Known mostly for its earthquake risk, California also faces the possibility of devastating tornado damage. A tornado, even a low-grade F1 or F0, as is common in this state, can cause massive destruction to any property in its path. It is, therefore, important that you protect your valuables with suitable tornado insurance. This coverage is most likely already included as part of the insurance policies you already have, but you should take the time to ensure that your coverage limits are adequate to protect your finances in case a twister causes you extensive property loss. If you don't have coverage, now is a great time to start reviewing tornado insurance quotes.
California Tornado Facts
- California is the 32nd mostly likely U.S. state to suffer a tornado strike.
- This state experiences an average of five tornadoes a year.
- CA tornadoes are most likely expected in the following counties:
- Los Angeles County
- Orange County
- San Bernardino County
- San Diego County
- Fresno County
- Between 1950 and 1994, 214 tornadoes touched down in California and caused more than $63 million in damage.
Is Tornado Insurance Necessary in California?
California is far from the area of the country known as Tornado Alley, and most of the tornadoes that touch down in this state are relatively weak, with speeds lower than 65 miles per hour. Therefore, residents may wonder why they should invest in tornado insurance. The fact is that even a weak tornado can cause major damage and sometimes twisters of an F2 rating do strike in this state. When this happens, those who are affected can be glad they have tornado insurance coverage.
Tornado insurance is not something you purchase as a standalone policy. It is typically included in the coverage you already have such as homeowners and auto insurance. As a resident of California, you should review your current coverage to ensure that you have proper coverage against this rare but real threat.
Make Sure Your Home Has Sufficient Coverage
Whether you own or rent your home, you may find yourself in need of coverage if a tornado touches down and causes destruction where you live. The heavy winds of a tornado can cause destruction to roofs and windows, thereby damaging the property within, as well as outside, the home.
Most home, condo and renters insurance policies include coverage against tornadoes, but if you have a named peril policy and have not specifically included tornadoes as a covered hazard, you will not have coverage. Be sure to check your policy to be certain that you have the necessary tornado insurance to protect your home and belongings.
Also, it is important to review your policy every three to five years. If you are a homeowner and the value of your house has gone up significantly since you purchased your policy, your current structural coverage limits may not provide adequate compensation if a twister should destroy your house. Similarly, homeowners and renters should review their contents coverage limits to ensure that the amounts are high enough to provide sufficient compensation for damage to personal belonging.
Be aware that many home and renters insurance policies will require you to purchase additional riders to receive full compensation for extremely valuable items such as original artwork, jewelry and family heirlooms. If you are in doubt, contact your insurance company or a designated representative to find out if you need to take any additional steps to acquire adequate coverage.
You Can Insure Your Vehicle Against Tornadoes
Let’s face it: vehicles are expensive. Damage to your vehicle can lead to anger, frustration and financial hardship. A tornado can damage your vehicle in a number of ways: it can cause trees to uproot and fall on your car or truck; it can lead to flying debris that can break windows, dent the frame or scratch the paint; it can cause the garage where the car is parked to collapse on it; or, if you are driving your car at the time of the storm, it can cause you to have a collision.
Fortunately, you can get coverage against these hazards by including the following coverage options with your policy. The law does not require these options, but lenders typically require them if you have financed the purchase of your vehicle and are still making payments:
- Comprehensive coverage: This covers damage to your vehicle from non-collision-related causes. If a tornado damages your parked car or truck, you can submit a claim on your comprehensive coverage to receive compensation for its repair or replacement.
- Collision coverage: This compensates you for the repair or replacement of your vehicle if a collision results in its damage, regardless of fault. This means that if heavy winds cause you to drive off the road and crash or tornado-related low visibility causes you to have a collision with another vehicle, you may have coverage for the resulting costs.
Get Help Comparing Tornado Insurance Quotes in California
Are you uncertain whether you have sufficient coverage against tornado damage? It can sometimes be difficult to navigate through the details of insurance policies and quotes or to determine how much coverage is enough. An independent insurance agent in the Trusted Choice® network can help you evaluate your currently held policies, offer you advice and provide you with a selection of competitively priced policies for your consideration.
Contact a Trusted Choice agent near you to get more information so you can start comparing tornado insurance quotes for your California properties.