Don't get blown away this tornado season: GEICO offers tips to help you stay safe

WASHINGTON, D.C, April 9, 2016 – According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), approximately 1,200 tornadoes hit the U.S. each year. GEICO offers a few important tips to help you protect yourself, your family and your belongings:

  1. Put together a disaster supply kit – Gather important supplies such as battery-powered flashlights and radios, extra batteries, a first-aid kit, blankets, personal hygiene products, and a spare change of clothes. Also consider specialty items for children, elderly and pets.
  2. Build an emergency communication and evacuation plan – Pick a safe place to meet in the event that your family is separated during a storm. Determine how you will get in touch with loved ones to let them know you are safe.
  3. Designate a safe room within your home – Select a place in your home where you and your family will be most safe during a storm. The basement or an interior room on the main level typically provides the best protection against severe weather.
  4. Stock up on food and water – Always keep a supply of non-perishable food and water to last each family member at least a week. One gallon of water per person, per day is the suggested amount. Also make sure you have access to a manual can opener and other important utensils you may need.
  5. Store important documents in a safe location – Consider investing in a safe box to store your important documents, photos and other valuables.
  6. Create a home inventory – Keep an up-to-date inventory of all items in your home. Include photos of valuables such as electronics and jewelry. This may help speed up the claims process if damage occurs as a result of the storm.
  7. Review your insurance coverage – Contact your insurance carrier to find out if you're fully protected. Use your home inventory to help determine if you have purchased enough insurance.
  8. Pay attention to weather alerts – Be aware of weather alerts and updates. In the event that a tornado watch or tornado warning is issued, seek shelter immediately and follow any official instructions from local or national officials.

For more information on how to stay safe when a tornado hits, visit GEICO's Catastrophe Center. In the event of a severe tornado, GEICO's Catastrophe Response (CAT) Team will be on standby to assist. GEICO policyholders who need to report a loss can log on to the new mobile app, GEICO's Claims Center, or call (800) 841-3000 24 hours a day.

GEICO (Government Employees Insurance Company) is a member of the Berkshire Hathaway family of companies and is the second-largest private passenger auto insurance company in the United States. GEICO, which was founded in 1936, provides millions of auto insurance quotes to U.S. drivers annually. The company is pleased to serve more than 14 million private passenger customers and insures more than 23 million vehicles (auto & cycle).

Using GEICO's online service center, policyholders can purchase policies, make policy changes, report claims and print insurance ID cards. Policyholders can also connect to GEICO through the GEICO App, reach a representative over the phone or visit a GEICO local agent.

GEICO also provides insurance quotes on motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), boats, travel trailers and motorhomes (RVs). Coverage for life, homes and apartments is written by non-affiliated insurance companies and is secured through the GEICO Insurance Agency. Commercial auto insurance and personal umbrella protection are also available.

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