Hurricane Laura Expected to Cost Insurers as Much as $9 Billion

The hurricane that pummeled Louisiana last week is expected to cost insurers $4 billion to $9 billion, according to estimates from two risk-modeling firms.

AIR Worldwide said insured losses from Hurricane Laura’s wind and storm surge will probably be $4 billion to $8 billion, while Karen Clark & Co. estimated that the total will be closer to $9 billion in the U.S. and Caribbean, the companies said in separate statements Monday.

Hurricane Laura Expected to Cost Insurers as Much as $9 Billion

The storm, which came onshore in the U.S. as a Category 4 hurricane, left a trail of destruction throughout Louisiana. Wind damage was greatest in that state, but the storm surge wasn’t as severe as expected, according to AIR Worldwide.

“Residential buildings in and around Lake Charles saw significant damage to roofs,” Cagdas Kafali, senior vice president of research at AIR Worldwide, said in that company’s statement. “Residential building envelopes were breached due to debris impacts, and the damage was further exacerbated in many cases due to the impacts of storm surge.”

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