Cyclone Gabrielle claims reach NZ$890 million

Insurers in New Zealand have received 40,000 claims worth around NZ$890 million ($560 million) for damage from the cyclone that hit the country last month, according to the Insurance Council of New Zealand.

Among the claims, 27,800 had been for home and contents damage worth an initial NZ$453 million.

There had also been claims worth NZ$350 million from businesses plus NZ$70 million for vehicle damage, it said. Thousands of cars were written off because of cyclone damage.

Cyclone Gabrielle hit the North Island’s northernmost region on 12 February and tracked down the east coast, inflicting widespread destruction and leaving at least 11 people dead.

“Insurers are doing all that they can to get assessments completed and to agree next steps with customers,” said Tim Grafton, CEO of the Insurance Council of New Zealand.

The council said earlier this month that insurance claims for January’s floods in New Zealand’s largest city, Auckland, had reached NZ$565 million dollars.