Responding to the announcement that the government is to invest a further £120 million on flood defences, AA Insurance says that this is welcome news, even if it is too late for many of the 1,600 families that have helplessly seen their homes flooded.
Simon Douglas, director of AA Insurance, says: “It’s hard to imagine a better investment. The cost of flood claims during 2012 is likely to be around £1bn, quite apart from the economic and infrastructure damage that flooding causes. It creates utter misery for the families affected.
“This year, 23,000 homes that would have been flooded, have remained dry: at a stroke, that more than repays the investment in the flood defences and alleviation schemes that protected them. Those families can sleep more easily when the rain starts to pour down, not just because the risk of flooding has been mitigated but that their home insurance will become more affordable too.”
However, Mr Douglas warned that flooding will continue to be a threat to hundreds of thousands of homes, pointing out that water runoff has caused flash floods in places that have no history of flooding, as severe rainstorms become an established pattern of the UK climate.
“It’s vital that the insurance industry is able to continue protecting such homes and that local authorities and water companies ensure that keeping drainage systems clear remains at the top of the local political agenda – and not pushed to the bottom of the in-tray as soon as the next dry spell comes along.”