The significant impact following Cyclone Gabrielle has been experienced by many across the North Island and upper South Island. This event has resulted in people having to evacuate their homes and business, the cancellation of ferry sailings and flights as well as damage to the road and rail network as a result of slips and flooding and widespread power and other utility outages. Unfortunately, it has also resulted in the loss of several lives.
Power outages have been experienced across the country, and we have been tracking these on a twice-daily basis.
At the peak of the cyclone on 13 February 2023, the outages in the Auckland area are represented by the brown shaded area in the map obtained from the Vector webpage on the left while the same map is shown on the right, but 48 hours later being the duration of many dependency deductibles giving an idea of where dependency claims are likely to materialise.
More concerning and what looks like a longer duration is the Tairawhiti / Hawkes Bay area that is still suffering ongoing outages, which started 13 February.
Below is a map showing the extent of outages more than 48 hours later (last updated 16 February 2023, 12:00pm).
The Coromandel and Tairawhiti / Hawkes Bay areas in particular have suffered significant landslips, slumps and damage to bridges that have isolated many communities. This is shown below:
Tairawhiti / Hawkes Bay
Business Interruption Coverage Issues
The impact of this weather event has meant that many businesses that may have not necessarily suffered any significant physical damage are still impacted by the loss of power and other services and are faced with unexpected logistical problems and additional transportation costs due to the damage to transport routes.
In most cases, a standard Business Interruption policy will not respond to a claim for Loss of Gross Profit, Increase in Cost of Working or as an Additional Increase in Cost of Working as there has been no damage to the Insured’s own property.
Coverage may be extended under the Dependency Extensions where this is available but in some cases the cover this cover can be limited by the following:
- Initial time deductible
- Percentage of the Sum Insured
- Location of the Damage to the Utility Node or Transport Route in respect of the Insured Property
- Whether there is a Third – Party intermediary involved who passes the service on to the Insured
- Separating the Dependency loss from any other losses
MDD has considerable expertise in dealing with these types claims and the complexities that may occur.