IBC: Alberta Wind and Thunderstorm insured costs over $100 million

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TORONTO, Aug. 14, 2012 – Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) reports that the estimated insured damage caused by the recent severe thunderstorm event that hit the Edmonton area in July amounts to more than $100 million.

This is a preliminary estimate reported by Property Claim Services Canada (PCS-Canada), a service that tracks insured losses arising from catastrophic events in Canada. Data collected by PCS-Canada confirm that thousands of claims have been filed for damage to homes, cars and businesses in the wake of the storm.

The storm’s path of destruction made its way through the greater Edmonton area, flooding streets, basements, businesses, automobiles and construction sites. In addition to the flooding, this storm also brought with it strong winds and golf- ball sized hail.

“It is astonishing how much damage a storm can cause in a short period of time. Thankfully, there were no serious injuries” said Heather Mack, IBC’s Alberta Director of Government Relations. “Looking ahead, insurance questions may continue to rise during the claims process. If you can’t, for whatever reason, reach your insurance representative, and have questions, call our Consumer Information Centre at 1-800-377-6378.”

Severe weather events such as these are on the rise. In June IBC released “Telling the Weather Story: Can Canada Manage the Storms Ahead?” a research report which projects future weather trends across Canada. For Alberta, the report projected more hail, storms and wildfires. Lightning flash density could increase by 20 per cent, with consequences for wildfires. Increases are also projected in the number of heavy rainfall events that can cause flash flooding, with events that historically occurred once every 20 years happening every ten years by 2050.

About Insurance Bureau of Canada

Insurance Bureau of Canada is the national industry association representing Canada’s private home, car and business insurers. Its member companies represent 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. The P&C insurance industry employs over 114,000 Canadians, pays more than $7 billion in taxes to the federal, provincial and municipal governments, and has a total premium base of $40 billion.

To view media releases and information, visit the media section of IBC’s website at www.ibc.ca and for IBC on Twitter follow @insurancebureau.