Total economic losses from Hurricane Delta will approach $4 billion, with roughly half covered by public and private insurers, according to Aon’s monthly Global Catastrophe Recap report, which evaluates the impact of the natural disaster events that occurred worldwide during October 2020.
Delta made landfall in the US on October 9 along the southern coast as a category two hurricane, bringing significant storm surge, incessant rainfall and hurricane-force wind gusts to eastern Texas and southwestern Louisiana.
Meanwhile Hurricane Zeta is forecast to have caused total economic and insured losses in excess of $1 billion. Zeta broke records when it became the eleventh named storm to hit the mainland US during the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season.
The US was also affected by major wildfires in October, with the greatest impacts observed in California, Colorado and Oregon. Seasonal direct economic costs from the fires across California, Colorado and Oregon were estimated to exceed $13 billion, while insurers faced payouts beyond $8 billion. Aon warned that both estimates are subject to change.
Steve Bowen, director and meteorologist on the Impact Forecasting team at Aon, said: “With additional US mainland landfalls, the country has set new records for the number of named storm landfalls (12) and hurricanes (six) in years dating to 1851. While the scope of impact to human life and property has been significant, the reality is most of the landfalls have generally missed the highest population density areas along the coastline. The season has been very active, but it could have been even more difficult.”
In Europe, floods occurred in Alpes-Maritimes of southeastern France and Piemonte in northwestern Italy after the passage of storm Alex, with losses estimated at approximately €2.7 billion ($3.2 billion). Insurers expect notable payouts in the hundreds of millions of euros.
Aon, Global Catastrophe Recap, Steve Bowen