Insurance Aid General Brokers has begun the task today of proactively contacting clients in North Queensland today to gauge the impact of Tropical Cyclone Debbie.
However, the full extent of damage might not be known for days yet, as the remnants of the cyclone move south and contribute to storm tides and localised flooding.
The Category 4 cyclone yesterday battered Hamilton Island and the mainland around Airlie Beach, Bowen and Mackay with wind gust of up to 262 km and heavy rain.
Insurance Council of Australia has declared the event a catastrophe which means insurers are anticipating thousands of claims.
Insurance Aid General Brokers recommends clients contact our internal claims team as soon as possible to report claims so we can process them through your specific insurer and help coordinate repairs.
With the influx of claims, insurers are advising that there will be delays in processing claims and repairs. At IAGB we will do everything in our power to expedite this process for you.
The following will help us process your claims faster:
- For any urgent issues associated with your personal health and safety (i.e., evacuation, power lines, loss of power, roof damage) contact emergency services immediately
- When it’s safe to do so, contact our claims team on 07 3630 1823 to explain the extent of damage to your property
- Document the damage in email with photographs where possible to firstname.lastname@example.org
For clients bracing for the impact of heavy rain and localised flooding, we recommend checking the Bureau of Meteorology website http://www.bom.gov.au/ for updates and the Queensland Government Website for more information about storm surge. https://www.qld.gov.au/emergency/dealing-disasters/storm-surge.html
The Bureau of Meteorology has warned of a dangerous storm tide as the cyclone crossed the coast. It said its inland path is likely to lead to major river flooding over a broad area this week.
“Areas of heavy rain with the potential to cause severe flash flooding have developed around the Central Coast and Whitsundays district,” the bureau said. “These heavy rain areas are expected to spread further inland through central and south-eastern Queensland.”
The Queensland Government advice for residents bracing for flooding includes:
- Listen to your local radio station for warnings and advice. Don’t use your phone unless it is essential.
- Prepare to move vehicles, outdoor equipment, garbage, chemicals and poisons to higher locations.
- Decide which indoor items you will raise (e.g. furniture, clothing) or empty (refrigerators, freezers etc.) if your home may be flooded.
- Put sandbags in toilet bowls and over all laundry/bathroom drain-holes to prevent sewage back-flow.
- Turn off the power, water and gas to flooded areas
- Empty and turn off refrigerators and freezers, leaving the doors open to help prevent them floating about.
- Don’t drive into water of unknown depth and current.
Widespread daily rainfall totals of 150-250mm are expected with significantly higher totals possible.
Cyclone Yasi, which struck less populated areas of Queensland further north in February 2011 as a category five cyclone, caused insured losses of $1.4 billion.
ICA says that since 2006 insurers have paid more than $3.6 billion in cyclone-related claims in Queensland and more than $3.2 billion in flood claims.
* Image sources:
Bureau of Meteorology Wednesday, 29 March 2017 2.50am http://www.bom.gov.au/products/IDR231.loop.shtml