Raetihi business people are looking at compensation for loss after the contamination of their water, but they do not want to see anything done that might limit Ruapehu Alpine Lifts' ability to continue as a major contributor to the local economy.
Yesterday, about 20 people from hospitality and accommodation, trades people and other professional services met with the Ruapehu District Council and its insurance advisers Aon to discuss the contamination of the Raetihi water supply after a diesel spill at Turoa, the skifield operated by Ruapehu Alpine Lifts.
The council arranged the meeting to provide assistance to those business people who may want specialist advice when making insurance claims or a claim against Ruapehu Alpine Lifts (RAL), for the spill that resulted in the town having to use trucked-in water since October 2.
Council chief executive Peter Till said that council was offering Raetihi residents the ability to get specialist advice about preparing and making a claim from Aon.
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"Insured people in the first instance should lodge a claim with their own insurer and talk to them about what they need," he said.
"If people feel they need additional help then they can contact council and organise for an Aon representative to assist them to put their documentation together.
"People without insurance are being advised to keep a detailed record of any costs incurred, damages or losses with supporting evidence and submit it to RAL's insurance loss adjustor."
Mr Till said the meeting gave the local businesses the opportunity to discuss a wide range of issues associated with making an insurance or compensation claim such as the claims process and different types of claims, through to the benefits and pitfalls of collective action."Council felt the meeting was very positive."
Mr Till added that whether insured or not people were being asked to send a copy or summary of their claim to the council to help it develop an understanding of the size of the losses that had impacted on Raetihi.
"This information will be extremely useful for the newly-elected members when deliberating on any assistance council may be in a position to provide, as well as for supplying information to government agencies for support."
Mr Till said council has prepared two Insurance and Compensation Claims flyers that detailed this advice and any contact details for seeking assistance or submitting documentation which could be picked up from the council's Seddon St office in Raetihi or downloaded from the website www.ruapehudc.govt.nz