Claims rise in storm’s messy wake

Nelson Mail - - NEWS - TIM O'CON­NELL

Two weeks af­ter flood­wa­ters sub­sided, claim num­bers from the Fe­bru­ary 1 storm are still flow­ing in.

The Earth­quake Com­mis­sion has so far re­ceived 60 claims for dam­age caused by the rem­nants of Cy­clone Fehi ear­lier this month, with 53 of them from the South Is­land and the re­main­ing seven from the North Is­land.

In the Nel­son re­gion, a tri­fecta of a very low pres­sure sys­tem, king high tides and high winds flooded homes in the re­gion, while huge waves crashed across roads, and high winds brought down trees.

Most af­fected were res­i­dents in Ma­pua and Ruby Bay, west of Nel­son city, as well as those on the Monaco penin­sula.

Within the first week, 14 claims re­lat­ing to storm dam­age had been made, with eight of those com­ing from the Nel­son-Tas­man area.

By Fe­bru­ary 12, that to­tal had climbed to 38 claims re­ceived for the com­bined area as well as six claims for the West Coast re­gion.

EQC an­tic­i­pated the num­ber to in­crease as peo­ple took stock.

Chief Cus­tomer Of­fi­cer Tr­ish Keith says there was still time for peo­ple to make a claim and any­one whose prop­erty has suf­fered dam­age should do so.

Keith said that al­though some cus­tomers may not have all the in­for­ma­tion as to the dam­age to their prop­erty, they should still lodge a claim and EQC will work with them through the process.

‘‘Many peo­ple whose prop­erty has been dam­aged may not have lodged an EQC claim be­fore and there­fore may be un­aware of the process for do­ing so, and what they could be en­ti­tled to re­ceive.’’

An EQC claim can be lodged within three months of the dam­age oc­cur­ring, with the pri­or­ity af­ter any event be­ing for lo­cal res­i­dents to look af­ter them­selves, their fam­i­lies, and friends and take stock of what’s hap­pened to their prop­er­ties.

To make a claim with EQC for nat­u­ral dis­as­ter dam­age, prop­erty own­ers must have a home or con­tents in­surance pol­icy that in­cludes fire cover with a pri­vate in­surance com­pany when the nat­u­ral dis­as­ter dam­age oc­curred.

Fol­low­ing in­for­ma­tion ses­sions in West­port, Hok­i­tika and Franz Josef last week, a Tas­man com­mu­nity in­for­ma­tion ses­sion was be­ing or­gan­ised by the Tas­man Dis­trict Coun­cil.

It was to be held at the Ma­pua Com­mu­nity Cen­tre at 6pm on Tues­day.

EQC cov­ers storm or flood dam­age to the land around a home. Pri­vate in­sur­ers cover storm or flood dam­age to the home and con­tents. EQC also cov­ers land­slip dam­age to the home, land or con­tents.

Claims can be lodged on­line at www.eqc.govt.nz/claims, via email on info@eqc.govt.nz, or by calling 0800 DAM­AGE (0800 326 243). The EQC call cen­tre is open 7am to 9pm Mon­day to Fri­day, and 8am to 6pm on Satur­days. More in­for­ma­tion atwww.eqc.govt.nz/ get-help-now-claims.

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