Muscat: Insurance companies will have to payout nearly OMR5.89 million in compensation as a result of the heavy rainfall in Oman from March 8 to 11 this year.
Data from the Capital Market Authority (CMA) showed that claims received by insurance companies have touched OMR 5,897,231 million following heavy rain in the northern parts of Oman.
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“We got this figure from 22 insurance companies that work in Oman,” Ahmed Ali Al Mamari, acting director general of insurance supervision at the Capital Market Authority (CMA), told the Times of Oman (TOO) on Tuesday.
Giving further details, the official said that claims received for damage to properties amounted to OMR1,583,441, engineering losses were pegged at OMR3,182,608, damage to vehicles at OMR935,662; transportation damages at OMR33,750, and claims on fire incidents at OMR161,770. However, the insurance companies did not report any death claims between March 8 and 11, 2016.
The heavy rainfall damaged vehicles and property, along with the roads.
The rainfall recording stations of the Ministry of Regional Municipalities and Water Resources recorded that the highest amount of rainfall at 177 millimetres (mm) was witnessed in Muscat in the Wilayat of Quriyat.
In Al Sharqiyah North, 150 mm of rainfall was recorded in Ibra; in Buraimi, 116 mm was recorded in the Wilayat of Shinas; and in Al Dakhiliyah, 116 mm was recorded in Sumail.
Philip K Philip, chief executive officer of the Muscat Insurance Company and Muscat Life Assurance Company, said that during the investigation they found that many of the claims could have been avoided if proper care had been taken.
“Our insurance company got claims of around OMR500,000, of which 60 per cent were clubbed under engineering, 15 per cent under property and 25 per cent under the motoring section,” he told TOO on Tuesday.
Of these claims, the maximum are from the Muscat region, he added. He also said the recent rainfall had taken a toll on the insurance industry. “Obviously, all this money would have been saved if there was a little less rainfall,” he said.
When asked if the insurance companies would pay for those who risked their lives crossing overflowing wadis (valleys) in cars, the official said if it was proved that the drivers were crossing a flooded wadi purposefully, that it was a deliberate act; the claim would be rejected.
“But the onus of proving whether it is a deliberate act or not falls on the insurer and this could probably be a difficult thing to prove,” another insurance official said.
Another insurance company official said every claimant should satisfy the insurance companies’ standard check list, such as the identification of risks and factors, and measures undertaken to mitigate the identified risk.
“On the basis of the checklist requirements, we will decide whether we should pay for those claimants,” said S. Venkatachalam, chief executive officer, National Life and General Insurance Company.