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Are You Earthquake Savvy?

A significant earthquake on the east coast?  Who knew?

You might remember the magnitude 3.6 earthquake with the epicenter in Gaithersburg, Maryland that was felt in the Washington DC metro area on the morning of July 10, 2010. It was reportedly the first to hit the state since 1990.

earthquake aftershocks videoNow, just over a year later, comes the recent magnitude 5.8 earthquake centered in Mineral, Virginia, just south of Washington, DC.  While it is a rare event here on the east coast of the United States, it does make one wonder if it could it happen again.  Michael Oskin, Geological Professor at UC Davis tells Reuters News that there likely will be aftershocks felt days, weeks and even months following this earthquake and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) experts concur.

If you live and work in Maryland, Virginia, or surrounding states, would you be prepared to withstand an earthquake and its aftershocks? You might find that you need to be self-sustaining for hours or perhaps even days afterwards.  So access to food, water, medications and other essentials would become very important.

Earthquakes can damage highway bridges and bring traffic to a stop and disrupt rail and air traffic as well.  In the recent earthquake, cell phone service was unreliable.  If you could not reach your family, would they know what to do, where to go?  Often in such an emergency, a text message will go through where a voice message will not.  Do you have the necessary phone numbers to be able to send text messages as well as phone calls?


Earthquakes can cause structural damage to homes and other buildings, disrupt gas and electrical lines, shatter glass and otherwise create the potential for severe injury.  Have you taken precautions to prepare your home to withstand earthquake damage?

Perhaps it’s time to make a plan, just in case.  FEMA offers us a valuable earthquake resource website, with detailed checklists for what to do before, during and after an earthquake.

In anticipation of possible earthquake damage, you will want to know in advance that your insurance will cover it.  Typically, a standard homeowners policy does not include damage from earthquakes, but special coverages are available depending upon the state in which you live and the insurance company that issues your policy. Often, damage from post-earthquake fires will be covered and vehicle damage from earthquakes could be covered by special provisions in your auto insurance policy.  It is very important to check with your insurance agent so that you are prepared in case you have losses after an earthquake.

Here at Community Insurance Services of Maryland LLC, our professional agents can review your current insurance policies and discuss your best option to be prepared for earthquake damage.  Contact us anytime, we welcome the opportunity to be of help.

Wednesday, 07 September 2011 20:07

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Community Insurance Services consistently provides quality, high value service in meeting our insurance needs. The team, especially Heather and Ginger, is consistently thoughtful, professional, knowledgeable, and kind. They are quick in response to questions with meaningful answers and transparent when they need to research before answering because they want to provide the best right answer. One of the great strengths of Community Insurance Services is that they care about their clients as friends and family.--- Kevin B.