WITH summer on our doorstep once again, so is storm and cyclone season. Suncorp Insurance is encouraging Queenslanders to be informed of the risks they face, and be prepared to handle whatever Mother Nature has in store.
Wherever you live, from the Gold Coast to Roma, Mount Isa to Cape York, all Queenslanders need to understand their level of risk and what they can do to be more resilient.
Suncorp Insurance spokeswoman Melissa Cronin said Queenslanders know summer means storm and cyclone season, and so they should do what was necessary to be prepared.
"There is little doubt that Queensland will continue to incur the wrath of Mother Nature during the summer months," Ms Cronin said.
"So now, before things really heat up, should be the time for action. When appropriate mitigation is in place, risk is reduced - which means homes and communities are safer."
Suncorp Insurance has partnered with James Cook University's Cyclone Testing Station to identify a better way to reduce cyclone risks in north Queensland. The research forms part of the company's Protecting the North campaign - which includes:
- A process to comprehensively capture and report self-mitigation work already undertaken on older homes and review those premiums, which could deliver savings of up to 20 per cent;
- Working with experts on a retrofit program to strengthen older north Queensland homes against cyclone impacts which would also deliver significant insurance savings;
- A new direct strata insurance product delivering savings of about 20 per cent; and
- A new insurance product tailored to low-income earners - contents cover from $4 a week.
Suncorp Insurance believes its Protecting the North initiative is the best possible pathway towards better resilience for homes, while also providing economic opportunities for communities.
"Through retrofits and upgrades to high-risk areas such as doors, windows and roofs, and by doing some simple things around the home prior to storm and cyclone season, you can put your home, family and community in the best possible position to ride out the summer months," Ms Cronin said.
Suncorp Insurance has identified a list of simple things homeowners can do to prepare for storm and cyclone season, including:
NOW: Things to do before storm season to make your home more resilient and you more prepared:
- Check your roof for loose tiles or uplifted corners of corrugated iron.
- Check gutters and downpipes and remove debris.
- Trim overgrown trees and branches near your home.
- Pack your emergency kit (see Page 5 of this feature).
- If you live in a region prone to cyclones, fit windows with shutters or metal screens to help keep the wind and rain out and the roof on.
- Ensure your home, contents and car insurance is sufficient for your needs and up to date.
THEN: When a storm or cyclone is forecast:
- Protect you, your family and your neighbours by securing and bringing in outdoor furniture, barbecues, trampolines, children's toys (including bikes and scooters) and garden equipment.
- Don't forget to move your car under cover.
Suncorp Insurance has been protecting Queenslanders for almost 100 years, and is committed to reducing risk. The company has stood by Queenslanders during some of their darkest moments including Cyclone Larry in 2006, The Gap storms of 2008, the devastating Queensland floods and Tropical Cyclone Yasi in 2011, Ex-Tropical Cyclone Oswald in 2013, the Brisbane hailstorm of 2014 and most recently Tropical Cyclone Marcia in 2015.
Queenslanders are encouraged to be informed, prepared and resilient this summer storm and cyclone season, and can obtain further information about what they can do to prepare, and Suncorp's Protecting the North initiative, by visiting www.suncorp.com.au/protectingthenorth
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