9 June 2017 Insurance

Colorado hail event costs insurers $1.4bn

Damage from up to softball-sized hail in May in Colorado led to insurance payouts of more than $1.4 billion, according to Aon Benfield's monthly Global Catastrophe Recap report.

Significant damage from severe storms was also reported in parts of the Plains, Midwest, Southeast, and the Mid-Atlantic.

Overall the US economy took a $4 billion hit from May severe weather while insurance payouts approached $3 billion.

Several major outbreaks of severe weather swept across central and eastern sections of the US during the month, causing extensive damage through large hail, straight-line winds, tornadoes and isolated flash flooding.

Meanwhile, the combination of the arrival of the southwest monsoon and a developing tropical cyclone led to significant rainfall across Sri Lanka, killing at least 213 people, with another 77 people listed as missing and presumed dead. Nearly 150 others were injured.

Claire Darbinyan, Impact Forecasting Associate Director and Meteorologist said: "With the onset of the annual monsoon season for many Asian nations, the events seen in the month of May provided a potential precursor to some of the impacts typically experienced in the region during the months of June, July, and August. The early monsoon rains were enhanced over Sri Lanka causing significant property damage and loss of life.

"As catastrophe models become more prevalent in Asia, the re/insurance industry is better able to provide a clearer understanding of the risks that the flood peril increasingly poses in the region. The opportunity exists for the industry to engage with governments, communities and businesses to share their expertise to help mitigate the effects of such natural disasters."

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