Hurricane Wilma, October 21, 1215Z (NOAA)
"Why us?" Florida Governor Jeb Bush lamented Wednesday. With Hurricane Wilma forecast to hang a hard right around Cuba and slam into Florida sometime Monday, you can understand the frustration. Officials have already started to evacuate the Florida Keys.
Evacuation is the best protection for your airplane, too, if it's in a hurricane's forecast path. (See AOPA's suggestions on what else you can do to protect your airplane if you can't relocate it.)
The AOPA Insurance Agency reminds pilots that your insurance policy may pay some of the expenses to move your aircraft to a safer location. And that includes hiring a ferry pilot if you can't fly it out yourself. Check to see if you have Hurricane Protection Coverage. AOPA members insured with AIG Aviation through the AOPA Insurance Agency automatically have this coverage as part of their Broad Coverage Endorsement.
Check your policy for additional details or call your broker. If you are insured through the AOPA Insurance Agency, contact them at 800/622-AOPA (2672) for more information on Hurricane Protection Coverage.
Hurricane Protection Coverage kicks in when the National Weather Service issues a hurricane watch or warning for the area where your aircraft is principally based. The insurance company will reimburse you for a portion of the reasonable costs associated with protecting your aircraft by relocating it outside of the hurricane's predicted path.
You must already have physical damage (hull) coverage in force, and the aircraft must be relocated to another airport that is outside the warning or watch area and at least 100 nm distance from home base. Reimbursement is usually limited to $500 or 50 percent of the total cost of the relocation, whichever is less.
Updated: October 21, 2005, 10:07 a.m. EDT