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Tropical Storm Nicole Targets Florida; AAA Provides Safety and Insurance Tips to Help Residents Prepare

Prepare your property and review your insurance policies

Tropical Storm Nicole is approaching Florida, with the potential of reaching hurricane status before making landfall. With the expectation of severe weather, AAA – The Auto Club Group is providing insurance and safety advice to help residents get ready.

"While Tropical Storm Nicole is not expected to be as severe as Hurricane Ian, it's still important that you take the storm seriously and be prepared," said Jennifer Pintacuda, President of AAA's Florida-based insurance providers. "Use the remaining time to gather supplies, fortify your home and document your belongings. That way if you do suffer damage, it will be easier to file a claim and expedite the repair process.

AAA provides the following insurance advice:

  • Review your home insurance policies now. Contact your provider to ensure you have adequate coverage for any damages. If you do not have flood insurance, it's too late to get a new policy for this storm.
  • Check your auto insurance policy to ensure you have "comprehensive" coverage. This helps with vehicle damage like flooding or if a tree falls on it.
  • Store important documents in a portable waterproof container. Documents could include insurance policy information, birth certificates, social security cards, and more.
  • Take Inventory. Document your belongings by walking through your home with a video camera or smart phone. Keep a record of large purchases including the cost of the item, purchase date, and model and serial numbers.
  • Prepare your home. Trim trees near your house. Ensure you have materials to make sand bags and board up windows, if necessary. Bring in loose items like patio furniture, bikes and children's toys – which could all turn into dangerous projectiles in strong winds.

Safety Tips for Drivers

"The wind and rain from this storm will create dangerous driving conditions on the road," said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA – The Auto Club Group. "AAA will provide roadside assistance until conditions deteriorate and it's no longer safe. As a result, we encourage drivers to heed the advice of local authorities, stay off the roads and in a safe place as the storm passes."

If you must drive in the rain, AAA advises:

  • Increase your following distance
  • Turn your headlights on (to see and be seen)
  • Turn your hazard lights off (unless your vehicle is disabled)
  • Avoid using cruise control (which can cause hydroplaning on wet roads)
  • Avoid flooded areas (you don't know how deep it is or what's underneath the surface)
  • If poor visibility, pull over to a safe place and wait until the rain eases up

Gas Prices

Gas prices are on the rise this week, jumping from $3.46 to $3.53 per gallon Tuesday morning. This price hike was set into motion last week, and not tied directly to the storm, since it's not projected to directly impact refinery activity in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi. Over the course of the past two weeks, the price of crude rose a total of 8%, due to Europe's ban on Russian oil, which goes into effect December 5th.

Click here to view daily average gas prices from AAA.

About AAA - The Auto Club Group

The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America with more than 13 million members across 14 U.S. states, the province of Quebec and two U.S. territories. ACG and its affiliates provide members with roadside assistance, insurance products, banking and financial services, travel offerings and more. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 62 million members in the United States and Canada. AAA's mission is to protect and advance freedom of mobility and improve traffic safety. For more information, get the AAA Mobile app, visit AAA.com, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.