MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM -- (Marketwire) -- 10/01/12 -- Swinton Commercial, one of the UK's leading business insurance brokers, is advising businesses to safeguard themselves against criminals who are looting flooded premises, as torrential downpours leave thousands affected across the UK.
In recent weeks the country has been hit by severe weather and figures suggest that more than 400 homes and businesses across the country have been swamped by flood waters. Rail and road networks have also been severely disrupted, following the worst September storm for 30 years.
The advice from Swinton Commercial comes following reports that evacuated businesses have been left thousands of pounds out of pocket by opportunistic thieves, who are targeting premises which have been temporarily vacated following the floods.
One such business owner in the North East of England, was left GBP 30,000 worse off after thieves smashed their way through the first floor window of his bike shop, and stole several high value bicycles.
With this in mind, Swinton Commercial is offering the following tips to businesses looking to protect themselves against thieves while they have to evacuate their premises:
- Lock all doors and windows - due to the high water levels, criminals can gain access in ways they may not usually be able to, for example first floor windows.
- An alarmed security system and security lighting is recommended - if business owners are forced to leave the premises due to flooding, they may not be able to return for some time. Security measures such as alarms and lights often act as deterrents to criminals, whilst also alerting any neighbours should the worst happen.
- Make sure someone is responsible for locking up - because of the nature of extreme weather, business owners often have to leave premises quickly. An evacuation plan will ensure that someone is in charge of securing the premises should the occupants have to get out.
- Ensure that money and valuables are securely locked away - money and any important documents such as the business insurance policy should always be safe but in the event of flooding, items like these should also be kept out of reach of water.
Brian Greenfield, Chartered Insurance Broker at Swinton Commercial, said: "Business owners should always prepare themselves for all eventualities; and with criminals targeting vulnerable business premises during the floods, it is vital that systems are put in place to guard against this.
"Policyholders should also check their business insurance documents, so that they know what they are covered for and inform their insurer of any damage or theft as quickly as possible to speed up the claims process."
Notes to Editors:
About Swinton Commercial:
As one of the UK's leading commercial insurance brokers, Swinton Commercial has the expertise and industry knowledge to provide you with highly competitive business insurance that's tailored to your needs.
With 34 branches across the UK, including 19 regional centres, Swinton Commercial has quickly established itself as the UK's local broker, offering a dedicated team of advisors with specialist industry knowledge in many sectors.
Your local Commercial Account Executive has an in-depth understanding of the insurance market in your area and will arrange a face-to-face appointment with you, taking the time to thoroughly understand your business and its specific requirements.
We cater for most types of business - from small start-ups to well-established organisations, comparing quotes from leading UK insurers to find you the right level of insurance, at the right price.
What's more, our award-winning offering has over 80,000 business customers - and we're growing fast.
Visit www.swintoncommercial.co.uk for more information or call 0800 954 3802.
Anna Goulding and Alyssa Harrison
0161 838 7770
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