East coast storms insurance losses multiply

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has released updated figures on the nearly 32,000 claims that resulted from the storms that pummelled Australia’s east coast this month.  The insured losses from Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, and Tasmania has more than tripled to $235 million.

ICA CEO Rob Whelan said in a statement that since the last ICA update, insurers have received very large claims for commercial and marine damage, which has substantially increased the overall losses from these storms.

Some of the damage to homes and properties in Queensland over the weekend was due to more than 100mm of rainfall and a ‘mini tornado’ which tore the roofs from properties on the Sunshine Coast.

“About three-quarters of all claims are domestic, and mainly relate to typical storm damage, although a small number of homes have been severely damaged and are temporarily uninhabitable.

“Under the ICA’s catastrophe declaration, insurers are pulling out all the stops to process claims, get assessors out to properties and start arranging repairs, with priority given to the most urgent cases.”

The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) had predicted further storms due to another potential low pressure system, but this severe weather warning for the northeast has been cancelled. Parts of New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania, at the time of writing, are still facing flood watch and wind warnings.