Survey: Most Florida Residents Aren’t Prepared for Hurricanes

May 11th, 2018 by Editor

About half of Florida’s homeowners haven’t taken recommended measures to safeguard their property against hurricanes, according to a new survey conducted by sliding door manufacturer Origin Global.

The finding comes as the National Weather Service marks Hurricane Preparedness Week (May 6–12)  ahead of the Atlantic hurricane season, which begins on June 1.

In a survey that asked 1,000 of the state’s residents about what measures they’ve taken to prepare for hurricanes,  less than one in seven (13.2 percent) said they had installed the correct doors to cope with this type of event, while roof protection was only an issue for 14.6 percent. A total of 18 percent said they had installed impact-resistant windows, and 16.4 percent had taken steps to secure outside objects from high winds.

However, a third (30.9 percent) said they had planned ahead by stocking up on emergency supplies, while just under a fifth (18.3 percent) have invested in storm shutters.

Surprisingly, half of respondents (50.2 percent) admitted having put none of the measures  in place to protect their home.

According to Florida’s Office for Coastal Management, in 2017 hurricanes Harvey, Maria and Irma combined to cause $265 billion in damages in the U.S. and Caribbean.

“Our findings show that, despite the severity of last year’s hurricane season and the susceptibility of Florida to the elements, a surprising number of residents have not protected their homes against damage which could potentially cost them thousands of dollars to repair,” said Joe Halsall, digital marketing manager at Origin Global. “And although hurricane insurance provides some peace of mind, your policy will only cover so much — with a high proportion of claims going unpaid.”

Data from the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation shows that of the 610,166 claims made by homeowners after Hurricane Irma, around a third were closed without payment.

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