Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Earthquake Insurance & Preparation

Living in Southern California we are at risk of earthquakes every year. With the 4.4 earthquake we felt this morning we should make sure our homes are covered. It is important that every homeowner protects their biggest investment by getting earthquake insurance. A basic homeowners policy does not cover earthquake insurance so you will have to buy a separate policy. Rates will vary by each insurance company and also by the age of your home, whether your home is made of wood or brick, and how close your home is to a fault line. Besides having earthquake insurance, every family should have an earthquake kit. According to the American Red Cross, here are some items that every family should include in their kit:

-At least a three-day supply of water per person (two quarts for drinking, two quarts for each person in your household for food preparation/sanitation)
-Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables
-Canned juices, milk, soup
-Sugar, salt, pepper
-High energy foods such as peanut butter, jelly, crackers, granola bars, trail mix; foods that will not increase thirst
-Pet food, at least one ounce per animal pound per day
-First aid kit with sterile adhesive bandages in assorted sizes, safety pins, cleansing agent/soap, latex gloves (2 pairs), sunscree, gauze pads in assorted sizes, non-prescription drugs such as Pain relievers, Anti-diarrhea medicines, & Antacid, scissors, tweezers, needle, moistened towelettes, antiseptic, thermometer, tongue blades, and tube of petroleum jelly or other lubricant
-Paper cups, plates, and plastic utensils
-Battery-operated radio and extra batteries
-Flashlight and extra batteries
-Cash or traveler's checks, in case banks are closed in the days following an earthquake
-Non-electric can opener or a utility knife
-Small fire extinguisher
-Matches in a waterproof container
-Aluminum foil
-Plastic storage containers
-Signal flare
-Needles, thread
-Wrench, to turn off gas and water
-Toilet paper
-Soap, liquid detergent
-Feminine supplies
-Plastic garbage bags and ties
-Plastic bucket with tight lid
-Household chlorine bleach
-Poop bags and scooper for pet waste
-Sturdy shoes or work boots (keep near your bed)
-Blankets or sleeping bags
-Warm clothing
-Spare eyeglasses

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