Fishlake flood victim warn of dangers of underinsurance

A Fishlake flooding victim and insurance expert are warning of the dangers of being underinsured.

Tuesday, 4th February 2020, 11:43 am
Updated Thursday, 6th February 2020, 9:39 am

Pam Webb, whose spa business and home – Truffle Lodge - were damaged in the devastating floods in November, and Chris Jenkins, of Farmers & Mercantile Insurance Brokers, are urging business owners to check their insurance policies for flooding exclusions, or high excesses for flood damage.

Following the flooding, Pam’s distress was compounded when she found out her insurance policy had a flood exclusion clause and she was not covered.

She said she always had cover for flooding, but last year, on renewal, flood cover was excluded on both her home and business – leading to her receiving the devastating news that her insurance company would not pay-out.

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Pam Webb and her team at Truffle Lodge
Pam Webb and her team at Truffle Lodge

Following a visit from Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Pam contacted his office asking for help and was put in touch with Mr Jenkins.

Pam, who was able to reopen her business earlier this month, using her own resources and with help from the community, said: “I was days away from renewal but Chris came down to see me immediately.

“By the end of the week, I had an insurance policy agreed, which will include flood cover, once repairs are made and a flood resilience plan is in place.

“This is a huge issue that will impact more and more people.

“Awareness needs to be raised and more needs to be done. People also need to realise that they are not immune to flooding because they don’t live near a river.”

Mr Jenkins said: “What many business owners do not realise is that, although some protection can be provided for homeowners as part of the government’s Flood Re initiative, this does not apply to commercial businesses, so, while flooded homeowners may have some recourse, businesses are at risk at losing everything, if they haven’t got the right protection in place.

“I urge everyone to check their postcode on the government’s long-term flood risk service and sign up for free flood alerts.

“If you are in an area that is flood exposed, you should think about putting a flood strategy in place and creating a flood resilience plan – and if in doubt about what you are covered for, seek specialist help.”​​​​​​​