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Wind insurance claims spike as Cyclone Ita hits North Island

Wind claims spike as Cyclone Ita hits North Island, says AA Insurance

Auckland, 17 April 2014 – Insurance claims for damage to homes and vehicles have spiked since Cyclone Ita touched down on our shores, says AA Insurance.

Simon Hobbs, AA Insurance Head of Product, says the most common types of damage have been wind related.

“We’ve had tree branches coming down on homes and cars, as well as fences and garden furniture being thrown around.”

"If you need emergency repairs in order to keep your home watertight and warm please ring us as soon as you can. While there’s no deadline to make a claim, the sooner you let us know, the sooner we can help you.”

In the meantime, those expecting the cyclone further down the country should make preparations for their home.

“Now’s a good time to check your property and secure anything that could cause damage to any part of your, or your neighbours’, property,” says Simon.

“During a storm we generally have a number of preventable claims related to trampolines and other outdoor equipment flying over to the neighbours’ and damaging their property, or creating havoc on our customers’ properties.”

“To avoid these types of incidents be sure to store away or secure items that may move during a storm, such as garden equipment, outdoor furniture and sports gear such as trampolines.”

AA Insurance advises its customers to:
• Secure or move your outdoor furniture inside
• Unplug appliances which may be affected by electrical power surges. If power is lost unplug major appliances
• Pull curtains and drapes over windows to prevent injury from shattered or flying glass
• Keep clear of broken windows or roofs that may have suffered damage
• If there is water in light fittings, turn your lights off and call an electrician
• Take care when cleaning up broken glass or securing roofing, but do not attempt to repair any damage until it is safe to do so
• If it is safe to do so, place a tarpaulin over any areas where the roof is leaking
• Remove any fallen debris from footpaths and walkways
• If floors are wet, lift furniture to prevent staining
• If possible, lift wet carpet to allow it to dry - don't use a heater, as this may shrink the carpet
• If your vehicle has been damaged or suffered flooding it may be unsafe to drive - please don’t drive unless you absolutely need to
• Keep your damaged items if you can or take photos – this is useful to confirm what needs replacing
• AA Insurance customers should call 0800 500 216, so we can assess the severity of the damage and arrange to have any damage to homes or vehicles repaired

About AA Insurance
AA Insurance Limited launched in 1994 and is a joint venture between the New Zealand Automobile Association and Vero New Zealand, which is part of the Suncorp Group. We employ around 580 staff to look after 320,000 customers and around 580,000 car, home and contents policies.

AA Insurance has been consistently recognised by Reader’s Digest Most Trusted Brands (since 2011), NZ Direct Insurer Award (since 2012), Kenexa Best Workplaces Survey (since 2008), and Canstar Blue Most Satisfied Customers (since 2011).

We proudly support youth charity Blue Light, and the Holden Cup and NRL Telstra Premiership referees in New Zealand.

AA Insurance has an A+ (Strong) Insurer Financial Strength Rating given by Standard and Poor’s (Australia) Pty Ltd. For further information visit www.aainsurance.co.nz.

ENDS

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