Canadian Underwriter

Louisiana insurers to pay US$22 million for Tropical Storm Bill

August 20, 2003   by Canadian Underwriter

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The price tag for insurers in Louisiana as a result of Tropical Storm Bill is estimated at US$22 million, says the state’s Department of Insurance (LDOI).
Insurance commissioner Robert Wooley says the latest figure includes claims under the federal flood insurance program. Not counting those claims, the figures is about US$19.5 million in insured losses.
Tropical Storm Bill hit the Louisiana coast on June 30, sweeping through several states including North Carolina, Georgia, Mississippi and Alabama. The storm brought with it tornadoes, record rainfall and flooding.
One boy was killed in North Carolina, when he drowned in a swollen creek, and two drownings in the Florida Panhandle are being blamed on Bill. Another man in Georgia was killed by a tree downed in the storm.
In some areas, winds were as high as 60 mph, and rainfall ranged from 5 to 10 inches.
In Louisiana, the storm caused about US$9.1 million in homeowners’ claims, US$5.1 million in personal auto claims, $657,000 commercial auto claims, and $4.5 million in commercial property claims. Federal flood claims totaled $2.6 million.
“I think we’re fortunate Tropical Storm Bill wasn’t any worse than it was,” says Wooley. “However, hurricane season doesn’t end until November, so people in hurricane-prone areas need to be prepared in case another storm hits.”
So far this year, the Atlantic storm season has produced two hurricanes Claudette and Danny and three tropical storms. This makes it one of the most active seasons to date, bearing out early predictions that 2003 would produce a high number of named storms.

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