The insurance market loss from flooding that struck the United Kingdom earlier this year is initially estimated to be £279 million (around US $350m), according to PERILS AG, but the overall winter weather hit from floods and wind is estimated as £650 million (around US $810m).
PERILS estimate for the insurance and potentially reinsurance industry loss from the UK floods of 2020 is based on flood events experienced between February 9th and 29th.
These flood impacts began with named European windstorms Ciara (Sabine) and continued with windstorms Dennis and Jorge as well.
But for the UK, the flooding actually began in November 2019, when large areas of northern England flooded and continued with flood incidents seen in December and January as well, before the peak of the winter floods began with storm Ciara in early February.
The UK flooding during the period covered by PERILS estimate mainly affected northern England, Wales, and to a lesser extent Northern Ireland and Scotland.
Based on claims data collected from insurance companies that were impacted by the floods, PERILS’ said that its initial estimate of the insured property market loss for the February 2020 UK Floods is £297 million.
The February flooding was exacerbated by the fact the ground was already saturated thanks to a very wet winter in the UK and the previous flood incidents that affected the country.
An estimated 4,800 properties were damaged by the February UK floods, although flood defences saved the damage from being much more widespread it seems, which could have driven a significantly larger insurance and reinsurance market loss.
The February 2020 floods are the largest industry loss from the peril in the UK since the winter floods of December 2015, PERILS explained. That event cost the industry £1.1 billion and drove much more of the losses to reinsurance capital
Combined with the flood losses from November 2019 and other property losses from the 2019/2020 European windstorm season, PERILS says that the UK insurance industry is estimated to have suffered a total loss of around £650 million from flood- and wind-related events during the 2019/2020 winter period.
As we explained before, the winter flooding and wind related losses from storms have threatened some UK insurers reinsurance layers and we understand some coverage has been received.