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Impact Forecasting December Catastrophe Report: Philippines Devastated by Super Typhoon as U.S. and New Zealand Suffer Record Severe Weather


Posted on 07 Jan 2013 by Neilson

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Aon Cat ReportImpact Forecasting, the catastrophe model development center of excellence at Aon Benfield, today releases the latest edition of its monthly Global Catastrophe Recap report, which reviews the natural disaster perils that occurred worldwide during December 2012. Aon Benfield is the global reinsurance intermediary and capital advisor of Aon plc.

The report is a precursor to Aon Benfield's Annual Global Catastrophe report, which will be launched on January 24, 2013, and will provide a month-by-month detailed analysis of the worldwide weather events of 2012 in addition to comprehensive climatological analysis.

The December catastrophe report reveals that Super Typhoon Bopha killed 1,901 people and injured 2,666 others after making landfall on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao as a Category 5 typhoon.

Bopha damaged or destroyed more than 216,000 homes in 34 provinces including Davao Oriental and Compostela Valley which sustained extensive damage.

Economic losses to agriculture, infrastructure and private property were recorded at PHP37 billion (USD802 million), with an additional PHP5 billion (USD122 million) allocated to the rehabilitation of farms. In Palau, Bopha caused USD20 million in damage.

Also in the Philippines, Tropical Storm Wukong left at least 24 people dead or missing, with reported losses to agriculture and infrastructure recorded at PHP225 million (USD5.5 million).

Elsewhere, Cyclone Evan crossed the Samoan Islands, Fiji, Tonga and other small islands in the South Pacific Basin, killing at least 14 people.

In Samoa, Evan caused extensive damage along coastal areas, with total economic losses estimated at WST300 million (USD133 million); in Fiji, economic losses were estimated at FJD15 million (USD8.4 million).

Steve Jakubowski, President of Impact Forecasting, said: "The cyclonic weather that Southeast Asia and the South Pacific experienced during December has had a devastating effect on local populations. Insurance and reinsurance penetration in the affected territories is significantly lower than in the more mature western markets, so the impact of a weather system such as Super Typhoon Bopha on the Philippines places an even greater strain on regional recovery efforts and the availability of sufficient government aid."

Also in December, winter storms impacted the United States and parts of Europe. In the U.S., The Plains, Midwest, Northeast and the Mid-Atlantic States endured heavy accumulating snowfall as the inclement weather prompted major travel delays. On Christmas Day, 28 tornadoes were recorded in the Southeast - historically the largest tornado outbreak to occur on December 25.

In Europe, at least 277 people were killed as more than 15 central and eastern countries were subjected to severe winter weather conditions, leading to widespread damage, the closure of hundreds of roads, and the cancellation of flights and shipments along the Danube River after certain stretches became frozen.

Meanwhile, New Zealand endured its deadliest tornado in 60 years. At least three people were killed after the EF-2 twister struck the west Auckland suburb of Hobsonville, damaging or destroying at least 150 homes near Whenuapai Air Force Base. New Zealand's Ministry of Civil Defense estimated total damages at NZD11 million (USD9.1 million).

Flooding was prevalent across parts of Asia in December, with Sri Lanka sustaining the worst effects. At least 42 people were killed and nearly 30,000 homes damaged or destroyed in addition to agriculture and infrastructure, after flooding and landslides impacted most of the country.

In Indonesia, three people were killed in West Sumatra's Solok Selatan district after rains caused a landslide which destroyed more than 2,000 homes.

The Iraqi capital of Baghdad sustained its heaviest rains in at least 30 years, triggering floods that killed at least four people.

About Impact Forecasting®

Impact Forecasting is a catastrophe modeling center of excellence whose seismologists, meteorologists, engineers, mathematicians, finance risk management and insurance professionals analyze the financial implications of natural and man-made catastrophes around the world.  Impact Forecasting's experts develop software tools and models that help clients understand risks from hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, wildfires and terrorist attacks on property, casualty and crop insurers and reinsurers.  To find out more about Impact Forecasting®, visit www.impactforecasting.com.


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