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22 Jan 2022

Advice for homeowners and motorists as Storm Barra hits our shores

STORM barra

Be aware of the potential dangers as Storm Barra approaches

With Storm Barra making itself known today, experts at online home insurance brokers Insuremyhouse.ie and Insuremycars.ie are warning homeowners and motorists to take action to, where possible, negate any impact of the storm, and to be aware of what they need to do in the event of damage to their property and a subsequent insurance claim.

Jonathan Hehir, Managing Director of Insuremyhouse.ie and Insuremycars.ie has this advice, “Ireland is no stranger to high winds and heavy rain brought about by storms –  but this storm is forecast to be stronger than anything we’ve experienced in quite some time. Many homeowners and motorists will be all too aware of the damage these storms can do.  It’s a reality that every year homes in Ireland are destroyed by flooding, high winds, burst pipes etc. causing devastation for many affected.

While Mother Nature will take its course regardless, there are some steps people can take to limit damage where possible:

Homeowners

- Check your external walls and windows to ensure they are adequately water resistant.  
- During more risky periods keep personal and expensive items as high above ground level as possible, and ensure you know where water, gas and electricity mains are, should you need to turn them off or on at any stage.
- Where possible keep evidence of damaged goods and/or receipt everything that you replace.
- Photographic evidence is useful
- If you need to move out of your home while you are being repaired, then alert your insurance provider of this as soon as possible

Motorists

- Ensure your car isn’t parked under/ near anything that could potentially come loose and cause damage during the storm – e.g. trees/ garden furniture etc.
- Avoid any unnecessary journeys
- Plan your route – if you must drive avoid areas with cross winds/ overarching trees etc.
- Use the correct lights for visibility – be cognisant of other motorists on the road
- Give other vehicles on the road more space than usual
- Slow down – extra surface water, high gusts, objects coming loose – there are a myriad of factors that mean that you show driving slower and with extra care and caution in stormy conditions
- Check your tyres – if they are not roadworthy you should not drive.
- Pull in – if the weather takes a turn while you are on the road find a safe location and pull in and wait for it to pass

Claims

Mr. Hehir advised, “If you are unfortunate enough to suffer any property damage in the wake of this storm or others then ensure you contact your insurer immediately to initiate the claims process”.

Some other guidelines for those affected include:

- If necessary, arrange for emergency repairs to be carried out to stop any damage getting worse.
- Where possible keep evidence of damaged goods and/or receipt everything that you replace.
- Photographic evidence is useful
- If you need to move out of your home while you are being repaired, then alert your insurance provider of this

Mr Hehir concluded, “We’re not trying to scaremonger – we just want to share some helpful tips that, if taken on board, could end up protecting homes around the country and saving people both financial headaches and heartaches along the way”.

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