Farmers insurance agents and insurance agents in the rural states of Georgia, South Carolina and Missouri can all expect to be hit with a winter storm of record-breaking severity, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
The agency issued a warning late Friday to farm owners and operators in Georgia, Mississippi and South Carolina as the storm’s wind gusts reach 60 mph (100 kph).
It said in a statement that the storm is expected to dump up to 1 foot (30 cm) of snow in the lower 48 states and more than a foot (18 cm) in the upper 48.
Insurers in the regions of Georgia and South Dakota have been warning for weeks about the potential for such an event, according the Insurance Information Institute, which tracks farm-related injuries and fatalities.
“Farmers in these states should take steps to protect themselves and their livestock from the potential impacts of this winter storm,” the IHI said.
This year’s snowpack is just one factor affecting the risk for farm workers and their families, it added.
Farmers Insurance and Farm-to-Home Insurers in Georgia and the Lower 48 have been issuing a warning for farm-to, farm-run vehicles for several weeks, but it was not clear when the warning would be extended.
In Georgia, farmers in Cobb County and around the metro area are warned to expect a snowstorm this weekend, and the storm could reach 20 to 30 inches (50 to 70 cm) on the ground by Sunday.
If you live in a region affected by the winter storm, your insurance company might offer you a free quote to protect you from the possibility of injury or death, according a statement from the agency.
But farm workers are especially vulnerable to the storm because they typically spend a great deal of time outdoors, and are more likely to suffer from the cold, the IRI said.
Farmers, who rely on farming for their livelihood, have been advised to keep doors and windows closed and to not allow pets or children to enter their property.
Farmed-related vehicle collisions are expected to soar in Georgia as the weather approaches, according that the IHH said.