Georgia’s insured losses from Hurricane Michael have climbed to more than $696 million, with insurers reporting approximately 68,000 claims filed as of the end of October, according to a press release from Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens.
The estimate is based on claims data reported to the Georgia Department of Insurance (GADOI) by property and casualty insurance companies from damage to insured homes, vehicles, and businesses. Flood damage to vehicles are included in the reporting.
This latest figure, released Oct. 31, is significantly higher than the $250 million GADOI first estimated shortly after Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle on Oct. 10 as a Category 4 storm. Michael then made its way Northeast, continuing its path of destruction through several other states, including Georgia and the Carolinas. When Michael entered Georgia, it had weakened but was still a Category 3, with high winds and pounding rains that left downed trees and power outages. More than 180,000 people were still without power in Georgia two days after Michael, according to the Associated Press.
Jo Anne Oni, assistant director, Insurance & Safety Fire Commissioner, said in an email to Insurance Journal the initial figures reported on Oct. 18 were preliminary estimates. Numerous homeowners were without power and had not filed their claim and insurance companies are now reporting accurate loss information.
“My department continues to have conversations with insurers to ensure a smooth claims process for the victims of Hurricane Michael,” Commissioner Hudgens said in the release.
GADOI Consumer Claims Specialists are assisting residents of storm-damaged communities daily with claims issues and other insurance questions. Those with questions about a claim or are experiencing difficulty reaching an insurance company can call GADOI’s Consumer Hotline at 800-656-2298.
Source: Georgia Department of Insurance
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