Now is the time to make sure you’re ready for severe weather. We’ve seen it before: people stunned at how tropical storms and hurricanes can upend their lives for months…and sometimes even years. Chances are — if you’ve lived here for any length of time — your home is well-insured against Mother Nature. But what if you’re a business owner? That is a whole other story.
Michael Barry, Insurance Information Institute: There’s a number of things you can do in terms of a homeowner…there’s storm shutters, there’s fortified garage doors. In terms of a business, you may want to just go out and talk with an expert in terms of fortifying your property. Because we talk about flood insurance. Businesses can also get flood insurance through FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program. And by the way, the policy limits — meaning what you can be covered for — are much higher from the FEMA National Flood Insurance Program…business insurance coverage. For instance, you can insurance up to $500,000 in the contents and $500,000 on the belongings within the business. And then the other thing you have to look for is the business just in a hurricane prone area? You want to make sure you have Business Interruption coverage so that if a storm hits your property and puts you out of business for weeks, maybe months — that you have the resources to a temporary location and other expenses that you’re gonna incur.
Mark Friedlander, Insurance Information Institute: We recommend small businesses to have a disaster recovery plan. Because it’s amazing how many businesses never make it back after a natural disaster. They need to have that plan in place, need to have all of the employees aware of the plan…the elements of the plan, need to practice that plan. To actually do a mock drill to practice that plan. We have all that information on our website at III.org to show you the various steps that a small business can take to be prepared for disasters.