European extratropical windstorm Hendrik- Ignatz, which was also known as Aurore, impacted north-western and central Europe between the 20th to 21st October 2021 and is the first storm of the season to drive an industry loss in the hundreds of millions of Euros.
European windstorm Hendrik- Ignatz (Aurore) is the first of the winter 2021/2022 storm season to require industry loss reporting from specialist PERILS AG.
The company has pegged its initial estimate for insurance and reinsurance market losses for the storm at EUR 311 million.
The two low-pressure systems associated with the windstorm event were named “Hendrik” and “Ignatz” by the Free University of Berlin, and the storm was also named Aurore by Meteo France.
The total industry loss is going to be higher than PERILS estimate.
The company noted that the majority of the losses from this windstorm occurred in France, Germany, Belgium and Luxembourg.
Switzerland and the Netherlands were also impacted to a limited extent, but losses were also experienced in Poland and the Czech Republic, which are countries PERILS does not report on.
European windstorm Hendrik-Ignatz formed on the back of an unusually strong jet stream for mid-October with wind speeds of up to 250 km/h.
PERILS notes that this drove low-pressure system Hendrik and its marginal low Ignatz across the Irish Sea and as far as northern Russia within only a two-day period, a particularly fast moving storm.
Strong surface winds were experienced across France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic, because of the pressure gradient that developed.
Widespread but short-duration travel and power disruption was seen in the affected countries, while property damage was dominated by non-structural losses to roofs, windows, chimneys and cladding, with more severe damage caused by trees falling on properties as well.
While the wind field generated by Hendrik-Ignatz was extensive, wind gusts were not extreme and rarely exceeded 120km/h in populated areas, PERILS said.
But as a result, the insurance and reinsurance industry loss is set to be comparatively moderate and PERILS notes this level of industry loss can be expected to be reached or exceeded at least once a year during the European windstorm season.