TWO storms which hit the UK hard have cost the insurance industry £363 million with the average household claiming £32,000.
The eye-watering figures have just been released by the Association of British Insurers (ABI) and shows the devastation that floods bring to both homes and businesses.
The claims have come in the wake of storms Ciara and Dennis and underlines the fact that flooding is known as “the thief who takes everything” with flooding claims typically 37 times greater than the cost of an average burglary.
A total of 82,000 claims have been received for flood and wind damage. Of these, 64,300 were for damaged homes and possessions, 10,600 for businesses and stock with 7,100 relating to damaged vehicles.
Breaking the figures down further, there were 3,350 domestic property flood claims totalling an estimated £107million with the average cost of repairing a flood damaged home around £32,000.
There were also 1,500 commercial property flood claims totalling £85 million and 3,600 motor claims amounting to £21.7 million.
The last time several storms of significance struck in quick succession was in December 2015 when Storms, Eva, Frank and Desmond caused insured damaged valued at £1.3 billion.
Insurance claims can be completely avoided if more homes and businesses were protected from flooding but people don’t realise that councils have no responsibility to provide sandbags. FloodSax alternative sandbags are space-saving to store, quick and easy to deploy and means you have peace of mind and are ready for action 24/7 to prevent a flood.
Once FloodSax come into contact with water they inflate to weigh 20kg (44lbs) which makes them more effective than traditional sandbags at keeping floodwater out.
Mark Shepherd, ABI’s Assistant Director, Head of General Insurance Policy, said: “Insurers’ first priority when bad weather strikes is always to help customers recover from the traumatic experience as quickly as possible. With some properties still under water, making emergency payments and arranging emergency alternative temporary accommodation or trading premises is very much a live issue.
“When the flood waters recede, the hard work begins. Insurers and loss adjusters will continue working around the clock to ensure homes and businesses are fully dried out, so that repairs can start as soon as possible, and people can get their lives back together.”