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PNW and Western Washington are Due for a BIG Earthquake Experts Say

By March 24, 2021March 26th, 2021Insurance

Mosaic Insurance Alliance can help you get earthquake insurance through top carriers like Arrowhead and Geovera

Blog - Collapsing House with Mosaic Logs and the PNW is Long Past Due for a BIG Earthquake Text

As an independent insurance agency, Mosaic provides personalized services to every client. We can help you explore your commercial earthquake insurance and personal earthquake insurance options.

Many in the Pacific Northwest (PNW) remember the big Nisqually earthquake that happened on February 28, 2001. Olympia, Marysville, Seattle, Snohomish, Everett, and Tacoma are just some of the cities in the southern end of Puget Sound that felt the earthquake that day and experienced damages.

Nisqually is the last largest earthquake that the Washington area has faced, and being 20 years ago, experts say that the area is way past due for another big one. According to King 5 News, with a magnitude of 6.8, the Nisqually earthquake that lasted almost 1 straight minute was deemed as a strong quake (magnitude of 6.3 and above) that caused at least 2 billion in damages and injured more than 400 people.

“The Big One” that Washington (and the rest of the PNW) is due for has been mentioned here and there each year for the last decade or so by various experts. The buzz has recently heightened again with new frequent quakes in Indonesia and ones closer to home in places like Oregon. On December 28, 2020, a 5.7 magnitude earthquake happened less than 200 miles off the coast of Oregon. According to Oregon news station, KGW, that earthquake was the eighth largest one reported off the Oregon coast in the last decade.

Indonesia recently experienced a 6.2 magnitude earthquake in January 2021 that killed at least 42 people. While Indonesia is pretty far away from the United States, the recent earthquakes and resulting struggles that they have been through are not going unnoticed by Americans. “The Big One” seems to be coming to mind more often since 2021 has started.

What can the public do to protect against a possible earthquake?

First, know what to do before, during, and after an earthquake. The American Red Cross has steps and tips here that are summarized below:

What to do before an earthquake:

  • Have emergency kits ready (water, food, first-aid, flashlights, batteries, battery radio, etc.).
  • Create and review evacuation plans (for kids, adults, and pets).
  • Keep updated in local, state, and country news.
  • Review local state/city natural disaster response plans.
  • Read up on earthquake safety and share the information with your family.
  • Determine safe places at home, school, work, and places that you frequent often.
  • Practice home safety (avoid dangerous décor, make sure light fixtures are secure, do not hang heavy items, avoid putting heavy items high in the air, etc.).

What to do during an earthquake:

What to do if you are inside during an earthquake…

  • Drop, cover, and hold on.
  • Protect your head and torso.
  • Move as little as possible.
  • Stay inside until shaking has stopped and it is safe to go outside (unless you smell gas, then get out of the building ASAP).

What to do if you are outside during an earthquake…

  • Drop to the ground in a clear spot safe spot (away from power lines, buildings, trees, and streetlights).
  • Stay where you are until the shaking stops.
  • Pull over if you are in a car (avoid bridges, overpasses, and powerlines if you can).
  • If a power line falls on your car, remain inside until professionals tell you it is safe to exit.

What to do after an earthquake:

  • Stay up-to-date with the news.
  • Be educated on what places are unsafe to go, especially if you are finding a route back home. Take the advice of authorities.
  • Check yourself for injuries before helping a trapped or injured person.
  • Determine if you or those around you need medical help.
  • Drop, cover, and hold on if there are aftershocks.
  • Extinguish small nearby fires if you have the equipment to safely do so.
  • If your home or the building you are in is not safe, evacuate everyone immediately.
  • If you are in your car, you can continue driving after the shaking stops. Be very cautious! Avoid bridges and ramps that you think could have been damaged. Also, be prepared for possible traffic light outages.
  • Know what to do when cleaning and repairing your home/business after an earthquake. Tips here.
  • Find ways to be more prepared next time. Here is a handy safety checklist.

In addition to having basic earthquake knowledge and practicing safety protocols, getting earthquake insurance can help protect homes, businesses, and other assets from expensive damages and losses. Earthquake loss can really make or break a business, as well as destroy a lifetime of family savings as people recover from damages to buildings, homes, cars, etc. With the economy already hurting due to COVID-19, the likelihood of bankruptcy increases significantly if a big earthquake were to occur sometime soon. The last thing the public wants is to wish is that they had insurance before a major natural disaster like an earthquake.

As an independent insurance agency, Mosaic Insurance Alliance, LLC has access to leading insurance carriers in the field, like Arrowhead General Insurance Agency, Geovera Insurance, Travelers Insurance, and PEMCO Insurance.

Arrowhead, for example, has a residential earthquake insurance plan that effectively tailors to the needs of customers in the PNW. The highly customizable design of the insurance plan helps meet the needs of customers in the PNW by being not only flexible, but affordable as well. With Arrowhead’s Value Select earthquake insurance program, PNW homeowners can make room in their budget for additional protection that they might really need to rely on one day. Additionally, through Arrowhead’s earthquake coverage advantage, clients will be able to get higher limits with lower deductibles, have access to broader coverage, choose separate sublimits for different types of losses, have the option to use recurring payments, and setup convenient payment plans if interested.

Those who live in areas that are prone to seismic activity should definitely consider earthquake coverage, and in some cases might be required to have it. For those that are unsure of their need for earthquake insurance, contact Mosaic Insurance for coverage overview, questions, and a free quote. An independent agent at Mosaic Insurance Alliance can be reached at 425-320-4280 or emailed at info@mosaicia.com. You can also fill out our Get A Quote form here.

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