Fire victim’s prioritised

For Yeppoon fire victims like custard apple farmer Bruce Sloper who lost farm machinery and expensive pumps when his shed went up in flames, the insurance claims begin.

As of 2pm yesterday, insurers had received 450 bushfire-related claims across Queensland and New South Wales. Insured losses are already estimated at $50 million nationwide -but the fires continue.

Many more claims are expected to be lodged in coming days and weeks.

Insurance claims from bushfire-affected householders and small businesses in Yeppoon and on the Sunshine Coast will be escalated and prioritised following the extension of the current ‘catastrophe declaration’.

The declaration now covers customers who suffered bushfire-related losses.

The decision followed confirmation of property losses and consultation between the Insurance Council of Australia, the Queensland Government, the Queensland Fire and Emergency Service, and local insurers.

ICA’s Campbell Fuller said the fires caused a massive increase in insurance claims, urging those affected to contact their insurers as soon as possible to start the process.

“Insurance assessors are starting to visit a limited number of areas that have been declared,” Mr Fuller said.

“Once insurers are aware of a claim, they can swiftly provide appropriate help to the customer, which in many cases may include authorising urgent repairs or arranging emergency accommodation.”

Claims from these bushfires will be prioritised by all insurers as dictated by the Catastrophe Declaration’ which is intended to reduce the emotional, physical and financial stress experienced by affected families.

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