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Insurance Council of Texas: Recent Hail Damage in Amarillo to Top $100 Million

Source: A.M. Best - Michael Buck

Posted on 04 Jun 2013 by Neilson

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Texas hailstormA May 28 hailstorm packing strong winds, rain and golf ball- to apple-size hail pummeled Amarillo, Texas, easily causing insured damages in excess of $100 million, according to the Insurance Council of Texas.

Only days after the storm, 10,000 homeowners claims and almost 15,000 auto claims had been reported, the ICT said in a written statement. About 75% of homeowners in Amarillo, which is located in the Texas Panhandle and is home to about 190,000 people, were reporting damage, the ICT said.

Hail shattered skylights on homes and pelted several auto dealerships, resulting in damage to hundreds of new vehicles, the ICT reported.

This is the latest of several extensive hailstorms reported this year in Texas. Severe weather, including tennis- to softball-size hail and tornadoes, raked several communities May 15 near Fort Worth, Texas. An April 2 storm hammered Marble Falls, Texas, which is near Austin. That storm was expected to bring in as many as 5,000 claims.

Those two hailstorms, along with the recent one, have been second-quarter events, but State Farm Lloyds, the largest writer of homeowners insurance in the state, reported first-quarter results better than a year ago, according to BestLink, A.M. Best Co.'s online financial system.

State Farm Lloyds, State Farm's dedicated Texas writer, reported a first quarter net underwriting income of $71.9 million, compared to $22.2 million a year ago. First quarter net income was $68.4 million, which is more than double over the prior-year quarter. The company increased its direct premiums written in the past year and the majority of those stem from homeowners. The company currently has a Best's Financial Strength Rating of B++ (Good).