These events have been described as the most challenging in FMG's 118-year history, surpassing the volume of claims from the Kaikōura and Canterbury earthquakes.
Jacqui McIntosh, FMG's recovery manager, attributed the swift response to the company's rural expertise and lessons learned from past events. She emphasised the urgency of FMG’s response, especially given the widespread impact on the East Coast. The company's strategy involved reallocating resources to enhance customer service capabilities.
The extent of the claims included a wide range of damages: from homes and businesses affected, vehicles damaged by floods, to significant agricultural losses like destroyed crops, livestock, and farm infrastructure.
“Our people know their businesses, their families, their pets, and properties. It becomes very personal,” McIntosh said. “I have watched our people going the extra mile, time and time again. Many have been here before. They were here for the Canterbury Earthquakes and again in Kaikōura. And they will be here for the next claim – be it big or small.”
McIntosh also reflected on the dedication of FMG's staff, many of whom have previously navigated major events such as the Canterbury and Kaikōura earthquakes. This experience, she said, has been invaluable in managing the current situation.
While acknowledging the progress made, McIntosh recognised that there is still work to be done, with some clients facing ongoing uncertainty regarding the future of their properties. She stressed the importance of understanding the full extent of the damage and the associated risks before making decisions on repairs or replacements.
“We still have clients facing uncertainty around the future of their homes and businesses. It is important that time is taken to make sure we all understand the future risks to people and property. What I can provide assurance on, is that we are here for the long haul. FMG is part of the very fabric of rural New Zealand. We have been here for 118 years, and we will be here for 118 more,” she said.
In other news for the rural insurer, FMG also reacted to Toka Tū Ake EQC confirming the increase in EQCover building cap, which is now applied to all insured homes in New Zealand.
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