OVER the last couple of weeks many homes and business across the UK have been affected by Storm Ciara and more recently Storm Dennis.

These have caused major chaos and damage.

If you or your business has been affected, you should contact your home or commercial insurance provider as soon as possible who will assist in making any claims as quick and as simple as possible.

To help speed up the claims process the ABI1 recommends that you have as much detail as possible about any items which have been ruined.

However, insurers do not expect their customers to keep piles of damaged belongings.

As soon as you have spoken to your insurer you can:

• Dispose of any items which pose a health risk, such as rotting food

• List details of damaged items and take photos of them wherever possible before they are moved. For items like carpets and soft furnishings, try to take a cutting.

Many drying and restoration companies can fully restore water damaged items, so if you are able to store them in the garden it may be worth keeping them for inspection and repair if possible.

For business owners who have experienced damage to any premises or stock this will be covered in their commercial policy.

If you have Business Interruption cover (which may be included or purchased separately) you will be covered for additional trading costs, such as hiring temporary alternative premises if required.

Your insurance provider will be able to provide details.

John Goodacre is a commercial account executive at D E Ford Insurance Brokers, offering insurance solutions for commercial and charitable organisations.

For further information and advice contact John on 01904 784141 or email john.goodacre@deford.co.uk