Cunningham Lindsey respond to Australian floods

5 Jan 11

As has been widely reported in the media, flooding has now affected an area the size of France and Germany combined, in Queensland, Australia.

Our branch offices in Rockhampton and Bundaberg are undamaged and are operational at this time. We have also despatched adjusters from other branches in 4WD's with camp bedding to attend to some of the more remote townships that we are able to access. We have a further 14 adjusters standing by to attend the main towns over the weekend, with more than 100 more adjusters preparing to attend should they be required over the coming weeks.

We have established our CAT Management Team in Brisbane pending potential re-location to central Queensland once the full extent of the damage is understood.

Situation Summary

  • Enormous volumes of rain have fallen in Queensland resulting in 15 river systems rising above normal levels across the state.
  • Towns such as Theodore and Emerald have been almost completely submerged by water, whilst other towns have been isolated such as Rockhampton where the river is still rising.
  • Full disaster recovery plans have been implemented by the state and local governments in more than 20 locations ranging as far south as St George in south west QLD.

Dangers
As a consequence of so much water, there are a number of dangers including:

  • Lack of sanitation
  • Health risks from dirty conditions and mosquito infestation
  • Movement of wildlife, particularly snakes seeking shelter in buildings
  • Road access and damaged infrastructure

Priorities

  • The immediate priority continues to be the safety of people who may require assistance due to severely damaged dwellings.
  • We have also found that whilst power has been cut, it can take some days for power to be restored. 
  • Temporary accommodation is in very short supply, and alternative solutions may be necessary depending upon the particular circumstances involved. 
  • Our Customer Service Centre (CSC) are making every attempt to contact customers, understand their circumstances, provide support and guidance and learn when they will be ready to start working with us on the assessment of their insurance claim. Our objective is same day contact for every customer once their claim is received - the claim is then registered and allocated to our assessing teams.

Current issues

  • Clean up process - Where flooding has occurred, the resulting damage will be quite severe. The water would have been contaminated and silt will have penetrated all through the properties. This requires significant steps just to clean, before then sanitising for safety.
  • Mould - Central Queensland is currently characterised by continuing rain and extreme humidity. As a result ‘mould' will quickly become a significant issue.
    Asbestos - There may be many timber framed and fibro-clad buildings. Based on their likely age we expect the fibro contains asbestos. This presents an issue for the method and cost of debris removal.
  • Temporary accommodation, particularly in Emerald is a major issue and will remain so for some time.

Contact us

  • Should you have any new appointments or matters requiring our attention please call 1800 811 285 or email claims@cl-au.com

 

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