Hurricane Isaac was the most recent serious storm to remind residents in the Gulf Coast and homeowners, even inland in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, to have an evacuation plan in place.
As Houston insurance claim attorneys, we understand how important your home is; however, it is more important to survive a hurricane than to stay in your home. While no homeowner wants to lose everything they own in a storm, staying in your home will not save your residence. This is why it is important to prepare for a hurricane ahead of time and know when to get out to save yourself, your family, and your pets.
Importance of Having an Evacuation Plan in Place
Everyone in the Gulf is vulnerable to tropical storms, hurricanes, tornados, and flooding. For this reason, it is critical to have an evacuation plan prior to any natural disaster.
- Know your options ahead of time. Identify where you and your family can go and have multiple options such as a relative’s home outside of town, a shelter, or even a hotel. Make sure you have those phone numbers saved in your cell phone for immediate access in an emergency.
- Have important information already gathered. Keep IDs, passports, Social Security cards, insurance policies, and other important paperwork in a safe place. Make sure you can grab this information in a moment’s notice with ease.
- Have an evacuation route mapped out. It is wise to carry a map of the area in your car so that you have other route alternatives in case of a road closure or flooding in the area.
- Make sure your vehicle is in working order. Sometimes during disasters, public transportation may be closed. It is critical to your safety that you have a working car and a planned out evacuation route.
Lessons from Hurricane Isaac
Melanie Martinez, a bus driver living in Braithwaite, Louisiana, in the Plaquemines Parish, was ordered to evacuate right before Hurricane Isaac began barreling toward her home. As her family, including her husband and her 74-year-old mother on dialysis, was trying to flee, their car wouldn’t start. As they tried to get the car started, the water started coming so fast causing them to take shelter in their attic, which also started flooding with water.
According to Martinez, “We thought we were going to die in that house; the water was coming up so fast. My husband used a hammer to put a hole in the roof but it broke. We used our hands and feet to punch the hole.” Thankfully, they were rescued by a neighbor; however, their house quickly flooded.
While saving a home is important, it is more important to save your life and rely on your insurance coverage to repair your house following the storm. If you suffered property damages and losses from Isaac, you should call a skilled insurance claim attorney for help with your residential insurance claim at the Voss Law Firm at 888-614-7730 for a free consultation. Also, request a free copy of our book Disputes With Your Insurance Company – What All Consumers Need to Know.