Farmers(R) Group, Inc. and Subsidiaries Foremost and Bristol West Prepare for Tropical Storm Ida Heading for Florida Panhandle, Offer Tips to Customers to be Prepared

Tropical Storm Ida, bearing down on the Florida panhandle, will bring heavy rain and high winds from the coast inland. "The message we have for all of our customers is to be prepared and follow instructions if you are asked to evacuate," explains Foremost Catastrophe Manager Michael Steele. "We have deployed claims adjusters to the area and they are prepared to help our customers immediately after Ida hits land."


Farmers Insurance customers and Bristol West Insurance customers with damage should immediately contact their agent or call Farmers' 24-hour-claims hotline, 800-HelpPoint (1-800-435-7764) for immediate assistance.

Flood victims who have flood insurance should contact the National Flood Program at

Foremost Insurance customers should file their claim by calling: 800-527-3907.

"We ask our customers who are following Ida's projected path to pay close attention to the latest weather reports," Steele adds, "and begin making necessary preparations.

  --  Create a Home Inventory.  Have an up-to-date inventory of all of your
      personal property. Take pictures and then email them to relatives
      living out of state.  A home inventory will help you replace your
      belongings faster.
  --  Prepare an Evacuation Plan. Plan ahead and map out a safe and smooth
      evacuation route, and please follow any evacuation orders.  Things can
      be replaced; nothing is worth putting yourself or your family in
      harm's way.  Steele also recommends having all prescriptions and
      important paper work at the ready in case you have to leave your home
      on short notice.  It is also a good idea to have emergency supplies
      such as flashlights, radio, batteries and water on hand if you live in
      a hurricane prone area.

  --  Hurricane-Proof Your Home.  "We recommend installing storm shutters to
      protect your windows, or nailing plywood panels to your window frames
      when a storm approaches," said Steele.  "It is also a good idea to
      cover your sliding doors with plywood, and to replace old garage doors
      and tracks with a door that is approved for both wind pressure and
      impact protection.  If wind comes into your home through a large
      opening, it increases your chances of major damage to the rest of your
      home, especially your roof."

Farmers is a trade name and may refer to Farmers Group, Inc. or the Farmers Exchanges, as the case may be. Farmers Group, Inc., a management and holding company, along with its subsidiaries, is wholly owned by the Zurich Financial Services Group. The Farmers Exchanges are three reciprocal insurers (Farmers Insurance Exchange, Fire Insurance Exchange and Truck Insurance Exchange), including their subsidiaries and affiliates, owned by their policyholders, and managed by Farmers Group, Inc. and its subsidiaries. For more information about Farmers, visit our Web site at

  Contact:    Jerry Davies

First Call Analyst:
FCMN Contact:

PRN Photo Desk,

SOURCE: Farmers Group, Inc.



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