Clean-up bill for storms Dennis and Ciara 'set to cost insurers £360m'

Tom McArthur
Page editor
The Riverside Caravan Park Houses surrounded by flood water in in Bridgnorth, Shropshire, in the aftermath of Storm Dennis. (Photo by Jacob King/PA Images via Getty Images)

Cleaning up after storms Dennis and Ciara is set to top £360m ($469m), insurers have said.

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) said that initial estimates show the industry expects to make payments of £363 million to those customers who have been affected.

Some £214 million is going on flood claims and £149m is being used to repair windstorm damage.

The average household flood claim has been estimated at £32,000.

More than £7.7 million in total was spent on emergency payments to get home owners and businesses back on track in the immediate aftermath of the flooding and wind damage, including paying for temporary accommodation when homes were uninhabitable.

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Mark Shepherd, the ABI's assistant director, head of general insurance policy, said: "Insurers' first priority when bad weather strikes is always to help customers recover from the traumatic experience as quickly as possible.

"With some properties still under water, making emergency payments and arranging emergency alternative temporary accommodation or trading premises is very much a live issue.

A woman inspects damage to her property as residents begin clearing up following severe flooding beside the River Calder on February 10, 2020 in Mytholmroyd, West Yorkshire, England. (Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images)

"When the flood waters recede, the hard work begins. Insurers and loss adjusters will continue working around the clock to ensure homes and businesses are fully dried out, so that repairs can start as soon as possible, and people can get their lives back together."

The last time several storms of significance struck in quick succession was in December 2015, when storms Eva, Frank and Desmond caused insured damage valued at £1.3 billion, the ABI said.

It also put the cost of flooding in parts of south Yorkshire and the Midlands in November last year at over £110 million.

Read more: Storm Dennis — What to consider when making an insurance claim

Breaking the £214 million in flood claims down following storms Dennis and Ciara, there have been:

  • 3,350 domestic property flood claims, totalling an estimated £107m.

  • 1,500 commercial property flood claims put at £85m.

  • 3,600 motor claims amounting to £21.7m.

Within the £149 million bill for windstorm damage, there have been:

  • 61,000 domestic property claims, totalling £77m.

  • 9,000 commercial property claims, put at £61m.

  • 3,500 motor claims, with a bill of £11m.