In June 2019, a violent hailstorm unleashed itself on the southeast of France. Hailstones the size of ping pong balls and high-speed winds wrecked buildings and crops and put livestock at risk.
The hailstorm led to record numbers of claims. Reporting from the Drôme region where the storm hit worst, Alain Boyer, an agricultural inspector for over 30 years, said:
“This is without doubt the event with the largest number of agricultural claims I have ever had to deal with. It’s similar to the floods of the Rhône and Gard rivers in 2002 and 2003.”
Videos shared on social networks showed car windscreens cracking with the impact of the giant hailstones.
News reports described how hailstones pounded through trees, crushing fruit crops ready to be harvested.
Alain recalls how “the roof of one customer’s 200 square meter sheep barn was destroyed”. Farmers feared for the wellbeing of their farmland, animals, homes and livelihoods.
Close to our customers
We deployed our team to the Drôme region as quickly as possible, so they could see the damage first-hand and meet with customers.
Farms, roads and homes in and around the town of Romans-sur-Isère were heavily affected. Several roofs were completely destroyed.
We dispatched extra people, including hail experts, to support our team responsible for Romans-sur-Isère.
Due to the scale of the emergency, we put exceptional measures in place to speed up claims for customers and help protect their livelihoods.
claims made in total
A huge number to process quickly. But we adapted, we deployed more people, we made quick decisions. We helped our customers start to put their lives back together after the storm.
Our customers stories
Residents hadn’t seen anything like it
TV coverage brought home the enormity of October’s flooding on the Isle of Man. Major and complex claims consultant Phil Sheridan knew customers lives were being turned upside down and rapid action was crucial.
Simply thank you for my son’s birthday gifts
Mr W called us late on a Monday night. He'd been off work for over four months with Multiple Sclerosis. His critical illness payment had been delayed and his son’s birthday was coming up. Mr W just wanted to know when we were going to pay him the money.
£15 million fire at Battersea Arts Centre
When fire destroyed the Battersea Arts Centre (BAC), the roof and ornate 1893 Grand Hall fared the worst.
What matters most to you? What do you want to protect? What kind of future do you hope for?