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Can Citizens Insurance handle another Andrew?

 It’s been 20 years since Hurricane Andrew ripped the roof off of Dr. Albert Zbik’s South Miami-Dade home, and flung it into his pool.

Zbik recalled that his insurer at the time, State Farm, reacted “superbly” in the chaotic hours after the storm, handing him a $10,000 check for his family’s immediate living expenses.

Now, he’s covered by Citizens Property Insurance Corp., which has been raising rates and slashing coverage under the premise that it is one storm away from financial collapse.

“I don’t think Citizens would treat me as well” as State Farm, he said. “They’re cutting back on coverage. It’s an impending nightmare.”

Though history and science indicate hurricanes like Andrew hit Florida about once every 50 years, its 20th anniversary and the latest approaching tropical storm — Isaac — have many asking a crucial question: What would happen to the state’s largest insurer this year if another super-storm slammed Florida?


BONUS: Protest song by disgruntled Citizens' customer, Kevin Roth: "Cit-i-Sins"


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One day one of our cities is going to get whacked head on by a big blow, and then we're all going to pay ... and pay ... and pay.

But before that, as most of us have been doing, the rest of us will have already paid way too much to subsidize insurance for the rich folks' homes and condos on the beaches.

Can't Take Anymore

Too true, zup. With nearly 80% of Florida residents living within 10 miles of the coastline this day of reckoning is inevitable. The only rational action would be to deny permits to reconstruct homes on or near the ocean that get destroyed in hurricanes or tropical storms. Pay the owner for their loss but don't allow any new homes/condos/apartments/etc. to be constructed on a proven high risk site. Some would think this to be confiscatory but they would have to explain why the rest of us should continue to subsidize those who chose to build in these storm prone zones.

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