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Storm Eberhard industry loss estimated up to EUR 1.5bn by AIR


European winter wind storm Eberhard is estimated likely to cause an insurance and reinsurance industry loss of as high as EUR 1.5 billion (US $1.7bn), with the majority expected to fall in Germany.

Weather image from DreamaticoAs we reported just last week, actuarial consultancy Meyerthole Siems Kohlruss (MSK) said that it believes the industry loss from wind storm Eberhard would be at least EUR 600 million.

Catastrophe risk modeller AIR Worldwide’s estimate is considerably higher and at up to EUR 1.5 billion Eberhard would be expected to result in some attrition to a few insurers reinsurance tower layers, as well as qualify under aggregate reinsurance arrangements as well.

Eberhard first struck the UK, the Netherlands, and Belgium on March 9th and 10th, and then began to impact Germany, where some of its strongest wind speeds were experienced.

MSK had said that wind speeds in excess of 100 km/h were recorded across southern Germany, as Eberhard moved on to the Czech Republic and over 25% of weather stations in Germany had recorded wind gusts this high for the storm.

As storm Eberhard travelled further east it affected Austria, the Czech Republic, and Poland as well.

There were reports of felled trees, power outages, and travel disruption, including to rail, road, and aviation, while property damage has been seen across a wide area.

Storm Eberhard came on the heels of windstorm Freya/Bennet which affected Wales and England on March 3rd and Germany, parts of France and Denmark through March 5th. Bennet is expected to have caused at least a EUR 200 million insurance and reinsurance market loss.

In addition storm Laura/Cornelius affected the UK and Scandinavian countries later that same week, while Dragi affected Northern Europe just prior to Eberhard.

European wind storm conditions continued this week with Franz/Gareth, as well as Gebhard and Heinz all current named depressions in the northern European region.

As a result, the overall insurance and reinsurance market loss from European wind storm conditions over the last fortnight could easily surpass EUR 2 billion, it seems.

AIR said its industry loss estimate for storm Eberhard includes insured physical damage from wind to property (residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, and auto), including structures and their contents, business interruption and additional living expenses (just for the UK). It does not include demand surge, infrastructure losses, coastal or inland flooding losses.

Currently PERILS AG, the catastrophe loss data aggregator, has storm Freya / Bennet under investigation, but does not have Eberhard listed on its website so far. Given this estimate size, it seems inevitable that PERILS will collect loss data from insurers and provide reports on this storm.

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