Earthquake insurance - do you have it?

January 2011 and there is another earthquake. A strong earthquake rattled central Chile at the beginning of the year but this time did not cause serious injuries or damages.

The U.S. Geological Survey measured the quake at magnitude 7.1, 2/10 of a point higher than the University of Chile's calculation.

The February 27, 2010 magnitude 8.8 earthquake killed 486 people, left 79 missing and caused billions in damage, according to official tallies. The president's office said 220,000 homes were lost.

On November 17, 2009 an earthquake and at least two aftershocks struck off the coast of British Columbia. It shook some houses and scared residents throughout the North Coast region.

The first quake had a magnitude of 6.6 and was recorded just off the southern tip of Haida Gwaii, also known as the Queen Charlotte Islands, around 7:30 a.m. PT. Seven minutes later it was followed by a second quake with a magnitude of 5.7., and shortly afterward by a third of about magnitude 3.0.

It is best for people in British Columbia to be prepared. Check out this website as it covers the steps you should be taking now and then later, if and when an earthquake does happen.

There is great concern about the Cascadia subduction zone, running from Vancouver Island to northern California. This is one of the most volatile geologic fault lines in the world.

Unlike the well known San Andreas fault, which has the potential of generating earthquakes in the 7–8 range, the Cascadia fault line has the potential of releasing mega quakes in the magnitude 9 range.

If there was a quake similar to the Sumatra incident then we would see devastation in a wide area including Vancouver, British Columbia, Victoria, British Columbia, and Seattle, Washington, a densely populated area with close to 6 million residents.

The insurance answer

Earthquake is excluded from your home and business insurance policies. To get it put on your policy you will need to specifically request it. This will cost extra. There is also likely a higher than normal deductible.

Talk to your insurance agent or broker to find out if you have insurance coverage for earthquake. Take control of your insurance.