It is a common misconception that hurricanes do not cause damage to the Hawai'ian Islands. In fact while hurricanes do not commonly make landfall in Hawai'i, the increased rainfall, storm surges and ocean swells cause devastating damage. Over the past 8 years, FEMA has paid out Hawai'i Residents over $1M in flood insurance claims. The payout was not only from Federal declared disasters in 2020 (Hurricane Douglas) and 2018 (Hurricane Lane), but also from seasonal storm events.
Although the National Weather Service forecast for the 2022 Central Pacific hurricane season calls for a “below average” activity, it only takes one storm to devastate a community and your life that you’ve built for you and your family. It’s important to take the necessary precautions ahead of time.
What supplies do you need to be ready for a hurricane?
Do you have a Disaster Plan prepared?
The American Red Cross recommends that family and household members sit down together to make a disaster plan. Download a PDF fillable copy of a Family Disaster Plan template.
Do you have adequate insurance?
Hawai'i Department of Consumer Affairs, Insurance Division has a helpful four step process to prepare for storms on their website: https://cca.hawaii.gov/ins/hurricaneseason/. The Division also has many informative resources about different types of insurance. Check them out at: https://cca.hawaii.gov/ins/resources/. One publication that is a must read is, “MY INSURANCE DOESN’T COVER WHAT? Avoid surprises by understanding your homeowners insurance policy“. Download your copy and educate yourself before being caught by surprise when your loss is not covered.
If you didn’t already know, most homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover flood damage. Additionally, there is typically a 30 day wait period before coverage will go into effect. Call your insurance agent soon to go over your policies and coverage. If you don’t already have flood insurance, discuss your options with your agent. For more information on flood insurance visit: floodsmart.gov