Pictures like this are a dime a dozen this week. This particular picture is from a neighboring town to mine in Southern New Jersey. All of a sudden this week, the skies have opened up everyday with buckets of rain. We are in a static weather front and the result? FLOODING even in towns that do not normally flood.
I am often asked, "If I don't live in a zone where my mortgage company requires me to have flood insurance, why would I want it?" This picture answers the question -- it truly is worth a thousand words. If your mortgage company does not require flood insurance, it does not mean that you won't have a flood. It means that you are in a preferred flood zone ("X") and can pay less for flood insurance, but if you experience rising water in your home, the damage associated with that peril is NOT COVERED BY HOMEOWNER'S INSURANCE -- only Flood Insurance will cover such damages.
What steps do you need to take for Flood Safety?
Buy Flood Insurance There is a 30-day waiting period for flood policies to be effective, so do NOT wait until the water is rising to think about this. Call us at (215) 462-8970 - we would be happy to quote you a policy. Then, take photographs of your home (inside and out) -- if you have a claim, this will assist the insurance adjuster in settling claims. Put the photos in your safety deposit box at the bank.
When a Flood Comes, Safety is the Most Important Consideration Since floodwaters can rise very rapidly, you should be prepared to evacuate before the water level reaches your property. Keep a battery-powered radio tuned to a local station, and follow all instructions for your area. Be prepared to evacuate at a moment's notice. If, and only if, time permits, turn off all utilities at the main power switch, and close the main gas valve if evacuation is likely.
Do not touch any electrical equipment unless it is in a dry area and you are standing on a piece of dry wood while wearing rubber gloves and rubber-soled boots or shoes. Certainly, don't log onto your computer!
When outside the house, remember, floods are deceptive. Avoid flooded roads, and don't attempt to walk through floodwaters OR DRIVE THROUGH THEM!
If you're caught in your home by rising water, move to the second floor and, if necessary, to the roof. Take warm clothing, a flashlight, and a portable radio with you. Then wait for help. Don't try to swim to safety. Rescue teams will be looking for you.
After the Flood: If your home, apartment or business has suffered flood damage, immediately call the agent or company handling your flood insurance policy. An adjuster will be assigned to inspect your property as soon as possible.
Before entering a building that has been flooded, check for structural damage. Make sure it is not in danger of collapsing. Turn off any outside gas lines at the meter or tank. If you smell gas, call your utility company immediately. When you enter the building, do not use an open flame as a source of light, since gas still may be trapped inside. Use a battery-powered flashlight. Watch for downed electrical wires. Make certain that the main power switch is turned off. Do not turn on any lights or appliances until an electrician has checked the system for short circuits. Cover broken windows and holes in the roof or walls to prevent further weather damage. Proceed with immediate clean-up measures to prevent mold and other health hazards. Be sure to throw out fresh foods and medicines that have come in contact with the flood waters.
Always start at the bottom and work up. Ceilings are done last. Also, special attention must be paid to cleaning out heating ducts and plumbing systems. Mildew can be removed from dry wood with a solution of one cup liquid chlorine bleach in one gallon of water. Clean metal at once, then wipe with a kerosene-soaked cloth. A light coat of oil will prevent iron from rusting. Scour all utensils and, if necessary, use fine steel wool on unpolished surfaces. Aluminum may be brightened by scrubbing with a solution of vinegar, cream of tartar and hot water.
Flooded basements should be drained and cleaned carefully. Structural damage will occur if water is pumped out too quickly. After the floodwaters around your property have subsided, begin draining the basement in stages, about one-third of the water volume each day.
Please contact us for a quote on homeowners’, auto, personal umbrella, flood or any other personal insurance coverage.