Data from the Insurance Information Network of California has shown that less than 12 percent of homeowners within the state were protected by earthquake insurance in 2010, and that less than 10 percent of businesses had this protection.
According to the California Earthquake Authority’s CEO, Glenn Pomeroy, the standard insurance coverage for homes and businesses will not provide protection against the damage resulting from a tremor. This organization is nonprofit and works to offer homeowners in California affordable earthquake insurance products.
Pomeroy also stated that among homeowners without any form of property coverage at all, the percentage of those without of earthquake insurance is even greater.
The Great California ShakeOut event, which is the fourth annual occurrence of its nature, is one that focuses on the need across the state for preparations in the case of a major earthquake and on the response practices used when it happens. This year’s event will look into the low percentage of homeowners and business owners with earthquake insurance and the discrepancy between that and the actual threat of an earthquake that could cause damage.
The organizers of ShakeOut anticipate a state-wide participation of over 8 million.
A Risk Management Solutions study performed in 2007 examined the possible costs in the case that another major quake should strike Southern California, such as one mirroring the 1857 Fort Tejon quake which was centered near Bakersfield, with a magnitude of 7.9. Their estimates showed that there would be approximately $150 billion in damage to industries, businesses, and homes should such an event reoccur. That said, only $15 billion to $20 billion of that total would have been protected by insurance.