ABI: Insurers will be quick to help those hit by bad weather says ABI

Insurers will be acting as quickly as possible to help customers hit by the current spell of bad weather, says the ABI (Association of British Insurers). Anyone who has suffered damage following the recent heavy rain or further snowfalls should contact their insurers as soon as possible.

Nick Starling, the ABI’s Director of General insurance and Health, said:

“Events like this are exactly why people take out insurance. Insurers plan for bad weather, and will have arrangements in place to minimise distress and inconvenience and help people recover as quickly as possible. Some, for example, may be identifying and contacting their policyholders in areas affected to see if they need to claim.”

People who have suffered damage to their property or contents should:

– Contact their home insurer as soon as possible. Most will have 24-hour emergency helplines, which can give advice on next steps and arrange repairs as quickly as possible.
– If necessary, arrange temporary emergency repairs to stop any damage getting worse. Tell your insurer and keep any receipts, as this will form part of your claim.
– Don’t be in a rush to throw away damaged items, unless they are a danger to health, as these may be able to be repaired or restored. Your insurer will advise.

If flooding is expected:

– Move whatever is possible and safe to do so to any upper floors.
– Make sure that you have emergency contact numbers for your insurer, local authority and utility companies to hand in a safe waterproof place.
– Listen out for flood warnings on local radio and TV.

Household buildings and contents policies will cover flood and storm damage. If your home is uninhabitable, your insurer will usually pay for temporary accommodation while it is being repaired.

Motor insurance covers damage to vehicles under comprehensive policies. Again, contact your insurer as soon as possible to get your claim moving. Some policies may provide you with a replacement vehicle if the damage is repairable.

Travel insurance may cover you for delay or missed departure:

– If you are delayed for a specified time (such as eight hours or more, as set out in the policy) the policy may pay a set amount.
– Missed departure due to failure of public transport, or if your vehicle breaks down, or is involved in an accident due to adverse weather.

Business insurance policies will cover storm damage to premises and stock. Business interruption cover (which may be included or purchased separately) will cover additional costs, such as hiring temporary premises, if needed.

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Notes for Editors

1. Enquiries to:
Jonathan French 020 7216 7392 (Mobile: 07958 330 480)
Malcolm Tarling 020 7216 7410 (Mobile: 07776 147 667)
Erfan Hussain 020 7216 7411 (Mobile: 07712 841 184)
Kelly Ostler-Coyle 020 7216 7415 (Mobile: 07968 364 302)

2. The ABI is the voice of the insurance and investment industry. Its members constitute over 90 per cent of the insurance market in the UK and 20 per cent across the EU. They control assets equivalent to a quarter of the UK’s capital. They are the risk managers of the UK’s economy and society. Through the ABI their voice is heard in Government and in public debate on insurance, savings and investment matters.

3. An ISDN line is available for broadcasts.

Copies of all ABI news releases, together with other information from the Association, can be seen on our website http://www.abi.org.uk