Car like 'giant golf ball' after hailstorm

ANNA TURNER
Last updated 09:40 06/09/2012
Christchurch storm Sep 4
Kimberley and Paul Gee
Hailstones that fell in Papanui, some almost four centimetres wide.

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Casey Frost is one of more than 160 Cantabrians who have lodged claims with their insurance company for damage from hail.

The storm, which treated Cantabrians to a brilliant display of lightning and roaring thunder, was described by MetService as a "one-in-10-year" event.

Frost's car and her partner's car were badly damaged by hailstones, which measured three centimetres in diameter in some suburbs.

"We didn't realise how bad until we saw them in daylight," Frost said.

"My car is a white Toyota Vitz and it now looks like a giant golf ball with all the dimples in it now. My partner has a WRX and that also has quite bad dents all over it."

By last night, 70 claims had been lodged with AA insurance for home and motor damage caused by the severe weather.

Head of customer affairs Suzanne Wolton said the majority of claims were from customers in the central and northwest suburbs of Christchurch, with around 85 per cent of home claims being for damage to conservatories.

Other damage to homes included breakage to glass and skylights causing water to leak onto carpets, while hailstones damaged vehicles' windscreens and bodywork.

Wolton said it was vital that any urgent repairs to keep homes watertight were carried out as soon as possible, especially as MetService had issued a heavy rain warning for Canterbury today.

"Our advice is that if you have suffered significant damage to your home, you should call your insurer and make a claim as soon as possible to ensure you get the help you need quickly. There is no deadline to when you can make a claim, however the sooner you lodge your claim, the sooner we can assess the damage and arrange repairs," she said.

"We also have a dedicated team handling these storm-related claims in order to give our customers the help they need to eliminate any stress and process their claims quickly."

Lumley Insurance has received about 90 claims relating to the hailstorm.

Spokeswoman Michelle O'Neill said the claims included damage to roofs, conservatories, skylights, carports, spouting and guttering, and greenhouses.

"We have also had reports of damage to vehicles from hail."

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- The Press

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