INSURANCE companies have been accused of operating “some sort of scam” over the manner in which they charge for premiums for houses in certain areas of Nenagh. Cllr Seamus Morris told the March meeting of Nenagh Town Council that under the Catchment Flood Risk Assessment Management report (CFRAM) being carried out by the OPW report on flood risks, Nenagh was designated as an area for further study.
And he revealed that he was quoted insurance for his house by one company on the basis that he would accept a €1,000 excess policy because he was on a medium risk flood plain.
The Sinn Fein councillor lives in Rathnaleen and pointed out to the council that he was “two miles from a river. God help anyone living near a river.”
He maintained that the Insurance Federation of Ireland was using the CFRAM report despite telling the Government it was not.
“We are one of the driest areas in the country,” he said.
“There are people being refused home insurance and we need to write to the federation and ask what criteria they are using.”
He was supported by Cllr Conor Delaney, who accused the insurance firms of “some sort of a scam”.
The Fine Gael councillor maintained the companies were using the report even though it was unfinished.
“I have received emails saying Nenagh is not a flood risk area for CFRAM but the insurance companies are using it to target vulnerable people. They are trying to bleed people. It is not a flood risk area. CFRAM are still carrying out their studies,” he said.
He told councillors that one of the surveyors for the CFRAM report told him that Nenagh will never flood unless there is a downpour of “biblical proportions”.
Cllr Delaney said it would need to rain for 100 years for Nenagh to be flooded.
His FG colleague Cllr Tom Moylan said: “It is about insurance companies trying to recoup monies lost elsewhere. It is a scam.”
Cllr Virginia O’Dowd, Labour, asked that the council write to the Insurance Federation of Ireland asking them to explain their actions.