Fires are among the most destructive of all threats you face for your property. If a fire starts in your home, business or even your vehicle, it can cause extreme financial losses unless you have adequate fire insurance coverage. Protect yourself and those around you by installing a sufficient number of smoke detectors and fire extinguishers in your home, business and vehicle and by having evacuation plans in place in the event that a fire does start. Also, protect your finances by making sure that you have a sufficient amount of fire insurance covering your Alaska property. You can start by contacting insurance companies and comparing quotes for this coverage.
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Alaska Department of Public Safety Fire Statistics
- In 2012, fire fighters in Alaska responded to 2,644 fires.
- Of these, 738 were structure fires and 455 were vehicular fires.
- These fires resulted in 128 injuries and 23 fatalities.
- Fires in AK in that year caused $55,157,363 in property loss and damage.
- In 2012, fires in AK caused an average of $104.94 in damages every minute.
- Residential properties accounted for 74% of all structure fires in this state.
- Fire fighters responded to fire calls an average of once every 3 hours.
- Every 9 hours, they responded to a residential fire.
- Every 12 hours, they responded to a structure fire.
- Every 19 hours, they responded to a vehicular fire.
- On average, this state’s fire fighters respond to a vehicular fire once every 19 hours.
How Do I Get Fire Insurance?
A specialized form of property coverage, fire insurance is designed to compensate you for the costs associated with the repair or replacement of your property if it becomes damaged by a fire. This insurance is not something you have to buy as a separate policy; instead, it is typically included in the insurance policies you already have. If you own a home, business or vehicle and have insurance protection for this property, there is a good chance that you have coverage against fire damage as well.
It is important to be aware of how much coverage your currently policies afford you against fire damage. Review these policies carefully to ensure that you have adequate coverage in the event of a total loss. It is advisable to review your coverage amounts every three to five years, as property values can change. If your policy does not provide sufficient coverage, you may want to consider increasing your coverage limits or shopping for a more comprehensive insurance policy.
Fire Insurance Can Cover Damages to Your Alaska Home
Most residential fires are contained quickly and cause only a small amount of damage to the home and property. However, a fire can quickly grow out of control, and if it does, the destruction it leaves in its wake can be all-encompassing. According to the statistics provided by State Master, the cost of damages per residential fires in Alaska averages $16,207.
Regardless of whether you own or rent your home, you can purchase fire insurance to cover your personal property. The type of dwelling you reside in and your ownership status will determine which type of policy you will need to have.
- Traditional home owners: Homeowners insurance policies are designed to cover traditional and manufactured houses. These policies can provide you with coverage for both the structure and contents of the home. You may be required to purchase additional riders, or endorsements, to get full coverage for any exceptionally valuable property you may own, such as original artwork, jewelry and furs.
- Condo owners: Owners of cooperative-living type homes such as condos and townhouses can rely on their condo association’s master policy to provide coverage for the structure of your building in the event of a fire, but will need to purchase a condo insurance policy to cover their personal property. As with homeowners insurance, additional endorsements may be necessary in order to cover more valuable items.
- Renters: Renters do not need to worry about covering the structure of the building they live in, but they do need to cover their own personal property. Renters insurance is a very inexpensive way to ensure that you will be compensated for your losses if your personal property is damaged or destroyed in a fire.
- RV insurance: Those who own RVs can get fire insurance through an RV insurance policy. These policies are designed to provide compensation for fire damage whether the fire is the result of a collision or engine failure when the RV is being used as a vehicle, or caused by accidents within, such as a cooking fire or unattended candle, when the RV is being used as a home. Because you likely have a lot of personal property in your RV, you will need to be sure to have sufficient contents coverage as well as comprehensive insurance.
Fire Insurance Can Cover Damages to Your Alaska-Based Business
If you are one of Alaska’s many business owners, fire insurance may be necessary to protect the investment you have made in supplies, computers, furnishings and inventory for your company. For this reason, having a business insurance policy, which will include fire damage coverage, is strongly recommended. If your business is based at home, your homeowners insurance may cover the damages to business property, but some insurers require home business owners to purchase additional riders to qualify for this coverage
You can further protect your Alaska-based business from fire-related financial losses by including business-interruption coverage (also known as continuation-of-income coverage) with your business insurance policy. That way, if your business is forced to temporarily close or cease operations while fire damage is being repaired, it can still count on an income that will enable payment to creditors and salaried employees until normal operations can once again be resumed.
Fire Insurance Can Cover Damages to Your Vehicle
If your car or truck catches on fire as the result of an accident, either your collision insurance or the insurance of the at-fault driver is likely to cover the damages. However, the U.S. Fire Administration reports that most vehicular fires are the result of a mechanical failure. This means that they can start for noncollision related reasons. If this is the case, you will need to have comprehensive insurance coverage as part of your policy in order to be compensated for the damages.
Alaska’s state minimum auto insurance requirements include liability coverage only. Therefore if you have purchased a policy that only meets the state minimum requirements, you will not have comprehensive coverage. Comprehensive insurance is designed to cover damages sustained by your vehicle that are not collision related.
If you are still making payments on your car or truck, you most likely already have comprehensive insurance, as this coverage is typically required by financing companies. However, if your vehicle is paid off, this coverage is optional. If you are considering adding comprehensive coverage to your policy, it is a good idea to compare a variety of quotes to make sure that you are getting this added coverage at a competitive rate.
Get Help Obtaining Fire Insurance Quotes in Alaska
If you would like to learn more about fire insurance coverage, you can turn to one of the many independent insurance agents in the Trusted Choice® network. These agents can help you review and understand the fire coverage you already have in your currently insurance policies and can alert you to any coverage deficiencies they might find. If you are don't have sufficient coverage, your agent can help you find and compare competitively-priced policies that can best meet your needs.
Several Trusted Choice agents have offices right here in Alaska. Contact an agent near you to get more information and you can start reviewing fire insurance quotes in no time.