What you need to know about storm insurance coverage - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

What you need to know about storm insurance coverage

Hurricane Isabel, September 15, 2003 (Source: NASA) Hurricane Isabel, September 15, 2003 (Source: NASA)
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) -

With hurricane season fast approaching, insurance experts say now is the time to check your policy.

The Insurance Information Institute is holding a conference in New Orleans this week to talk about the latest news in the industry.

With one named storm already hitting the Atlantic coast, experts say now is the time to read over your policy or get new insurance. You cannot get new coverage or change what you already have if a named storm is threatening and flood insurance takes 30 days to go into effect.

Lynne McChristian of the Insurance Information Institute says it's important have coverage for all types of weather events.

“You don't need a tropical storm to dump a lot of rain,” she said. “It's very important. Also, people think that just because you live on the coast, that they might need flood insurance. But if there's a storm surge, that is flood damage and that water has to go somewhere. Inland areas are at risk for flooding as well. It's very important to make sure that you're comfortable and that you've got insurance to protect you financially. That's what it is supposed to be for.”

According to the Insurance Information Institute, wind damage from both tropical storms and hurricanes is covered under standard homeowners, renters and business insurance policies. Flood damage resulting from storm surge caused by hurricanes is excluded under standard policies; however, flood coverage is available from the federal government's National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), and some private insurance companies.

Damage to cars from hurricanes is covered under the optional comprehensive portion of an auto insurance policy. This includes wind damage, flooding and even falling objects such as tree limbs. More than 75 percent of all Americans choose to purchase comprehensive auto coverage.

For more information and questions to ask your insurance provider, visit www.iii.org.

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