8 Sep 2014

20,000 complaints since 2010 quake

9:04 pm on 8 September 2014

More than 20,000 people have complained to the Earthquake Commission over the handling of claims and the behaviour of its staff since 2010.

Latest figures show that as of 4 September this year, the commission has received 20,061 customer complaints since the first big earthquake hit Canterbury on that date in 2010.

Some 722 complaints are still open.

The commission has dealt with about 500,000 claims in total from Canterbury since the September quake.

Customer and claims manager Michael Price said today that, given it takes an average of 32 working days to resolve claims, he is satisfied with the management of complaints.

A community advocate believes more Cantabrians would make complaints if they did not feel intimidated.

Sarah O'Brien, a spokesperson for the Wider Earthquakes Community Action Network, says the figures are markedly low, given the number of people dealing with the commission.

Ms O'Brien says many people do not complain, as they are told if they do the commission will push their claim to the back of the pile.

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