Insurers and their customers in Florida may feel some relief with the end of this year’s hurricane season. But restoration from the damage left by Ian and Nicole is just beginning. And so are the questions about how the insurance industry will respond.
In this month’s Insurance News Analysis, Abbey Compton and I are joined by Jane Tutoki, an expert in Claims and a Director on the Boards of Sedgwick and Fortitude Reinsurance. Jane shares her perspective on how insurers responded as the massive toll of Ian was being assessed and Nicole was bearing down.
While a storm of Ian’s magnitude would test the preparedness and resilience of any business impacted, insurers are having a particularly difficult time helping customers with restoration. Inflation and supply chain delays are complicating the already daunting task of assessing the costs of repairs in areas that are difficult for claims adjusters to visit.
These challenges are not unique to Florida. Catastrophic events linked to climate change are also impacting other parts of the world with extreme weather and flood damage. Southeastern Australia is coping with flooding that may continue for months and has already led to record insurance claims in New South Wales.
As the costs are assessed, tough decisions will have to be made. Rates could become prohibitively expensive in communities on the coast and in other flood-prone areas. A concerted effort on the part of governments and the private sector will be needed to help customers protect their interests and avoid the retreat to higher ground.