Taskforce tallies bushfire bill

Written By miftah nugraha on Selasa, 26 Februari 2013 | 19.55

The old lock-up at Dunalley survived the January 4 bushfire but many of the surrounding buildings did not. Picture: MATT THOMPSON

JANUARY'S devastating bushfires destroyed or seriously damaged 415 buildings, a report tallying the impact of the disaster has found.

The Tasmanian Bushfire Recover Taskforce today said 111 homes were lost, with the remainder of the buildings being business premises, public infrastructure, shacks or farm buildings.

Of the homes used as primary residences, just eight did not have insurance. Of the 310 property owners who have sought clean-up assistance to date, 43 were not insured.

Among those affected by the fire, which started at Forcett and swept through Dunalley and beyond, are 15 farmers -- including one with losses estimated at $1 million, another who has lost 37km of fencing and a third who lost three houses, 100 head of sheep and 560ha of pasture.

Up to 250 businesses have been directly or indirectly affected by the fires.

They include oyster growers, who have been hit to the tune of $3 million, and tourism operators who are expecting a 10 to 20 per cent downturn in business for up to six months.

Just 50 per cent of large tourism operators affected by the Dunalley fire carried insurance which covered business disruption, while less than five per cent of small operators were covered, the report noted.

The taskforce said its priorities in the coming months would include supporting individuals, families and communities, restoring homes business and community infrastructure, and helping the local economy to rebound.


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