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Last Updated: Friday, 29 June 2007, 18:13 GMT 19:13 UK
Insurers face 1bn flood claims
Flood sign
UK insurers are looking at a big bill for flood damage
The insurance industry faces claims worth more than 1bn in the wake of flash floods that have struck across the UK.

The Association of British Insurers said 8,600 claims for flood damage were made on one day alone as torrential rain lashed many parts of the country.

The ABI estimates that 27,000 homes and 5,000 businesses have been hit.

The trade body warned that the cost of meeting these claims could rise as more heavy rainfall is expected.

Claims deluge

The ABI said insurers were redeploying staff and increasing the number of personnel on duty in call centres in order to deal with the level of claims.

The extent of the flood damage claims may slow up the processing of claims, the ABI warned.

It said claims from vulnerable customers, such as the elderly and those with medical needs were being prioritised.

One UK insurance price comparison site,, has already suggested that the scale of claims will push up premiums.

"Insurers that are particularly hard hit by claims may have little choice but to increase premiums over the coming year." said Debra Williams, managing director of

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