Three quarters of Cyclone Debbie claims completed

More than 75 per cent of the almost $1.5 billion Cyclone Debbie claims have been closed six months after the Category Four cyclone struck the Queensland coast near Airlie Beach.

Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) said insurers received 68,848 Debbie-related claims from households and businesses in Queensland and New South Wales.

ICA CEO Rob Whelan said insurers had worked diligently to help their customers and the closure rate was running 12 per cent ahead of similar disasters.

He added that more than 31,000 homes and businesses have been repaired or received settlements, 20,000 families have had their possessions replaced, and more than 4500 motor vehicles have been fixed or new vehicles provided.

However, he accepted that some customers have raised concerns about the pace of rebuilding and said that the industry is listening and is committed to resolving these matters as swiftly as possible.

“Insurers have contracted hundreds of local builders and trades to work on property repairs, and are injecting more than $5 million each working day into local communities,” Whelan said

He stressed that most of the remaining claims are large-scale building repairs, with often complex scopes of work which can take longer to finish. “The insurance industry continues to learn from its disaster recovery response, and seeks to improve its processes to provide the help its customers deserve.”