy is up to date and serves your needs.

About Insurance Bureau of Canada

Insurance Bureau of Canada is the national industry association representing Canada’s private home, car and business insurers. Its member companies represent 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. The P&C insurance industry employs over 115,000 Canadians, pays more than $7 billion in taxes to the federal, provincial and municipal governments, and has a total premium base of $44 billion.

To view media releases and information, visit the media section of IBC’s website at www.ibc.ca and for IBC on Twitter follow @insurancebureau.

SOURCE: Insurance Bureau of Canada