Absa to cover Orkney quake damage

Johannesburg - Absa will cover claims for damages caused by the recent earthquake in the North West, the bank said on Thursday.

“Absa's Home Owners Policy does in fact cover damage caused by mining-related earth tremors,” spokesman Dante Mashile said.

A picture distributed by ER24 shows rubble from an earthquake in Orkney in the North West.The tremors were felt in various parts of South Africa, shaking buildings, rattling windows and resulting in building evacuations. Credit: SAPA/ER24

“We received approximately 1100 claims linked to the event on 5

August and are in the process of finalising these as and when the estimations reports come through.”

The news follows a study released on Wednesday by Justmoney.

Justmoney is a website offering financial advice to consumers.

The study revealed that at least five insurers would not pay for damages to houses caused by the earthquake if it was found that it was caused by mining activity.

The five were said to be the three of the four major banks - Standard Bank, Absa and Nedbank - and two specialist insurers, MUA and Addsure.

A 5.5 magnitude earthquake struck the North West province on August 5, with the epicentre the mining town of Orkney. A 31-year-old man was killed. At least 34 miners were injured and more than 600 houses damaged.

Mashile said the study was not factual and that the bank would pay its clients.

“We are fully committed to ensuring that our customers affected by the tremors are settled in the quickest possible time,” he said.