Florida residents and visitors should keep a close watch on Tropical Storm / Hurricane Elsa. AAA provides advice to help residents prepare their families and properties for the storm, and offers information on gasoline supplies.
What residents can do now:
- Develop an evacuation plan with multiple destinations
- Review insurance policies and catalog assets
- Collect and protect critical documents and records
- Prepare your house, inspect your roof and prune trees and shrubs
- Store food, water, and emergency supplies for at least 3 days
- Sign up for local weather alerts and warnings
“Behind the wheel is the last place you should be if Elsa hits Florida,” said Mark Jenkins, spokesperson for AAA – The Auto Club Group. “Driving in extreme weather conditions puts your life and the lives of first responders who may need to come to your rescue at risk. “
“AAA urges Floridians to make a plan now,” Jenkins continued. “If you plan to evacuate, leave early. If you’re planning on staying home, get the supplies you need now, so you don’t have to take a last-minute trip in bad weather.
Tips for driving on wet roads
- Slow down
- Increase your tracking distance
- Turn your headlights at
- Turn on your hazard lights disabled
- Avoid using cruise control
- Avoid flooded areas
- In case of poor visibility, park in a safe place and wait for the rain to subside
Don’t ignore evacuation warnings
More than a quarter of Floridians (29%) ignore evacuation warnings, recent report says AAA survey. Sixty percent of those who would evacuate say they would only leave if the hurricane was Category 3 or stronger.
Do not accumulate gasoline
AAA discourages drivers from hoarding gasoline before the storm hits. Instead, take only what you need.
“Gas outages” are always possible at gas stations in the days leading up to a storm. However, this is not the result of a “fuel shortage”. These outages are due to increased demand.
Gas stations can only hold a limited amount of fuel at any one time. If every driver stops to fill a tank and fill an extra gas can, these pumps will run dry quickly.
Despite the storm’s trajectory, refineries will continue to produce fuel and ship it to Florida. This gasoline arrives at ports in Florida and is delivered by tanker truck to gas stations in the region. These deliveries will continue until weather conditions make this operation unsafe.
It’s too late for flood insurance
The potential for storm surges and heavy downpours raises concerns about residential flooding. Due to a 30 day waiting period, it is too late to purchase flood insurance for this storm. However, there are a few things residents can do now to protect their property from rising waters.
Tips for avoiding flooding in your home:
- Place plastic sheeting and sandbags at door openings
- Check and seal openings in the roof, windows and doors
- Clear debris from gutters, drains and downspouts
Plan for future storms
“This is the first of what could be many storms targeting Florida over the next few months,” said Jennifer Pintacuda, president of Florida-based AAA insurance provider Auto Club Insurance Company of Florida. “After Elsa has passed, we encourage Floridians to speak to an agent about a flood insurance policy, to make sure they are protected for the next major storm.”
Top Reasons To Get Flood Insurance After Elsa Passes
- There is a 30 day waiting period.
- $ 69,000 was the average claim for flooding from 2005 to 2020.
- Home insurance does not normally cover flooding.
- Each zone is a flood zone; almost 20% of annual flood compensation claims come from homes in low risk areas.
- One inch of flooding can cause $ 27,000 in damage to your home.
A “preferred risk” flood insurance policy can cost about a dollar a day for coverage of $ 75,000 for structural damage and $ 30,000 for damage to contents inside the home.
* Coverage is subject to all terms, conditions, exclusions and limitations of the policy.
Only 13% of Florida households have flood insurance, although many more households are at imminent risk of flooding. New research shows more than 100,000 additional properties in Florida are at substantial risk of flooding compared to FEMA flood maps.
“Flooding is expected to be a major concern for Florida residents whether or not they live in a high-risk flood area,” Pintacuda said. “Even low-risk areas can be flooded if a hurricane flies over for several days. “
The AAA Consumer Pulse ™ survey was conducted online with residents living in Florida from March 12-18, 2021. A total of 400 residents responded to the survey. The survey results requested from all respondents have a maximum margin of error of ± 4.9% points. Responses are weighted by age and sex to ensure a reliable and accurate representation of the adult population (18+) in Florida.