La. Department Says Ivan’s Costs Are Nearly $7.2 Million

September 30, 2004

Louisiana Commissioner of Insurance Robert Wooley said the Department’s first estimate of Hurricane Ivan damage in Louisiana is $7,170,000.00, based on a survey of the major insurance carriers in the state. Wooley added that this estimate is based on the industry’s best guess as to what they will ultimately pay in claims due to Ivan.

The following are the expected industry losses in Louisiana broken down by type of insurance:

* Homeowners: 2,820 claims or $5.92 million;
* Private passenger automobile: 430 claims or $344,000;
* Commercial auto: 20 claims or $76,000;
* Commercial property: 420 claims or $588,000;
* Federal Flood: 30 claims or $240,000

Wooley noted that the Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (Citizens), operator of the state’s high risk property insurance pools (the FAIR and Coastal Plans), had the greatest share of these losses.

“Citizens writes a significant portion of the homeowners insurance in Louisiana’s coastal parishes and as a result, they were hit hardest by Hurricane Ivan. Of the $7.2 million in currently estimated damages, $3.1 million represents Citizens’ property losses,” Wooley said.

Wooley contended that while some coastal residents unfortunately suffered significant property damage as a result of Ivan, the state as a whole was fortunate to have been spared a direct hit. Ivan is estimated to have caused billions of dollars in damages in the Mississippi, Alabama and Florida coastal regions.

The last major storm to hit Louisiana was Tropical Storm Bill, which came ashore southwest of Houma on June 30, 2003. The Department of Insurance estimated Bill’s insured damages at nearly $22 million, which included federal flood insurance claims.

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