Bushfire clean-up program announced for Perth Hills communities

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) today welcomed the joint announcement by the Commonwealth and Western Australian governments that there will be a single, coordinated clean-up program for all Perth Hills bushfire-affected residential properties.

The jointly funded clean-up program to cover the cost of debris removal and site clean-up was announced by Federal Minister for Emergency Management David Littleproud and West Australian Minister for Emergency Services Francis Logan today following discussions with the ICA on behalf of the insurance industry.

The ICA commends the Commonwealth’s participation alongside the Western Australian Government in the clean-up program, which is the first tangible step toward recovery for property owners and the broader bushfire affected communities.

A coordinated government-funded clean-up program was successfully implemented after the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires and last year’s Black Summer bushfires and is regarded as best practice for affected communities after a bushfire natural disaster.

There have been more than 730 claims from the Perth Hills bushfires which burned from 1 to 7 February 2021, with an estimated loss value of over $60 million.

Comment attributable to Andrew Hall CEO, Insurance Council of Australia:

This clean-up program will result in faster and safer site clean-up as well as prioritising community safety by removing and transporting potentially hazardous debris in a coordinated and secure way.

Importantly, a government-funded clean-up allows savings by insurers to be passed on to policyholders to maximise the funds available to them for rebuilding, as well as considering all affected property owners equally.

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