Progressive Offers Tips to Keep Drivers and Vehicles Safe as Hurricane Frances Approaches

September 2, 2004

After Charley’s passage the Progressive Group of insurance companies, the third largest auto insurer in the U.S. and insurer of about one in 10 Florida drivers, has had a lot of experience with storm related claims.

The company has issued a bulletin, offering Florida’s drivers and boat owners some timely tips as Frances approaches. Surprisingly, Progressive said that while many of the some 6000 claims it has handled “resulted from damage caused by flooding, a majority were due to vehicles being struck by debris, such as fallen trees, utility poles or other large objects felled by Charley’s strong winds.”

It offers Florida’s beleaguered residents the following advice:
— Drivers in the hurricane’s path who are not going to be driving their car or recreational vehicle should park it on higher ground, as close as possible to a sturdy building. If you have to park it outdoors, park it away from trees, poles or other large objects that may topple onto it.
— As soon as possible move your boat inland where it’s far more likely to survive the storm. Make sure you have everything you need to secure your boat, including extra lines, chafe protection, fenders, anchors, port plugs, duct tape and extra batteries.
— Avoid driving through standing water. The average automobile can be swept off the road in 12 inches of moving water.
— When you’re evacuating or returning following a storm, stay away from standing water on roads and in parking lots. If you come upon a flooded street, take an alternate route. Water covered roads are prone to collapse.

Progressive also reminded its customers to call 1-800-PROGRESSIVE (1-800-776-4737), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to report claims.

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