Winter storms insured wind losses could reach €5bn

Insured losses due to wind from Winter Storms Dudley/Ylenia and Eunice/Zeynep will range between EUR3bn and EUR5bn, with Germany, the UK and the Netherlands bearing the brunt.

These estimates, calculated by Verisk Extreme Event Solutions (formerly AIR Worldwide), reflect wind damage to commercial, industrial, agricultural and residential properties, and vehicles.

The industry loss estimates also reflect an adjustment to account for increased material and other repair costs in the current construction market. Based on Verisk’s analysis of the current market conditions in the UK and continental Europe, estimates losses could be 10–15% or more above the modelled results – an adjustment that accounts for the increased cost of construction during 2021.

“After Storm Dudley/Ylenia menaced parts of the UK and Northern Europe February 16 and 17 with high winds, an even stronger Storm Eunice/Zeynep swept in to cause damage in the region February 18 to 20,” said Dr. Marc Marcella, principal scientist at Verisk.

“In the wake of Dudley/Ylenia, Storm Eunice/Zeynep brought more high winds, leading to widespread reports of wind damage to homes and businesses in the UK and continental Europe, including roofs torn off. In addition, the roofs of an arena in London and another in the Hague were damaged severely. Extreme wind speeds in London are relatively rare. Transportation of all types, including hundreds of domestic and international flights and rail, and road travel, was disrupted in the UK and continental Europe.”

Damage due to coastal flooding was relatively insignificant for this event, although high water levels and storm surge inundation were experienced in several locations, in particular along the German North Sea coastline.

Image courtesy Zurich

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