Canadian Underwriter

Losses from N.B. forest fires likely covered: IBC

June 15, 2004   by Canadian Underwriter

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The Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is getting the word out to New Brunswickers that losses from forest fires in the province should be covered by their insurance policies.
A forest fire Monday scorched 125 acres near Lower Coverdale, just outside of Moncton, but losses under homeowners and business property policies should pay for damages, says Don Forgeron, Atlantic Region vice president for the IBC.
“There is always some anxiety and confusion over this issue at times like this, and we want to assure everyone that property insurance policies in force at the time of the loss will, in fact, respond to the damage,” he confirms.
Along with direct damages, coverage may also be available for addition living expenses due to compliance with a government evacuation order. The IBC advises anyone with a loss to first contact their broker or agent, or the insurance company directly.
“Our industry takes its obligations in these situations very seriously, and we will be doing everything we can to help just as quickly as possible,” Forgeron adds. “We responded following Hurricane Juan last year, and we will be there again now.”
No loss estimates have yet been released as a result of the fire. But sources predict 2004 could see above average forest fire activity due to dry conditions. Last year, forest fires in British Columbia cost insurers more than $250 million.