As areas of London endured their third night of rioting this week, the value of household insurance cover has never been better illustrated. Cars, business and homes have all been damaged by the disturbing anti-social behaviour, and homeowners without household insurance must be worried that they could lose their entire possessions through absolutely no fault of their own.
Tottenham the catalyst
The riots which started in the North London district of Tottenham brought confrontation between groups of hooded youths and a police force that struggled to maintain law and order. The damage to cars, buildings and personal possessions will run into millions and the riots in Tottenham proved to be a catalyst for similar scenes in London suburbs over the last two nights. Enfield, Walthamstow and Brixton all came under a prolonged bout of rioting where it seems criminals and anarchists took advantage of tensions between police and youths in the area.
Damage in other cities
Last night Peckham in the south and Hackney also endured a night of rioting with the police force struggling to keep crowds under control while fire fighters damped down burning buildings. In Croydon homes were ravaged by fire as youths had free reign over the district for hours, before police gained control. Looting was widespread across the capital with homeowners complaining they were left to protect themselves and their property with law and order forces nowhere to be seen. By the early hours of morning, copy cat rioters in cities such as Birmingham, Leeds and Liverpool had also wreaked havoc with looters and thieves exploiting the situation.
Value of insurance
The cost to house insurance companies will be significant and in the long run will once more be passed down onto customers. For some the riots are a chance to vent their anger at society, and law and order in particular, for others it is a nightmare and the destruction of their dreams. Many local businesses popular with local people will be gone forever as thieves helped themselves to the merchandise within the shops.
In times of austerity home insurance is sometimes considered to be something that can be done without, the scenes across London this week have reinforced the value of protection more than ever before.