HIGH NUMBER OF INSURANCE CLAIMS EXPECTED FOLLOWING HAIL AND SEVERE STORMS
SHORTTERM insurers expect to be inundated with claims following storms and hail in Gauteng and Mpumulanga this week, and the storm in Durban yesterday.
Social media footage in Durban yesterday of vehicles partially submerged under water and houses and businesses being flooded, indicate that the number of insur ance claims is likely to be high.
“We are currently processing a significant number of claims following the damaging hail storms in Mpumalanga and KwaZuluNatal in the past week and we are gathering all the necessary information following the large hail storm in Gauteng [on Monday] as well as the severe storm in Durban,” Santam head of claims and group sourcing Abrahim Asmal said yester day. He said the firm was now focusing on ensuring clients and brokers receive the necessary assistance with their claims.
“Santam’s 24/7 claims and emergency helpline is inundated with calls at the moment. The severity and geographical spread of these events has placed some pressure on our claims team and we are prioritising emergencies,” said Asmal.
In the six months to endJune, Santam, according to reports, settled claims worth R8,8 billion after dealing with R800 million of claims from severe storms in Cape Town, and the devastating fire in Knysna.
Old Mutual Insure media specialist Tshepo Mashego said they had plans in place to deal with increased number of claims that were likely to be made due to damaged from the storms. Another shortterm insurance firm, Auto & General, extended its working hours from 7 am to 7 pm to assist claimants who have been affected.
Santam said extreme weather events like hail storms were increasing in intensity and occurrence, as predicted by climate change science and the rising urbanisation patterns of South Africa.
“We are therefore a strong advocate of the need to build local level resilience and risk protection,” said Asmal.