The Australian government has announced that meeting its own recommendations for disaster insurance in the wake of the floods in Queensland early last year. The floods that hit the region last year cost thousands of people their homes and put an end to several businesses. There are still scores of people struggling to rebuild, nearly a year after the catastrophe. When flood waters came in, the nation’s insurers were quickly overwhelmed in terms of claims and insured losses. The government had to step in, but it too struggled to mitigate the damage of the disaster.
Queensland residents can expect to see major rate hikes on their insurance policies in the coming months. Some insurers are proposing raising rates by 100% in Queensland. These rates are not a direct result of the disaster, however, as much as they are due to the failings of the industry. NMRA, one of Australia’s largest insurance groups, has begun providing homeowners – former and otherwise – with property insurance policies. Some other insurance groups plan to do the same in the next few months as a way to alleviate some of the financial stress of higher rates coming from smaller insurance companies.
The government is still trying to solve some of the problems caused by the floods and has taken steps to construct new levees and run off systems that could mitigate the damage of future events. For now, however, the financial impact of the disaster is expected to continue being felt well into the future.