Newly released information ranks all four of this season’s hurricanes among the top 10 costliest U.S. hurricanes in the past 25 years. And, taken together, the cost of this season’s storms edges out the cost of Andrew by about $100 million.
A report by the Insurance Information Institute (III) shows Hurricane Charley was the second costliest hurricane, with some $6.7 billion in insured losses. That’s a far second to Andrew, which caused about $20.3 billion in losses in 1992.
Hurricane Ivan ranked fourth, with $6 billion in losses, coming just under Hugo’s costs of $6.2 billion.
Hurricane Frances came in fifth with insured losses of $4.4 billion, while Jeanne ranked seventh with $3.24 billion. Hurricane Georges — which caused $3.27 billion in damages – barely notched in above Jeanne.
Finally, eighth, ninth and 10th rankings: Hurricane Opal in 1995 with $2.5 billion, Floyd in 1999 with $2.1 billion, and Iniki in 1992 with $2.09 billlion, respectively.
These estimates are for insured losses only, and are in addition to the extensive financial assistance provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and other federal agencies.
The rankings also did not include an estimated $1.2 billion in insurance payments by the Florida state-created insurer of last resort, the Citizens Property Insurance Corporation (CPIC). The CPIC was created by the state about two years ago to provide insurance coverage for homeowners and businesses that could not obtain insurance elsewhere.
The CPIC currently has reserves totaling $1.5 billion. If the CPIC were to use all available funds for payments, it can assess a special charge on all Florida property insurers, which those companies can in turn pass on to their policyholders.
The CPIC is continuing to process insurance claims, and will not have final insurance payment totals until late February 2005.
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