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Australia’s Tathra and Victoria bushfire losses reach $45mn as clean-up begins

23rd April 2018 - Author: Matt Sheehan

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has reported that re/insured losses from the Tathra and Victoria bushfires, which struck south-eastern Australia over the 17th and 18th of March 2018, have reached AUD $45 million (USD $35 million), with 1050 claims lodged as the clean-up begins.

Insurance Council of Australia65 homes were destroyed by the fire in Tathra, New South Wales, which is believed to have been started by an electrical infrastructure failure.

Meanwhile, fires in south-western Victoria burned through 14,000 hectares and destroyed 18 homes, with blazes likely sparked by lightning strikes.

Re/insurers have already made considerable progress with the clean-up of homes damaged or destroyed in Tathra, with 20 properties reportedly cleared so far.

“Contractors engaged by insurers have made rapid progress,” said Rob Whelan, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the ICA.

He continued: “Insurers are acting in the best interests of their customers. They are pressing ahead with clearing insured properties destroyed by the bushfire. Repairs have started on some damaged homes in the area too.”

The ICA has organised a forum for insured householders and businesses in Tathra to discuss the claims process, underinsurance, and site clearance with members of the ICA disaster recovery team, insurance company representatives and Legal Aid solicitors.

Whelan explained: “This forum will guide property owners through the claims and clean-up process and give them the opportunity to talk to representatives from the Insurance Council or their insurer.

“The goal of the forum is to reduce the chance of misinformation and misunderstandings, and provide clear, concise guidance that helps reduce stress and worry.”

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