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Insurers Support Customers Affected By Severe Weather

Insurers are supporting their customers following the severe weather that continues to track over the North Island, resulting in flooding and landslips in Napier overnight (Monday 9 November).

The Insurance Council of New Zealand (ICNZ) and The Earthquake Commission (EQC) encourage anyone affected to contact their insurer.

"Your insurer is there to support you and help you get back on your feet after an event such as this - so make sure you contact either your insurer or broker as soon as you can so arrangements can be made to assess the damage or losses and progress any claims," says Tim Grafton, Chief Executive ICNZ.

Due to the relatively contained nature of the damage in Napier, insurers will notify EQC to support any claims related solely to land damage such as slips or resulting silt or debris from either land slips or floodwaters.

Metservice has forecasted the weather to continue to adversely affect the Central and North-eastern areas of New Zealand over the next 24 hours (through Wednesday 11 November). ICNZ says there are some simple things you can do that don’t cost anything and will help make sure you and your property stay safe, including:

- move your car out of flood danger, and avoid driving if you can, especially through flood waters (keep an eye on NZTA updates for local roads)

- secure large items such as umbrellas and outdoor furniture, turn trampolines upside down, and pack away smaller items that may become airborne

- move valuables and electrical items to higher ground

- check gutters and drains are clear of debris

- stock your emergency kit, be prepared for power outages

- check on neighbours and friends.

If you do suffer flood damage, ICNZ says there are also some steps to take that can help speed up recovery:

- Do not do anything that puts your safety at risk or causes more damage to your property.

- Take photos of any damage and note details of valuable items, and don’t dispose of anything until you’ve spoken to your insurer. It will help speed up assessments of your claims.

- Don’t enter flood water, and don’t operate cars or electrical appliances that may have been flooded.

- Get essential services repaired and keep copies of invoices.

- Make your home safe and sanitary but don’t do non-essential repairs.

- Always wear protective gear, including gloves and masks, in case you’re exposed to hazardous material.

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