With the sudden ice storm impacting the area, people may soon be noticing damage to their homes from tree branches falling onto their roofs or on fences.

Whitten Insurance Agent Steve Whitten said that there are two different types of policies of insurance that one can buy for their home. The peril policy is the first type of coverage and it is the basic policy coverage. This coverage includes such things as fire, lightning, wind, hail, aircraft damage, riot damage, vehicular damage, smoke, explosion and vandalism.

“This is the most common type of insurance policy that people will purchase,” Whitten said. “It is the most common because most of the disasters that it will cover could happen.”

Another type of insurance policy is the all-risk policy. With this policy insurance buyers will pay all direct for physical loss. Exclusions to the policy is nuclear, war, flood and business pursuits.

Whitten said that the snow storm in December and the recent ice storm would be covered with the all-risk policy.

“If there becomes a build up of ice or snow on your roof that will cause the roof to cave in, with the all-risk insurance policy, you will be covered,” Whitten said.

He said that that policy may or may not cover damage if a tree branch froze over and landed on your roof.

“Vegetation usually is not covered however there sometimes will be exceptions to the rule,” Whitten said.

With the recent earthquakes in Haiti and a few that have happened in Oklahoma, earthquake insurance may be something that people could consider. However, State Farm Insurance Agent Don Creel said that there has not been much request for earthquake insurance in the area.

“We haven’t really had anyone requesting earthquake insurance,” Creel said. “The earthquakes that have occurred around here recently haven’t done much damage so there hasn’t been a real need for it.”

Creel noted that the earthquake insurance can be added to insurance policies. Some people do not think that they need earthquake coverage until it is too late. That tends to be the case with flood insurance, said Farmers Insurance Group agent Billie Price, who noted that the price for flood insurance differs upon where a person lives.

“The flood rates are based primarily off the flood zone the property is in,” Price said. “Of course the type of foundation age of the home and the number of floors play a role in that also.”

Whitten said that everyone is susceptible to flooding no matter where they live.

“Everyone is in a flood zone,” Whitten said. “Even if you are on top of a hill you are still in a flood zone.”

Flood insurance is a government based policy which is covered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

— Matt Tillson is a reporter for the Duncan Banner. He can be contacted at 580-255-5354 Ext. 142 or via e-mail at matt.tillson@duncanbanner.com.

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