Property Claims from WTC at $16.6 Billion and Rising

Property insurance claims from the Sept. 11 attacks are worth $16.6 billion and rising, according to the first estimate from the main U.S. claims tallying service.

According to a Reuters report, that would make the destruction of the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, along with the damage to the Pentagon, the most expensive event ever for insurers, surpassing the $15.5 billion paid out for Hurricane Andrew in 1992.

The $16.6-billion estimate, the first made by the Insurance Services Office Inc.’s Property Claim Services unit, includes only property damage and related coverages, such as business interruption insurance. The estimate does not include liability insurance, workers’ compensation, aviation losses, life and health insurance or the cost of debris removal. Including those, insurers face up to $70 billion in claims, analysts say.

The ISO estimate will grow, the firm says, as many people and businesses are holding off on submitting claims until they can get a proper assessment of the damage.

According to the ISO, the destruction of the World Trade Center has caused 50,000 personal property claims so far, along with 18,000 commercial property claims and 4,000 car claims, worth about $16.59 billion in total.

In Virginia, the damage to the Pentagon has resulted in 1,500 personal property claims, 200 commercial property claims and 300 car claims, totaling about $6.5 million, according to the ISO.

The Pentagon itself, like the majority of federal government property, was not insured on the commercial market.