Lies, lies and statistics
It’s hard to reconcile the recent claims that a fall in the overall crime rate are consistent with other apparently conflicting data out there. The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) reports a 10% increase in the number of complaints received about insurers resisting claims for anything from flooding to stolen cars, although the Association of British Insurers disputes this. Another slightly depressing report lists the burglary hotspots for the country, Leeds and Bradford came tops with London and Manchester taking third and fourth spots. However, the report doesn’t necessarily indicate that overall burglary trends are upwards. Considering too, that these are areas of very dense population, perhaps it’s not surprising they should top the lists.
Another blast of snow will run down the spine of the UK, Scotland and the East coast before heavy rain and warmer temperatures sweep across, initiating a thaw. Undoubtedly the claims rates for flood damage to property will rise along with the water levels. There isn’t very much communities can do to protect against flood damage. Sandbags do help, of course and community flood defences can be the most effective. One of the best solutions devised by a property owner on the East coast was to rip out all his downstairs carpets and have the entire ground floor tiled. He had the wiring and sockets raised to waist height and special seals put round the external doors. Every time it flooded he would sweep, mop and disinfect and be back to normal in no time. We’re making no claims that everybody could do that, but it might inspire some to better protection against overwhelming water.
Cast of thousands
Somebody is responsible for the claims that building a snow man is a good anti-flood measure because a multitude of snowmen will help to slow the thaw, but it’s more likely that this is one of these wacky web stories because the omg we’ve got snow theme has really run its course now. However, the downside of a flurry of snowman-construction might be a run on root vegetables, forcing up the prices. As one snowman asked his friend, “Is it just me or can you smell carrots?”
However, the frozen stuff is going to hang around for a while longer and remind us all to take extra care on the roads and pavements. The best advice, as always, seems to be to heed the weather warnings and to keep safe.