Europe’s Storm Friederike (aka David) to Cost Insurers €1.5B (US$1.8B): PERILS

The initial insured price tag for Extratropical Cyclone Friederike, also known as David, is an estimated €1.5 billion (US$1.8 billion), according to PERILS, the independent Zurich-based organization that provides industry catastrophe insurance data.

The event caused significant property damage across the British Isles, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany on Jan. 17 and 18, said PERILS, noting that most of the losses occurred in Germany and the Netherlands.

PERILS said Friederike generated extraordinarily strong winds in the Netherlands and Germany where a record gust of 203 kph (126.1 mph) was registered on the Brocken mountain in the state of Saxony-Anhalt. The winds caused severe damage and disruption, bringing the Netherlands and the German states of North Rhine-Westphalia, Hesse, Saxony Anhalt, Thuringia and Saxony to a virtual standstill. The storm resulted in the deaths of eight people in Germany, three in the Netherlands and one in Belgium.

Impact Forecasting, Aon Benfield’s catastrophe modeling team, recently reported that Windstorm Friederike was the costliest windstorm in the country since Windstorm Kyrill in 2007. PERILS noted that Windstorm Kyrill generated a Europe-wide insured property market loss of €3.7 billion ($4.6 billion).

In line with the PERILS reporting schedule, an updated estimate of the Friederike market loss will be made available on April 17, 2018, three months after the event start date.

Although insured losses from Windstorm Friederike are significant, PERILS estimates “there have been 12 European windstorm events in the past 40 years which would have exceeded this figure had they occurred today,” said Eduard Held, head of Products at PERILS.

He said these events are 87J, Daria, Herta, Vivian, Wiebke, Anatol, Lothar, Martin, Jeanett, Kyrill, Klaus and Xynthia.

“On this basis, we would estimate that the Europe-wide market loss level of Friederike would be reached or exceeded on average once every three to four years,” Held added. “For Germany and the Netherlands alone, however, the return period for the respective market loss levels would be higher.”

Source: PERILS