Intolerable flood insurance situation needs addressing fast in Doncaster, says Starmer

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has said flood-hit Doncaster residents who can’t get home insurance have been left in an ‘intolerable position’ and the issue needs addressing fast.

By George Torr
Friday, 29th May 2020, 11:44 am
Updated Monday, 1st June 2020, 11:44 am

Sir Keir, who spoke to members of the media after holding a Zoom meeting with Doncaster residents, said Governments needed to ‘stop reacting’ and start properly planning for flooding events.

Hundreds of homes were deluged back in November 2019 when the River Don burst its banks.

Doncaster Mayor Ros Jones earlier this year said families are having to choose to feed their families instead of paying extortionate home insurance premiums in places like Bentley, which has been delugued twice in 12 years.

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Sir Keir Starmer

The mayor said she was told one firm had quoted £7,500 for cover for one household.

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The Government has ordered an independent investigation to find out why hundreds of people could not get home insurance following the 2007 floods.

“We’re still in a place where we’re reacting to floods everytime they happen rather than accepting that we’re in a state where flooding is likely and should be properly assessed as an ongoing strategy,” Sir Keir said.

“We can’t have anymore of reacting after the events year on year - plan and know it’s going to happen and have a strategy around it in the first place.

“These are fundamental things across the country and people are utterly fed up with this pretty much annual devastation of people’s homes and livelihoods so stop reacting and get together on a long term basis.

“We’ve got to do something about the insurance situation. It's intolerable for people to be left essentially in a position where they can’t be insured and we know there is risk of flooding in the future.

“We need to find a solution, whether that’s working with insurance companies to require certain packages to be available or whether it’s some other package that we need to look into and we cannot simply leave the situation as it is.

“It was a devastating situation last year and now it’s more likely to be a bigger group of people in the future.

“We can’t wait for the end of this year to just repeat the same misery for those people.”