Northeast Oklahoma storm damage exceeds $18 million

Friday, May 26th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Early May's deluge in northeast Oklahoma caused more than $18 million in damage, much of it is not covered by standard homeowners insurance, the state's insurance commissioner said Thursday.

Eight companies representing 75 percent of Oklahoma's insurance market reported claims totaling $18,147,000, Carroll Fisher said.

They reported receiving 8,376 claims for water, hail and other storm damage to homes and automobiles between May 5 and May 9.

High water caused much damage not covered by typical homeowners policies, Fisher said.

"Flood insurance usually provides less coverage than comparable homeowners insurance, but it is the only insurance available for flood losses," Fisher said.

Flood insurance is provided by the federal government through the National Flood Insurance Program, he said.

On Wednesday, President Clinton rejected Oklahoma's request for federal disaster assistance for those affected by flooding this month in Creek, Tulsa and Wagoner counties.

State emergency officials said 319 buildings were damaged in the flooding. Eight buildings, all of them in Creek County, were destroyed.

Gov. Frank Keating has requested that the U.S. Small Business Administration declare Creek County a disaster area. The declaration would allow eligible home and business owners in Creek and contiguous counties to apply for low-interest loans to cover the cost of flood repairs.