In recent years, insurance companies have dropped clients or refused to insure for fire in our area. Many were blindly following the Insurance Services Office (ISO) Public Protection Classification and not taking the time to come up and evaluate each property and our community fire safety program. Since PML is a rural, woodland area, we are given a higher risk rating. Unfortunately some insurance companies choose to ignore our efforts to create and maintain a fire-safe community. They are not willing to write coverage regardless of what we do. The threat from the Rim Fire only exacerbated the problem.
As a result, members have turned to local independent brokers and have had some success getting competitively-priced coverage. PMLA is not in the insurance business and cannot act as an intermediary between members and insurance companies, but we can certainly provide information.
To further assist our members, we have created a list of broker/agents who are currently writing coverage for fire in our area. Their contact information is listed below.
We recommend that affected members do the following:
Call the carriers who currently insure your autos and primary home policies. Long-term customers can usually get insurance agencies to reconsider coverage risk.
Call independent brokers located in the mountain communities in our area like Sonora. We have information that there are at least three who are writing policies.
Richard Eason Agency (in Merced, but servicing this area) (209) 383-7322
Roger L. Stevens Agency – Sonora (209) 591-8939
Cutler-Segerstrom Agency – Sonora (209) 532-6951
Kiefer Insurance Agency – Groveland (209) 962-6593
Obviously, we can make no personal recommendation or guarantee regarding these brokers or their ability to provide coverage, but the information we have from other members is that they are writing fire policies up here in PML. All three have done business in the area for many years. Interested members should contact these agencies directly and make their own determination as to who would best serve their insurance needs.
UPDATE Tuolumne County gets Involved