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A man works on a damaged house in Crowhill Street, Glasgow, after fierce storms battered Britain yesterday. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday January 4, 2012. See PA story WEATHER Storms. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire
Adam Aiken, Editor
Thursday, January 5, 2012
The insurance industry has been inundated with claims from people affected by the storms pounding the UK.
One insurer, the Co-op, said it received more claims on Tuesday than it would normally expect to receive during the whole of January, and the continuing bad weather is likely to have seen further claims over the past couple of days.
“Most of the claims we are seeing relate to damage to the home, with roof, shed and fence damage being most common,” said Lee Mooney, head of home insurance at the Co-op.
“We urge customers to make sure their homes are protected as far as possible from further damage. Simple steps include clearing your garden of hazardous loose objects and removing loose or overhanging branches.”
Aviva said its network of contractors, claims teams and call centre staff were on standby to help those affected by the storms.
“We are working hard to get our customers’ properties repaired as quickly as possible during these difficult times,” said Carole Gallagher, head of property claims at Aviva.
“Like floods, tornadoes, earthquakes and freeze, storms and gales are covered as standard by your home insurance policy. And storm damage to your car is also covered under your motor policy.
“There is no such thing as an ‘act of God’ exclusion – this is exactly what your insurance covers you for. So any damage caused to your property as a direct result of storm force wind and rain is covered, and if you are forced to move out of your home, the cost of alternative accommodation is also paid for.”
Stuart Curson, head of Direct Line home insurance, said: “Nearly half of all weather-related claims are due to roof damage. However, personal safety is paramount and if it is not safe to do so, do not attempt even temporary repairs.
“Damage to gates, garage and shed doors are also common claims. Keep these closed and locked when not in use. This will not only prevent the wind blowing them off the hinges – it is good practice to keep your property secure to avoid opportunist burglaries.”
If your home is damaged in a storm, call your insurer as soon as you can. If possible, take photographs of the damage as these might help with the settlement of any claims.