Missouri agency reviewing earthquake insurance policies

Monday, July 27, 2009 | 3:42 p.m. CDT

JEFFERSON CITY — The state Insurance Department wants to clear up any consumer confusion about getting earthquake insurance in Missouri.

Insurance director John Huff says he was asked during a recent conference of the Missouri Association of Insurance Agents about the availability and cost of earthquake insurance, especially in the New Madrid seismic zone.

Huff says his department is surveying the 20 largest homeowner insurers in Missouri to find out what earthquake coverage they offer, along with rates and deductibles.

A task force created by former Gov. Matt Blunt reported last year that Missouri is the nation's third-largest market for earthquake insurance. In 2007, Missouri homeowners and businesses spent about $80 million on earthquake coverage. Only California and Washington spent more.


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Charles Dudley Jr July 27, 2009 | 4:18 p.m.

If the New Madrid fault ever cuts loose alot of people who buy into will be covered and then the rest will be begging FEMA and the Government for the rest of the hand out.

People if they own their home and can afford it should be covered for fire,flood,earth quake and other natural disasters.

(Report Comment)
Richard Guy July 27, 2009 | 6:49 p.m.

I am a Structural Engineer who has done several earthquake insurance claims in the past. Insurance companies could save millions and in the process many lives by insisting on a simple in-house innovation for all premises they insure. The majority of residential structures are not designed to resist earthquake shocks. A simple innovation within each residence could ensure low fatality in event of a major earthquake and it would also be an incentive to insurance companies to lower their premiums. Municipalities could insist on this innovation and elicit better premium rates from insurance companies on behalf of their citizens. Contact me at

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking July 28, 2009 | 7:45 a.m.

Actually, the risk of a big quake here may be becoming less. The New Madrid fault is not like fault lines that are at tectonic plate boundaries. A study released a few months ago measured the movement of the ground around the fault line and found it was not moving like models said it would.


(Report Comment)
Charles Dudley Jr July 28, 2009 | 9:00 a.m.

In 1906 San Fran thought they were safe too. Ya right. Nothing is fool proof not even your figures Mark.

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking July 28, 2009 | 4:00 p.m.

I'm not canceling the earthquake rider on my home insurance just yet, Chuck. But it does sound promising...


(Report Comment)

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