American Property Casualty Insurance Association
  • Staff Contact: Brooke Kelley     
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  • April 15, 2015
  • Hurricane Flood Risks Increase; But Too Few Consider Purchasing Flood Insurance
  • TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – With less than 50 days before the June 1 start of hurricane season the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) is encouraging consumers, policymakers and insurers to use this “calm before the storm” to become better prepared.

    Although some forecasters are predicting another relatively quiet hurricane season, coastal populations continue to increase and that means more development and property is at risk for damage from storm surge, flooding and other coastal hazards. Even during a mild season, one strong storm is all it takes to cause billions in damage so everyone should take steps to be prepared.

    A recent survey conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of PCI found that only 15 percent of Americans said they have talked with their insurance company about additional coverage such as flood insurance. While 58 percent of Americans say they are prepared for natural disasters or severe weather with adequate insurance, supplies and a response plan, when asked about specific actions they had taken, only 21 percent actually have a disaster response plan that includes things like an emergency supply kit with food, water, first aid. The survey was conducted online within the United States from March 20-24, 2015 among 2,021 adults ages 18 and older.

    “Many homeowners fail to recognize that flooding can occur anywhere, not just along the coast. Only a few inches of water can cause thousands of dollars in damage. Not being properly covered could result in those expenses coming out of your own pocket,” said Chris Hackett PCI's director of personal lines policy.

    Flood insurance can be purchased through your insurance agent or by contacting the National
    Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), is managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA. You can call NFIP 888-379-9531 or visit the website at .

    “It’s important to note that NFIP policies don’t take effect for 30 days, so the sooner you purchase additional coverage the sooner you will be prepared,” said Hackett. “Now is the time to start preparing for the worst, as a hurricane or severe weather event can form quickly, leaving little time for you to respond. One very useful, yet simple preparedness step residents can take is to conduct a home inventory which provides them with a record of all their possessions. But according to our poll only 17 percent of Americans have taken this important, and relatively easy, step. It’s as simple as taking your smartphone and filming what’s inside your home, yet it can be tremendously helpful in the claims filing process later.”

    PCI is working with NOAA and other Weather Ready Nation Ambassadors to strengthen national resilience against extreme weather and flooding. PCI will continue to conversation on twitter @PCIAA and use #becovered #FloodSafety where we will share important tips and stories.
    For more information visit PCI’s Flooding Headquarters.

    Survey Methodology:
    This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of PCI from March 20-24, 2015 among 2,021 adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Jeffrey Brewer, vice president, public affairs for PCI.

    About The Harris Poll:
    Over the last 5 decades, Harris Polls have become media staples. With comprehensive experience and precise technique in public opinion polling, along with a proven track record of uncovering consumers’ motivations and behaviors, The Harris Poll has gained strong brand recognition around the world. The Harris Poll offers a diverse portfolio of proprietary client solutions to transform relevant insights into actionable foresight for a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer packaged goods. Contact us for more information.
  • PCI promotes and protects the viability of a competitive private insurance market for the benefit of consumers and insurers. PCI is composed of nearly 1,000 member companies, representing the broadest cross section of insurers of any national trade association. PCI members write more than $195 billion in annual premium, 35 percent of the nation's property casualty insurance. Member companies write 42 percent of the U.S. automobile insurance market, 28 percent of the homeowners market, 33 percent of the commercial property and liability market and 35 percent of the private workers compensation market.
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