Fresh flooding causes misery for homeowners

Christina Hoghton
Written By:
Christina Hoghton

Claims data indicates Romford and Westminster are worst hit areas from this week’s flooding

Flash floods and lightning strikes have caused chaos on the commute and heartache for homeowners – and weather warnings are still in place.

Yesterday insurer Direct Line deployed its emergency response vehicles in London and Essex to help affected homeowners, saying that claims data showed Westminster and Romford were the worst hit areas.

Liam Farnell, head of Direct Line’s home field force, said: “We take the current severe weather and flooding extremely seriously, and have put our emergency action plans into place.

“Our emergency response vehicles are on the ground in London and Essex, helping affected customers. Our priority is reassuring householders with Direct Line home insurance policies and getting them back in their homes as quickly as possible.”

Lightning strikes

In addition to the rain, June has seen 10 times the normal number of lightning claims, said Direct Line. It said that one policyholder claimed after a single lightning bolt struck their home in Preston, damaging its electrical system causing £45,884 of damage.

A lightning strike can cause extensive, instantaneous damage, ‘frying’ circuits so the items have to be replaced. Electrical items affected not only include high tech items such as tablets or home control units, but also large appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers and cookers.

Direct Line advised householders affected by the flooding to contact their insurer as soon as possible, take photos of the damage to buildings and content, and resist throwing anything away before discussing it with your claims adviser.

The insurer also warned that you should not use electrical equipment or the gas supply until it has been checked by a qualified tradesperson.