AIR Provides Cat Modeling Service to Estimate Wind-Related Losses for Plate Glass

April 11, 2005

AIR Worldwide Corporation (AIR) has unveiled a new catastrophe modeling service to assess potential insured losses to plate glass in the event of a windstorm.

The new service, which is reportedly the first of its kind, was developed in collaboration with USPlate Glass, a monoline glass insurer in the United States. AIR’s glass modeling capabilities cover commercial, condo/apartment, churches, and residential structures. A range of glass types is also covered, including annealed, tempered, impact resistant, and stained glass.

AIR’s modeling methodology uses a load-resistance approach for estimating the vulnerability of glass. The effects of wind pressure and windborne debris, as well as the resistance of various types of glass, are modeled using probability distributions, the parameters of which are estimated from established building standards, such as those of the American Society of Testing and Materials and the American Society of Structural Engineers. AIR also utilized results from wind tunnel studies and recent wind engineering research.

To generate loss estimates AIR combines information on the windstorm hazard with information on the property, including building height, occupancy, glass type, size, and thickness. Mitigating factors, such as shutters of various configurations, are also taken into account.

“Glass can play a very important role in maintaining the structural integrity of buildings exposed to hurricane force winds, and it can be very expensive to replace,” said Dr. Atul Khanduri, AIR’s manager of wind risk modeling. “AIR’s modeling methodology, which was validated using detailed claims data from USPlate Glass, captures the response of glass to pressure, suction, and debris loads. For the first time, companies can analyze in much greater detail the effect of glass losses on a portfolio.”

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