Typhoon Meranti Insured Losses in China Could Top $1 Billion: AIR Worldwide

September 29, 2016

Insured losses on mainland China from September’s Typhoon Meranti are expected to fall between $650 million (CNY 4.3 billion) and $1.15 billion (CNY 7.7 billion).

According to catastrophe modeling firm AIR Worldwide, the wide range in its modeled insured losses reflects uncertainty in the meteorological parameters associated with this event. There is also uncertainty surrounding the insurance take-up rates for much of the region, AIR said.

AIR’s modeled insured losses include physical damage to onshore property (residential, commercial, and Construction All Risks/Erection All Risks) for both structures and their contents due to wind and precipitation-induced flooding. They do not include losses to infrastructure; losses from storm surge; losses to crops, livestock, aquaculture, and poultry or losses to autos.

Typhoon Meranti experienced rapid intensification September 11–12, with wind speed increasing more than 150 km/h (95 mph) in a 24-hour period, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC). Super Typhoon Meranti delivered very strong wind, high storm surge, and flooding precipitation to southern Taiwan as it passed through Luzon Strait near noon local time on Wednesday, September 14, 2016.

“It was the strongest storm in the world this year and the most intense typhoon since Super Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines in 2013,” said Dr. Peter Sousounis, assistant vice president and director of meteorology at AIR Worldwide.

He said that although Meranti did not make landfall on Taiwan, much of the country was impacted by high winds and substantial precipitation—rainfall totals as great as 700 millimeters (28 inches) have been reported—due to the massive, 560-kilometer (350-mile) wind field

Meranti closely followed deadly Typhoon Nepartak, which struck central and southern Taiwan and coastal China in July.

As Super Typhoon Meranti passed just off the southern coast of Taiwan, the storm brought rough seas, damaging surf, high storm surge, and heavy precipitation—in addition to high winds—to southern Taiwan, resulting in downed trees and power lines, some coastal flooding, and mudslides in mountainous regions. Dozens of injuries and one death were reported in Taiwan.

In China, the cities of Xiamen and Quanzhou experienced widespread power outages, flooding, disrupted water supplies, and fallen trees.

Source: AIR Worldwide

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