Industry body monitors bushfire damage

Industry body monitors bushfire damage | Insurance Business

Industry body monitors bushfire damage

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) and its members are monitoring the impact of the bushfires that continue to burn across New South Wales. 

By Monday morning, the NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) downgraded five emergency warnings to watch and act status after a day of extreme heat and more than 100 fires around the state, but warns that the danger is far from over, ABC reported. 

With over 80 blazes across the state yet to be contained, the blazes rated watch and act were the ones at Kains Flat; Leadville, near Dunedoo; Beachwood, 50km west of Port Macquarie; Boggabri; and Dondingalong, the report said.

ICA said it is too early to determine the extent of insured losses caused by the bushfires. Early reports indicated, however, that the bushfires caused stock and other agricultural losses, as well as destroyed or damaged homes. 

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One town heavily impacted by the bushfires was Uarbry, east of Dunedoo. The bushfire on Sunday had “all but wiped out” the town, with nine of its 12 homes confirmed to be destroyed and its surrounding farmlands extensively damaged, The Guardian reported.

An ICA representative went to the state's Central West to lend assistance to policyholders, and liaise with emergency services and local and state government agencies.

“Insurers are standing by to handle inquiries and claims. Policyholders are urged to contact their insurer or insurance broker if they intend to lodge a claim,” said ICA CEO Rob Whelan. 

“Primary producers who need to euthanise injured livestock can do so, but they should first advise their insurer and make sure they keep records for the purposes of making a claim.” 

Property owners and residents were also urged by ICA to stay safe and return to their properties only when emergency services advise them it is safe to do so.

Affected residents can contact ICA through its disaster hotline 1800 734 621 for their claims issues and inquiries.

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