Hurricane season is here and we want you to be prepared.
Thanks to technological advances in meteorology, we can now know when an atmospheric disturbance approaches. Every year from June 1st to November 30, chances of being hit by a hurricane or tropical storm in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean region increases. Even though we are facing a period of drought, it doesn’t mean that we are exempt of these tropical systems. Hurricanes and tropical storms, as unpredictable as they are, must be taken seriously and that requires that we prepare. The following are things you should do before, during and after a storm or hurricane.
Before the storm or hurricane
- Take all necessary precautions to protect your property.The three more important areas to protect against damage are:
- doors (including the garage door)
- Eliminate all debris around your home. If you live in low lands or flood zones, go to a shelter. Take only what’s necessary, such as clothing and medications.
- Review your insurance policies. Make sure you have hurricane protection and a flood policy if you live in a flood prone area. Also make sure you have coverage for both the structure of your home and for you belongings. Keep handy a copy of your policy, loan number and banking entity if you have a mortgage. If you need more information about insurance visit popular.com/en/insurance or call Banco Popular’s licensed agents at 787-706-4111. We recommend that you look at insurance with a risk-management perspective. The cost of insurance is small when compared with an unexpected loss of a treasured asset in the event of a disaster.
- Take pictures of your home before the emergency. This will help you submit a claim.
- Have an emergency bag ready. Include clothes, canned food, flash lights, batteries, band-aids and medications in an emergency bag ready to use, along with a copy of important documents, such as birth certificates, passports and insurance policies. Store your bag near the front door or another area to which you will have easy access in case of an emergency. Inspect the contents every few months to make sure canned foods are not expired. In the event of a hurricane watch or warning, remember to also store your mobile phone and its charger when you are not using it in case you need to exit in a hurry.
During the Storm/Hurricane
- Stay in a safe place. The most important thing during a storm is to protect yourself and your family. Stay away form windows and doors because the wind can seriously damage them.
- Do not go out on the street. Stay away from rivers and streams.
- Disconnect all unnecessary electronic appliances to avoid damages from changes in voltage or receiving an electric shock if your property gets wet.
- Avoid fires. Select a battery flashlight instead of candles or gas lamps.
- Use the phone only for emergencies. To keep communicated use text messages instead.
- Protect your pets. Have food and water ready as well as a designated area for them indoors. Talk to a veterinarian if your pet need special attention or medications during the event.
After the Storm/Hurricane
- Assess if your property suffered any structural damage. Take pictures of all damaged property.
- If your are a Popular Insurance or Popular Risk Services client and have a claim call 787-706-4111, visit our offices at Corporate Office Park in Guaynabo, or Access our Claims Section in our webpage to submit your claim. When submitting your claim you will need your insurance policy number, and loan number if you have a mortgage, a brief description of damages and a monetary estimate. Visit our insurance Frequently Asked Questions for more details on the claims process.
- Protect your property for further damages. If a window broke cover it with wood or other material, but do not dispose of damaged property until an insurance adjuster has inspected it.
- Do not get near fallen electric cables. Do not touch anything that is in contact with them. Cables could be energized.
- Be careful turning on electric generators.
Prevention and planning are the best tools to guarantee the health and wellness of your loved ones. Visit www.popular.com/en/insurance and learn more about the policies we offer.