What should you do after a natural flood?
Following a flood you can start clean-up and make safe repairs without speaking to us first. Follow these steps to ensure that we have got you covered.
Don't wait! You can take steps to minimise damage and disruption following a flood and we encourage you to take these steps where it is safe to do so. Follow our guide to get back to enjoying your home and property as soon as possible.
Prioritise your safety first
- If you have a disability or need support, contact your support network or call 111 in an emergency.
- Turn off power at the mains if water has entered your house. Don’t turn it back on again until it has been checked by an electrician.
- Be cautious and follow the advice of authorities.
- If you’ve had to evacuate, only return to your home once it is safe enough to do so.
- Treat all floodwaters as contaminated - if you come into contact with floodwaters, wash your clothes, shoes and skin afterward.
- Don’t attempt to drive your vehicle if it has suffered water damage. This is especially important for electric vehicles.
- Don't attempt to drive or walk through any flood water unless necessary.
Claim online as soon as you can
With phone lines busy after any large weather event, it's best to make your insurance claim online via My Tower. If you don’t have an account yet, you can use our online claims form. This will save you time and keep phone lines available to those who need urgent assistance.
Read your policy wording – you might find out that you can make a claim for something you didn’t know about.
If you require urgent assistance or your home is unsafe to live in phone us on 0800 379 372. Tower offers temporary accommodation if your house is uninhabitable.
Collect information for your claim
- Write a list of everything that was damaged to ensure you don’t miss anything.
- If you can access any proof of purchase for items that were damaged, keep these receipts together with the list.
- Record the damage using video or photos before starting any clean up.
- Keep any damaged items that don’t pose a health and safety risk.
- Take pictures of the waterline on your walls and furniture.
- Retain copies of invoices for all make-safe repairs.
Conduct make-safe repairs and clean up
You can do these things prior to your claim being lodged and accepted.
When cleaning, wear a mask, gloves and overalls to minimise exposure to possibly hazardous materials.
- Get essential services, such as water, electricity, gas and sewerage, repaired and keep copies of any invoices.
- Move damaged items out of your home.
- Discard any water or mud-damaged goods that pose a health risk, such as saturated carpets and soft furnishings. Dispose of them safely after listing and photographing them and in accordance with the directions of your local council.
- Clean up as much as you can. It’s helpful if you have a covered space to start drying out your things – you’d be surprised by how much you can save if they are dried early.
- To dry carpet, start by removing everything from the affected area and the excess water, open the windows and doors if you’re able to, to get as much air in the house as possible while you do this.
- If you can safely access and run fans and dehumidifiers, use them to help dry carpet and remove moisture from your home.
Above all, the safety of you and your whānau is the single most important thing. Only carry out the above steps if it is safe to do so and, remember, we are here to help. Do reach out to us if you need assistance.
When a natural disaster like a flood hits, our phone lines and assessors, as well as tradespeople and suppliers, will be busier than usual and we may not be able to get out to your home right away. We will prioritise claims to help those most in need. Following these steps will ensure that, when an assessor attends, you can be assured we have got you covered.