“Planning is bringing the future into the present so you can do something about it now.” Alan Lakein
By Christine Anderson Ferraris
The wildfires and evacuations in California had me thinking, what we would we do if we were told to evacuate in a day? What if we only had a few minutes? Where would we go, what would we take?
Living in Southern Arizona for several years now and having painfully observed the devastation of wildfires, I realize we have no documented plan. I write this today to encourage you to make an emergency evacuation plan for your home and possibly your business. I offer the following tips to help you create your emergency evacuation plan.
The website https://www.ready.gov/ is an amazing resource to help you create a plan for winter weather, wildfire, power outage, flooding or other type of emergency.
Pima County Works provides a dislocated worker hotline, and has a business section to help business owners: here is the website for more information: https://webcms.pima.gov/cms/One.aspx?portalId=169&pageId=538481
For business owners and families alike, an important component of your plan should be to understand how your property insurance coverage will and will not protect you, so I encourage you to call your insurance company and ask specific questions, such as:
What losses and the amount of coverage would you have if you experienced flooding, wildfire or other type of emergency, and where are they located in the policy?
What are the exclusions in the policy, and where are they located in the policy?
Are all costs to return a home to its condition covered by the policy, actual cash value v. replacement value?
Photograph and document the value of equipment and personal property so if you need to prove the value to an insurer you have the documentation to help with the claims process.
Finally, documenting your claim process in your emergency plan could save a lot of headaches. Ask your insurer what the requirements are to submit a claim. Also, there are professionals who can help you submit a claim, such as a public adjuster. A public adjuster can help prepare a claim and present it to the insurance company and talking with one now may help you prepare a better emergency plan.
We hope this information is helpful, please share it to help others plan for an emergency.
The information provided does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information is for general informational purposes only. This information may not constitute the most up-to-date information.Links provided are only for the convenience of the reader, A. Ferraris Law, PLLC and its members do not endorse the contents of the third-party references.
Christine Anderson Ferraris and her firm, A. Ferraris Law, assist consumers and business owners harmed by the government, or another business. She has been for several years the race director for the CV50/50 children’s trail run in Colossal Cave Mountain Park each November.