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CA Department of Insurance

Californians prepare for the big one with statewide earthquake drill

News: 2015 Press Release

For Release: October 15, 2015
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
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Californians prepare for the big one with statewide earthquake drill
Insurance Commissioner Jones urges residents to take steps to avoid injury and loss

SACRAMENTO, Calif.- Millions of Californians across the state dropped, covered and held on today as they participated in the Great Shakeout earthquake drill. Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones is reminding Californians that experts have noted that many of the state's earthquake faults are long overdue to rupture and residents should prepare for that reality.

The U.S. Geological Survey released the results of an earthquake hazard study that concluded the likelihood that California will experience a magnitude eight or larger earthquake in the next 30 years has increased. This should serve as awake-up call for Californians.

"We know it's not a question of if a big quake will strike, but when," said Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. "Make sure you do all you can to protect yourself and your loved ones from injury and your home and belongings from devastating loss."

Residents should know the standard homeowner or renter policy does not provide coverage for earthquake losses. With only about 10 percent of homeowners carrying earthquake coverage, millions have chosen to be self-insured and will bear the cost of recovery on their own.

The commissioner also urges consumers to take another look at earthquake insurance. Some insurers, including the California Earthquake Authority, have made product improvements, developed more coverage options, and even reduced rates. "Earthquake insurance is worth another look," said Jones. "Every resident should explore their options and make an informed decision about how to best protect their family and their assets."

Even a moderate temblor can cause significant damage and cause injury. The most common call for first responders is for injuries caused by flying objects and falling furniture. For about $100 residents can prevent injuries and damage to their belongings by using appliance and furniture straps and cabinet latches.

The California Department of Insurance, established in 1868, is the largest consumer protection agency in California. Insurers collect $310 billion in premiums annually in California. Since 2011 the California Department of Insurance received more than 1,000,000 calls from consumers and helped recover over $469 million in claims and premiums. Please visit the Department of Insurance website at Non-media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800.927.4357. Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD), please dial 800.482.4833.

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