The end of the heat wave in the Southwest seems to have sounded the hour of calm. The fires which have so far destroyed 20,800 hectares of forests in Gironde since July 12 have not progressed for two days. What give hope for a return home for the inhabitants of the evacuated areas. They are nearly 37,000.
Thursday evening, around 6,000 people were allowed to return to their homes in several places (Pyla-sur-Mer, Cabanac, Villagrains, Budos and Saint-Magne). A few hours earlier, the prefect of New Aquitaine, Fabienne Buccio, had called on local residents to “be patient”, adding that if the situation was improving, the battle was “not yet over”. and fires “neither extinguished nor fixed”.
Among the inhabitants, some have no more houses, or partially destroyed houses. And if it is still difficult to have a precise figure, several people testified, in particular in the commune of Guillos. Their home was engulfed in flames. And the question of compensation will arise. According The Parisianthe hypothesis of a decree of natural disaster is for the moment ruled out by the Ministry of the Interior.
Get home insurance
What to do then? You will have to turn to your home insurance, knowing that the fire and explosion guarantee is mandatory in all home insurance contracts for tenants, and recommended for owners. “If you have taken out a home insurance policy and you are faced with a fire or explosion claim, you must notify your insurer as soon as possible. He will decide whether or not it is necessary to appoint an expert before compensating you, ”explains the Public Service website. The specialist website Monexpertdudroit insists on the importance of declaring the claim as soon as possible. “Whoever is responsible or the cause of the disaster, the insured has five working days to declare the fire to his insurance company”, abounds the LeLynx site.
“The declaration of loss must indicate your contact details, the number of the home insurance contract, the date of occurrence of the loss, its causes as well as a description of the damage caused”, he specifies. This can be done by telephone, in an agency or online by completing the form available on the website of the insurance company in question.
However, if an order prohibiting accommodation was issued by the authorities, the law provides that “the owner or operator is required to provide occupants with decent accommodation corresponding to their needs. »
And for vacationers?
Homes are not the only ones to have gone up in smoke. Five campsites on the Dune du Pilat, including the one made famous by Franck Dubosc’s film, had to be evacuated, leaving behind a desolate landscape. For holidaymakers who have been forced to leave their campsite, hotel or holiday accommodation because of the advance of the flames, they will be automatically reimbursed. They “have nothing to worry about, professional insurance is effective and reimbursement times are generally quite short”, explains Olivier Moustacakis, co-founder of the comparator Assurland, to Capital.
On the other hand, for people who fled the house on their own initiative, and not after an obligation from the authorities and without the establishment having been affected by the fire, again, it will be necessary to turn to their personal insurance. Campsites and hotels are not obliged to reimburse them. “It all depends on the contract taken out, but most insurance companies require a valid reason before compensating you,” continues Olivier Moustacakis. And to receive compensation, which will only cover part of your reservation costs, the insurance will have to consider the fire as a case of force majeure.
And for those who wish to cancel their vacation if the establishment is open, it will depend “on the contract concluded with the host, but also on the insurance available to the insured. You have to look at all the possibilities. If a natural disaster decree were pronounced, this would facilitate the compensation process”, specifies to The voice of the North Robert Bréhon, president of the UFC – Que Choisir Hauts-de-France. So, for those who have multi-risk insurance, there should be no difficulty.