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AIR updates insured loss estimates for California wildfires

By AIR Worldwide November 17, 2017

AIR Worldwide

A mangled basketball net and the shell of a burned automobile are poignant reminders of the human toll wrought by California's wildfires. Photo courtesy of FEMA..

Verisk’s AIR Worldwide has updated its loss estimates for the recent California Wildfires after analyzing findings from its damage survey conducted during the week of October 30, along with newly acquired information about policy terms, and a re-examination of the replacement values of high-value homes within its industry exposure database (IED).

Losses estimated between $8 and $10.5 billion

AIR now estimates that insured losses from the Tubbs, Nuns, Atlas, Redwood, and Sulphur fires in California will be between $8 billion and $10.5 billion. 

AIR’s loss estimates represent damage to residential, mobile home, commercial, and automobile lines of business, as well as direct business interruption losses; they include demand surge (increases in rebuild costs that result from shortages of labor and materials), but do not contemplate extra expenses such as debris removal.

As previously noted, uncertainty remains regarding losses to vineyards and wineries. While AIR does not expect losses to wineries and vineyards to constitute the major part of the losses from these fires (residential losses are expected to dominate), it may be that the value of the equipment, machinery, and inventory at the wineries may exceed the contents values contemplated in AIR’s Industry Exposure Database.