A VICTIM of last week’s torrential rain may be forced to fork out thousands of pounds to cover the damage caused to her North Tyneside flat after being turned away by her insurance company.
Gallons of rain water leaked through Claire Fitzpatrick’s ceiling from the flat above’s balcony last Tuesday, ruining her wallpaper, carpets and furniture.
But Claire, of Percy Gardens, Tynemouth, who believed she would be covered by insurance company More Than, was left outraged when they refused to cover the damage because the weather did not meet their “storm criteria”.
Now, the 45-year-old is facing a bill of over £2,000 to rectify the damage, which she says she simply can not afford.
Claire, a police constable for the Whitley Bay area, said: “It’s stressful enough the damage being done in the first place without the issue of them not being able to help you when you need it.
“They are saying that the weather that day did not meet their storm criteria. I live on the seafront.
“I looked at the insurance documents and it said everything is explained on the schedule but nothing is explained on there. It is not very clear.”
When Claire contacted the company, she was told that she is only covered for water ingress, which is water damage from inside flat, such as a burst pipe.
To meet the storm criteria, winds must reach 47 miles per hour and 16mm of rain water must fall in an hour.
Claire added: “You’re not covered for persistent rain unless it meets the storm criteria. It’s ridiculous.
“Whenever you do up your home, you feel quite proud of it.
“Now I’m just surrounded by buckets.
“You’re covered for a burst pipe but not for water coming into the house. I have never heard of this before.
“I looked at the policy before I even rang them and it is not in their schedule.
“I will not be using them again.”
A spokesperson from More Than said: “While we appreciate that the weather may have been worse in Ms Fitzpatrick’s area, records do not show storm conditions.
“We will be contacting her shortly to discuss her claim in more detail and would welcome any evidence from the local community regarding the weather conditions.
“Once we have received all necessary information we will be able to make a more informed decision.”