Will Hurricane Ian become the costliest storm in U.S. history? Maybe not
Depending on who’s talking, Hurricane Ian could be the costliest storm in American history, or perhaps nowhere near that bad. High resolution aerial surveillance flights immediately after the storm, combined with computer-aided risk assessment models and analysis of insured property in the storm’s path, suggested that damages might exceed $40 billion, with some projecting the total loss much higher.
Inflation and growing construction costs won’t help. Neither will Florida’s permissive litigation environment.
“A sizable portion of the losses from Ian will be associated with post-event loss amplification and inflationary trends,” said Rajkiran Vojjala, vice president of model development for Risk Management Solutions, Inc. “A combination of high claims volume, additional living expenses related to the massive evacuation efforts, prolonged reconstruction in the worst-affected areas, and the prevalent higher-than-average construction costs will contribute to a significant economic demand surge.”
Vojjala also singled out Florida’s trial-lawyer-friendly environment as a major problem area that will force the total tab into the stratosphere for many insurers.
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