Bud­erim most hit by storms

Weather costs state $660m an­nu­ally

Sunshine Coast Daily - - NEWS - MATTY HOLDSWORTH Matty.Holdsworth@sc­news.com.au

NEW statis­tics have re­vealed Bud­erim is the third most af­fected sub­urb in the state for in­sur­ance claims when bat­tered by storms.

Re­search con­ducted by NRMA In­sur­ance shows that 12 per cent of all claims came from the Coast, just trail­ing south­east and north Bris­bane.

It is storm ac­tiv­ity like this that costs the state more than $660 mil­lion each year.

The new be­havioural re­search also shows a large por­tion of the state are not mak­ing their homes storm safe.

NRMA In­sur­ance ex­ec­u­tive gen­eral man­ager Ra­mana James said it was con­cern­ing that peo­ple were still un­der­es­ti­mat­ing the im­pact storms coud have.

“To­gether with the Queens­land SES, we’re urg­ing ev­ery­one, whether you live in an apart­ment in a city or a house in a re­gional area, to take the time now to pre­pare for storm sea­son,” Ms James said.

“While the ef­fects of the drought in some parts of

Queens­land have been well doc­u­mented, it’s im­por­tant peo­ple do not view the loom­ing storm sea­son as drought re­lief.

“Rain events and storm events are very dif­fer­ent. Storms fea­ture short, heavy bursts of rain that can cause flash flood­ing, as well as vi­o­lent winds and light­ning strikes that can leave a trail of de­struc­tion in their place.

“While se­vere weather can strike at any time, storm sea­son sees the like­li­hood of storms in­crease so lit­tle acts like trim­ming branches, clear­ing your gut­ters and se­cur­ing loose items in your gar­den or bal­cony can make a big dif­fer­ence when se­vere weather strikes.”

The NRMA In­sur­ance re­search also re­veals that while the clear ma­jor­ity (91 per cent) of Queens­lan­ders say they be­lieve they can quickly evac­u­ate their home in an emer­gency, only 42 per cent have an emer­gency plan.

Even less (36 per cent) have an emer­gency kit at home.

“Storm and cy­clone sea­son is an ex­tremely busy time for QFES, es­pe­cially our SES vol­un­teers who are called to as­sist com­mu­ni­ties across the state,” QFES as­sis­tant com­mis­sioner Peter Jef­frey said.

“Last year’s storm and cy­clone sea­son saw more than 5400 tasks com­pleted by our SES vol­un­teers, from trees down to struc­tural dam­age.

“Storms can hit any­where, with very lit­tle no­tice, and cause ex­ten­sive dam­age. Pre­par­ing is the only way to limit the im­pact of a storm be­fore it hits.

“Take time to clean up around your home, en­sur­ing gut­ters and drains are clear of de­bris, move or tie down any loose ob­jects in your yard, and en­sure you have cre­ated an emer­gency kit in­clud­ing im­por­tant items such as non-per­ish­able food, bot­tled wa­ter, a first aid kit, torch and bat­tery­pow­ered ra­dio.”

MAS­SIVE CLEAN-UP: Thurs­day's Gympie Car­a­van Park at Jane St.

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