For Immediate Release:
May 11, 2022
Mulready Says Get Ready Part III:
After the Storm
By Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready
Recovering from a disaster can be challenging and stressful. Most natural disasters happen unexpectedly and can significantly impact your mental and physical health. Fortunately, the state of Oklahoma has excellent disaster assistance resources. Knowing how to access them makes the recovery process faster and less stressful. This Mulready Says Get Ready Part III: After the Storm offers some general advice on steps to take after disaster strikes. Here are three important post-disaster steps to remember:
- Take care of yourself and your family.
- Your first concern after a disaster is your family’s health and safety. Check for injuries and seek medical help for any injured family members.
- If the storm destroyed your home, business or personal property, know that cleaning up and repairing the damage can be physically, mentally and financially challenging.
- Let your local officials know of any damages you may have and what immediate assistance you may need such as food and shelter. You can report flooding and storm damages at damage.ok.gov.
- For non-emergency disaster or health and human service information, please contact your local 2-1-1. Services are available 24 hours a day.
- Contact your insurance agent as soon as possible.
- Document all your damages before you clean up. Take photos or videos and make a list. Check out our free Home Inventory Checklist if you haven’t created a home inventory.
- Save all your receipts for post-damage repair and clean-up.
- Contact your insurance agent to start the claims process as soon as possible.
- Work with your adjuster and complete proof of loss to support your claim.
- Be aware of post-disaster fraud and scams.
- DO NOT give any personal information such as Social Security or bank account numbers unless you are sure it is safe. Local officials, state and federal workers like FEMA inspectors never need this information to provide services.
- Watch out for people going door-to-door or calling homeowners claiming to be building contractors. These could be scam artists, especially if they ask for financial information.
- Report suspicious activity to local authorities and the FEMA Disaster Fraud Hotline at 1-866-720-5721. You can also contact the Oklahoma Insurance Department’s Anti-Fraud Unit at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-800-522-0071.
To help Oklahomans prepare for this storm season, I’ve released the three-part column series—Mulready Says Get Ready: Before, During and After the Storm. This comprehensive series will provide general preparedness tips for before, during and after disasters. Visit www.oid.ok.gov/news to check out Part I: Before the Storm and Part II: During the Storm columns. Also, be sure to listen to our Mulready Minutes Podcast Episode 10: the Preparedness Movement Part I & 2 at www.oid.ok.gov/podcast to learn how to Get Ready for severe weather. For more disaster preparedness resources: www.oid.ok.gov/getready.
If you have questions about other insurance issues, please contact the Oklahoma Insurance Department at 1-800-522-0071 or visit our website at www.oid.ok.gov.
Questions or comments should be directed to
Communications Director, Liz Heigle
Liz.Heigle@oid.ok.gov | (405) 819-2221