After the storm: Our catastrophe update

QBE and our broker partners have been working hard to support our customers following recent catastrophic weather that has hit opposite ends of the country. New South Wales and Queensland were hit by wild storms and floods in March, while parts of Western Australia have been devastated by the extreme weather brought by Cyclone Seroja.

The events have impacted thousands of homes, businesses and vehicles and we’ve been working closely with our broker partners on our response, says Jon Fox, QBE Australia’s Chief Claims Officer.

“We’re focused on helping our affected customers get back on their feet as quickly as possible and are working closely with our suppliers to help make this happen,” he says.

CAT 768: Storms update

In March, parts of NSW and south east QLD were lashed by a severe weather system. The latest figures from the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) indicate more than 40,000 storm and flood damage claims have been received for the destructive weather event across the industry. Based on previous weather events of this scale, the total estimated value of claims will total approximately $610 million.

Flooded road after heavy rainAs soon as it was safe, our teams were on the ground visiting customers to ensure claims were being handled as efficiently and effectively as possible.

The response has been aided by QBE’s new Digital Claims Lodgement process, says Fox.

“We’ve received some great feedback about our recently launched Digital Claims Lodgement process,” Fox says. “It has made lodging claims online faster and simpler for our partners and meant our trade panel and loss adjuster partners have been quickly assigned to jobs and are able to respond more efficiently in many cases.

“Additionally, our decision to have a state-based vs national builders panel has ensured there are no capacity issues with our builders and no overlap with the other catastrophe events in other states.

“We are now closely focused on continuing our customer response, including assessing any outstanding claims and replacing or repairing homes, property and vehicles as quickly as possible,” Fox added.

CAT 769: Cyclone Seroja update

Our teams have been on the ground in Western Australia meeting with brokers, customers and our suppliers following Tropical Cyclone Seroja, which brought winds of up to 170km per hour and heavy rain to affected areas.

Our teams are keeping a very close watch on the situation as some continued issues with power, mobile phone and internet services in the area have made claims lodgement and response efforts more challenging.

QBE claims information has been available at multiple recovery centres and customers are urged to stay safe and take pictures and records during any recovery, clearing and assessment efforts.

“Asbestos disposal is required in numerous cases, so our teams have also been working closely with customers and brokers to ensure their safety in these situations,” says Fox. “As recovery and clearing efforts commence it’s also important customers take photos and detailed records of any items that have been damaged or need to be disposed of.

“As with the March storms, QBE’s focus is helping our customers’ get their lives back on track as quickly as possible and working closely with our supply network to respond to customer needs,” Fox added.

Find out more about QBE’s Business Packages or contact your QBE Relationship Manager for more information.