The month of March 2020 saw billions of dollars of economic and insured losses caused by a number of outbreaks of severe and convective weather, characterised by hail and tornadoes as well, according to Aon’s Impact Forecasting.
The weather forecasting and risk modelling division of insurance and reinsurance broker Aon analysed severe weather activity in the United States during the month of March and details at least $2.4 billion of economic losses, which could have driven anywhere from $1.5 billion to $2 billion of insurance market losses, it seems.
A string of deadly tornadoes struck central Tennessee on March 3rd and killed at least 25 people, injuring nearly 300 more.
This broad convective storm system saw additional tornadoes and large hail affecting Missouri, Kentucky, Mississippi, Georgia, and Texas from March 2nd to 5th.
Total economic losses just from this severe thunderstorm and severe convective weather outbreak are estimated as more than $1.1 billion, around three-quarters of which is expected to fall to the insurance and reinsurance industry.
Another major severe weather event saw around two-dozen tornado touchdowns landing across central and eastern parts of the country on March 27th to 30th, with the hardest-hit areas being Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, and Indiana.
Total economic losses from this outbreak are estimated to be close to our more than $1 billion, with the majority of the wind and hail-related damage expected to fall to the insurance and reinsurance industry as claims.
That wasn’t all for the U.S. in March 2020 either, as another severe weather outbreak drove over $290 million of economic losses, while five other outbreaks during the month saw economic losses in the low millions to tens of millions, all of which will have driven some further insured losses.
These other events saw hail, damaging straight line winds and also some flooding impacting areas of the U.S.
Steve Bowen, Director and Meteorologist within Aon’s Impact Forecasting team, commented, “With the globe continuing to focus on the risks associated with COVID-19, natural peril activity remained elevated during the month of March as thunderstorms, flooding, and earthquakes were all prevalent. As severe weather season accelerates towards its historical peak during the spring season, the United States endured many episodes of large hail, straight-line winds, and tornadoes that resulted in billions of dollars of economic damage and lives lost. Notable tornado touchdowns in populated metro areas such as Nashville and Jonesboro, only further debunked the myth that cities are less vulnerable to tornadic activity.”
It’s also worth noting that Aon’s unit also reported another billion dollar severe weather event in early April, as storms between the 6th and 9th struck the eastern U.S., causing significant damage in more than a dozen states.
The majority of the damage was directly attributable to large hail, with baseball sized hail reported, as well as straight-line winds that struck parts of Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Arkansas, and Tennessee.
Thousands of residential, commercial, and automobile insurance claims were filed, Aon said, with payouts expected to minimally reach into the hundreds of millions of dollars and the economic loss expected to exceed $1 billion.
Another outbreak of severe convective weather and featuring tornadoes struck the states of Louisiana, Texas and Mississippi yesterday and overnight.
Up to 300 homes and other properties were reported damaged in northern Louisiana around the city of Monroe from the storm system that is believed to have spawned a number of strong and long-tracked tornadoes.
Some 16 deaths have been reported across the southeast region, with Mississippi particularly badly affected, while over 1 million people have been left without power as a result of the storm system.
Damages are expected to add to the spring convective storm total for insurance and reinsurance interests.
Severe weather watches remain in place across the region at this time.