Severe flooding in Germany, Belgium the Netherlands and elsewhere has prompted rapid action from insurers.
The German GDV insurer association said the events may prove to be one of the most expensive natural catastrophes of recent years, according to Reuters. Major flooding in Germany back in 2013 (header image shows 2013 event) cost an estimated 1.3 billion euros.
In the Netherlands Limburg’s flooding has been declared a disaster site by the government. This means the State will pick up some of the costs for those without insurance.
In Luxembourg the local Reinsurance Association said yesterday they thought payouts of about 50 million euros were likely.
“As of today, floods have caused devastating and deadly impacts in villages and small cities situated upon minor rivers, as evidenced by the terrible images coming from Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany. On a more worrying note, the final financial and human impact of these floods are yet unknown as floodwaters are expected to rise further over the coming days, potentially near cities with greater populations. Forecasts call for further precipitation to fall and major rivers and lakes are already full; for instance, major lakes in Switzerland have reached or are close to the levels of the devastating 1999 and 2005 floods. In the Netherlands, forecasts expect flows on the River Meuse to exceed that of the historic floods of 1993 and 1995.
As devastating as the effects already have been, it is important to note that in the wake of past floods, mitigation measures have been implemented across Europe and their performance will have significant influence on how much damage the current floods will cause. The flooding recorded to date would have covered a much more widespread area and caused far more damage than we’ve already seen, if it were not for these measures already in place.”