RACQ urges Queenslanders to prepare for storm season

Queenslanders were concerned about severe weather events' unpredictability in the state, research found

RACQ urges Queenslanders to prepare for storm season

Catastrophe & Flood

By Roxanne Libatique

The Royal Automobile Club of Queensland (RACQ) has urged residents to brace for the storm season.

RACQ issued the warning after finding that 49% of Queenslanders said they were concerned about the unpredictability of severe weather events in the state. However, 31% of Queenslanders have not yet checked their roof's condition, while one in four have not trimmed overhanging trees or cleaned their gutters.

RACQ chief executive insurance Trent Sayers said the weather is expected to be dryer than usual this summer, but there is still risk of thunderstorms and flooding.

“Severe thunderstorms are common in the warmer months, and often, you don't have time to prepare your home before they hit,” he said. “Our research found that 44% of Queenslanders are concerned about damage to their home during storm season, and 38% are worried about damage to their car. It was revealed that the most common behaviours undertaken when preparing for storms were moving vehicles to a safe area or securing outdoor furniture.

“While these are important measures, it's tasks like cleaning your gutters and checking your roof for loose sheets, cracked tiles, deteriorated seals, or rust that have the biggest impact on protecting your home from severe weather.”

Home and motor claims

Over the past year, RACQ received 9,287 home and motor claims related to flood, hail, and storm damage. It identified Queensland as the most vulnerable state when it comes to severe weather events.

“According to our insurance claims data, the Wide Bay, Central Queensland, and South West Queensland regions had the highest frequency of claims related to severe weather in the past 12 months,” Sayers said. “Despite it being a relatively subdued storm year, last year, nearly a third of total home insurance claims were for storm, hail, or flood.”

RACQ also found that 39% of Queenslanders have not yet reviewed their sum insured value within their home insurance policy in the past 12 months.

“Concerningly, more than one in four said their home was either not insured, they didn't know their sum-insured value, or didn't think their insurance would cover rebuilding costs in today's market,” Sayers said. “It's important to understand what you're covered for in your insurance policy. RACQ Home Insurance includes flood, storm, and hail as standard, but other insurers may be different. If you're in the unfortunate situation of being affected by a severe weather event, you can lodge your claim online; the earlier we receive it, the sooner we can assist.”

RACQ has been calling on the Queensland government to focus on climate and natural disaster resilience to improve the region.

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