With The Met Office warning of storm force winds expected to batter much of the UK this Friday, the Association of British Insurers advises property owners to:
- Check that your property is in a good state of repair, such as repairing loose roof tiles or damaged guttering.
- Make sure you have emergency contact numbers for your insurer, local authority and utility companies to hand.
- Listen out for bad weather warnings on local radio and TV and check The Met Office website.
- Make sure any unsecured items, like ladders in gardens that can cause damage in high winds are secured or brought inside.
- Where practical, businesses should ensure that machinery and stock in outside areas is secure.
- Try and avoid leaving your car parked under trees if at all possible.
If high winds damage your property:
- Contact your property insurer as soon as possible. They will have 24-hour emergency helplines, which can give advice on next steps and arrange repairs as quickly as possible.
- If necessary, arrange temporary emergency repairs to stop any damage getting worse. Tell your insurer and keep any receipts, as this will form part of your claim.
- Do not do anything that puts you or your household at risk.
What is covered?
- Household buildings and contents policies cover damage, including that caused by storm winds and floods. If your home is uninhabitable, your insurer will pay for temporary accommodation while it is being repaired.
- Motor insurance covers damage to vehicles under comprehensive policies.
- Business insurance policies will cover storm damage to premises and stock. damage
- Business interruption cover (which may be included or purchased separately) will help with any loss of income for periods when you cannot do businesses as normal.
- If your travel plans have been affected by bad weather, check your travel policy and contact your travel agent, tour operator or transport provider. See our advice on flight cancellations and travel delays.
Mark Shepherd, ABI’s Assistant Director, Head of Property, said:
"Windstorms can be very destructive, disruptive and distressing, but this type of natural hazard is exactly what insurance is designed to protect against. Storm damage is covered as standard in home and business insurance policies, so if anyone suffers damage to their property they should contact their insurer to get their claim moving.”