Tory-led Government must act now to ensure high-risk homes are able to get flood insurance
Shadow Environment Secretary and Wakefield MP Mary Creagh has slammed the government following the publication of a Public Accounts Committee report on flood risk management on 31 January. On the same day, the Association of British Insurers warned that up to 200,000 high-risk homes and businesses will face problems in getting flood insurance after June 2013, unless the Government agrees a new sustainable long-term solution for flood insurance.
Mary said “The Public Accounts Committee report shows the Tory-led Government ducking its responsibility for managing flood risk and playing Russian roulette with people’s homes and businesses by making a 27% cut to flood defences when flood risk is increasing. I share the Committee's concerns that Defra does not accept ultimate responsibility for managing the risk of floods, and is trying to pass the buck to councils and communities."
Commenting on flood risk and insurance in Wakefield, Mary said “The Association of British Insurers’ warning that over 2300 homes and 1200 businesses are at significant risk of flooding in Wakefield is worrying news. We all remember the terrible floods of 2007 and many people will be concerned that they may not be able to get flood insurance when Labour’s deal with the insurance industry runs out in June 2013, even though the city’s new flood defences will be complete by then."
“This really turns the heat up on the Government over the availability and affordability of flood insurance. Ministers need to get around the table and put in place a deal by this June, to avert the disaster of homes and businesses in Wakefield being left uninsured, unmortgageble and unsellable.”
Labour signed the Statement of Principles with the insurance industry to provide access to policy coverage to homes built before 2009. The agreement runs out in July 2013.