After the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicted a “near-normal” Atlantic hurricane season in May (with a note that uncertainty in climate signals was making storm predictions unusually difficult), the 2016 hurricane season ended up being the most active season since 2010. While two storms – Hurricanes Hermine and Matthew – wreaked the most havoc on the State of Florida and the Southeastern United States, 2016 saw a total of 15 named storms, including seven hurricanes with three rated at Category 3 or higher.
Hurricane Hermine Makes Record Landfall in Florida
In the early morning hours of September 2, Hurricane Hermine became the first hurricane to make landfall in Florida since 2005. After traversing the Atlantic and entering the Gulf of Mexico, Hurricane Hermine reached Florida’s Gulf Coast as a Category 1 storm and dumped more than 22 inches of rain in parts of the state within 72 hours. Some areas also saw record storm surges, and thousands of homeowners and businesses throughout Florida returned from mandatory evacuations to find their properties flooded and severely damaged by the storm’s 70-plus mph winds.
Hurricane Matthew Scrapes Florida After Reaching Category 5
Matthew became a named storm on September 28, reached hurricane strength on September 29 and reached Category 5 on September 30. After making landfall in Haiti and Cuba as a Category 4 storm, Hurricane Matthew moved north through the Bahamas before nearing Florida’s Atlantic coast on October 7.
While Hurricane Matthew would not make landfall again until reaching South Carolina the next day, the storm’s effects were felt throughout Florida’s First Coast and Space Coast regions. The storm surge peaked at nearly 10 feet above normal, causing widespread flooding and billions of dollars in economic loss. On February 8, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation announced that it was extending the deadline for National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policyholders in Florida to file proof of loss statements for their hurricane damage claims for an additional 60 days. This followed a previous 60-day extension that expired on January 31.
Are You Struggling with a Hurricane Damage Insurance Claim?
If your home or business was damaged during the 2016 hurricane season and you are still struggling to secure coverage from your insurance company, it may be time to consider legal representation. Insurance companies often fail to meet the high demands that follow major storms, and delays and unexpected claim denials will in many cases be symptomatic of bad-faith insurance practices. If your insurance company’s handling of your claim is showing signs of bad faith, you may need to hire an attorney who is experienced in insurance claim disputes in order to enforce the terms of your policy.
Speak with an Attorney about Your Hurricane Damage Insurance Claim
With offices in Fort Lauderdale, the attorneys at Saavedra | Goodwin provide experienced legal representation for residential and commercial insurance claim disputes throughout South Florida. If you would like to speak with an attorney about your claim, call (954) 767-6333 or contact us online today.