Weather Center

Prepare for the Unexpected

By Paula Felps 3.19.14

Part of handling unexpected situations is thinking them through in advance and knowing what you need to do if they occur. Planning ahead can make even the direst situations manageable. Here’s what to do next Here’s what to do immediately following one of these unexpected events.

Your home is damaged by storms

Whether it’s a tornado, flood, or other natural disaster, storm damage can occur with little warning at any time of the year. Here are five steps to take:

  1. Make sure that your family is safe. Although it’s natural to want to try to recover items, remember that possessions can be replaced, people can’t.
  2. Get to a safe place, such as a friend/relative’s home or a motel.
  3. Contact your insurance agent and let him or her know what damage you’ve suffered.
  4. Secure the house to prevent further damage. Cover holes in the roof, board up broken windows, etc.
  5. Contact your closest relatives and let them know you’re safe.

Your home is burglarized

Coming home and discovering you’ve been burglarized leaves you feeling vulnerable. Do these things right away:

  1. If you realize your home has been robbed before you go inside, return to your car and lock the doors or go to a neighbor’s home.
  2. Call 911.
  3. Call your insurance agent. Although you’ll need a police report to file a claim, notify your agent immediately.
  4. List the value of all missing items for your insurance agent.
  5. Arrange for a repairman to fix any damaged doors or windows.