Preliminary estimates of insured losses from recent winter storms in Texas range between $51 million and $100 million statewide according to two insurance industry trade groups.
Southwestern Insurance Information Service said estimated preliminary statewide losses from high winds and freezing temperatures during the first few days of February had reached $51 million, cautioning that the number is likely to rise. The Insurance Council of Texas estimated insured losses from 15,000 claims so far statewide would exceed $100 million.
The winter storm that pushed through Texas on Feb. 1 brought damaging winds to the Hill Country, frigid temperatures statewide, and snow and ice in many areas of the state.
“Most of the damage will be the result of roof damage from strong winds and bursting pipes resulting in water entering a home or business. There will be some claims for vehicle damage but the majority of the claims will be to homes and businesses,” said Jerry Johns, president of SIIS.
According to Mark Hanna with the Insurance Council of Texas, approximately 1,000 wind-related claims had been reported in the Texas Hill Country as early as Feb. 2. Hanna said losses occurred in all areas of the state. Particularly hard hit was El Paso, Hanna said, which experienced a record low of zero degrees Fahrenheit.
Johns stressed that the current “loss estimates are only the beginning point in a long process of determining the final financial implications for insurers in Texas.”
He said insurance companies “expect to have enough adjusters to meet the demands of their customers. If they find that demand exceeds the supply of trained professionals they will bring in claim people from other states.”
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