Nova Scotia

Compensation offered for December storm

Help is being offered to Nova Scotians who suffered property damage as a result of a violent wind and rainstorm that happened mid-December of last year.

Province sets up $3 million disaster fund

Part of the roof on a seniors' home in Windsor blew off during a violent wind and rainstorm in December.

Help is being offered to Nova Scotians who suffered property damage as a result of a violent wind and rainstorm that happened mid-December of last year.  

The provincial government announced Thursday that it is offering $3 million in disaster relief.

Nova Scotians with uninsured damage in Digby, Annapolis, Kings, Hants, Halifax, Colchester, Pictou, Guysborough, Antigonish, Victoria, Inverness, Richmond, and Cape Breton counties may be eligible for assistance.

Justice Minister Ross Landry said the money will cover water damage and some wind damage.

"If it's a non-insurable item like, for example, when water runs over the land and it causes some damage, that that can be something that's looked at," he said Thursday.

"Wind damage is not necessarily something that's completely covered. The roofs are gone off the house, that would be covered by your house insurance but if it was some part or some structure that would not necessarily be an insurable item that may have some consideration."

Landry said this is the third time in a year the province is offering aid for storm damage —  the first time that has ever happened.

"Last year was an extraordinary time for damaging weather in the province. It is the first time any Nova Scotia government has announced three disaster financial assistance programs for one year," he said.

"This is a reminder to us all that emergencies do happen here at home. Please take time to ensure your family has an emergency plan and kit in place."

During the four-day span in December, up to 130 mm of rain fell in some areas. The heavy rain was accompanied by high winds and storm surge that caused damage from Digby County through much of central and eastern Nova Scotia, including Cape Breton.

In one incident, 13 seniors were evacuated from Kingsway Gardens Home in Windsor when the unoccupied rear section of the assisted-living centre collapsed overnight on Dec. 13.

The province also offered assistance after flooding in the small community of Meat Cove in northern Cape Breton last August. That cost about $8 million.

Flooding in central and southwestern parts of Nova Scotia in early November is likely to cost the province about $5.5 million.

From August to the end of December, severe wind and rain storms caused significant damage across the province. The estimated value of the new program brings the total for disaster assistance to more than $16-million for storms in 2010.

An official said most of those claims have already been paid out.

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