7.0 Earthquake in Southern Alaska Caused Extensive Damage

November 30, 2018 (Vancouver) – Earlier today a magnitude 7.0 earthquake occurred south of Anchorage, Alaska, causing extensive damage and a brief tsunami warning. This event should serve as an important reminder that Canada's west coast faces a significant earthquake risk, and it is important that everyone living in this area be prepared.

"Experts estimate that there is a 30% chance of a significant earthquake striking southwestern British Columbia in the next 50 years and a 10 to15% chance of one striking Quebec," said Aaron Sutherland, Vice-President, Pacific, Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC). "Today's event is an important reminder that we live in an active earthquake zone and we need to be prepared."

Standard home insurance policies do not cover earthquake damage. However, earthquake coverage is available as an add-on to those policies. It's imperative that British Columbians have a conversation with their insurance representative to ensure they have a policy that meets their needs.

"All British Columbians have a role to play in creating a culture of earthquake preparedness across this province," added Sutherland. "Understanding the risks will ensure British Columbians are safer and better prepared when disaster strikes."

A 2013 study by AIR Worldwide, commissioned by IBC, estimated the overall costs after a magnitude 9.0 earthquake in British Columbia at almost $75 billion. A magnitude 7.1 earthquake in the Ottawa-Montreal-Quebec City corridor would cost nearly $61 billion.

Preparing Canada for an earthquake is a priority for Canada's property and casualty insurance industry. But we cannot do it alone. The private sector, governments, communities and all Canadians must work together to make sure we are prepared for an earthquake.

About Insurance Bureau of Canada

Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is the national industry association representing Canada's private home, auto and business insurers. Its member companies make up 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. For more than 50 years, IBC has worked with governments across the country to help make affordable home, auto and business insurance available for all Canadians. IBC supports the vision of consumers and governments trusting, valuing and supporting the private P&C insurance industry. It champions key issues and helps educate consumers on how best to protect their homes, cars, businesses and properties.

P&C insurance touches the lives of nearly every Canadian and plays a critical role in keeping businesses safe and the Canadian economy strong. It employs more than 126,000 Canadians, pays $9 billion in taxes and has a total premium base of $54.7 billion.

For media releases and more information, visit IBC's Media Centre at www.ibc.ca. Follow us on Twitter @InsuranceBureau or like us on Facebook. If you have a question about home, auto or business insurance, contact IBC's Consumer Information Centre at 1-844-2ask-IBC.