While loadshedding is not welcome news, especially during cold weather, an insurance expert says it may be an opportune time for South Africans who are insured to check if they’re adequately covered and that their policies include specific risks that are unique to loadshedding.
Loadshedding can cause great damage to electronic equipment, for example, resulting in unfortunate insurance claims. Loss of goods because of theft or burglary may also occur during power cuts, leading consumers to claim from their insurance companies.
“In the case of loadshedding, for example, the battery of the alarm system plays a major role and policyholders should ensure that their alarm-system batteries are tested regularly to ensure that maximum protection is provided. Also, loadshedding can dramatically reduce the lifespan of an alarm battery, and should the battery be older than one year, consumers should make the necessary arrangements to either replace or check the battery,” said Christelle Colman, executive for high net-worth solutions at Old Mutual Insure.
“When the loadshedding period ends and electricity has returned, in most cases a power surge occurs due to a boost in the electrical charge in the power lines, increasing the current flow of electricity to the wall outlet. As a result, appliances and other electronic devices in households might short-circuit or malfunction,” explained Colman.
“It is also important to note that these power surges can lead to electrical fires, with the entire house at risk of burning down. We saw a number of home fires during the previous period of sustained loadshedding,” she added.
This is why it’s important to ensure that you’re adequately covered. When you are underinsured for certain loadshedding risks and have not taken the necessary safety precautions, it could lead to further frustration when an insurance company is unable to settle a claim.
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