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Cyclone Amphan claims 133 lives amid $15bn economic loss, according to Aon catastrophe report
US economic losses from severe weather exceeded $4bn in May

CHICAGO, June 9, 2020 – Aon plc (NYSE:AON), a leading global professional services firm providing a broad range of risk, retirement and health solutions, today launches the latest edition of its monthly Global Catastrophe Recap report, which evaluates the impact of the natural disaster events that occurred worldwide during May 2020.

The report reveals that Cyclone Amphan swept across India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka during the month, killing at least 133 people – 103 in India, 26 in Bangladesh, and four in Sri Lanka – and injuring more than 1,200 others. Governments of India and Bangladesh estimated that nearly three million homes had been damaged or destroyed, along with vast areas of agriculture and infrastructure. The government in West Bengal, India, expected total economic losses to exceed INR1.0 trillion (USD13.5 billion), while officials in Bangladesh noted damage costs nearing BDT127 billion (USD1.5 billion). Most of the damage was expected to be uninsured.

Meanwhile, several severe weather outbreaks across the United States resulted in five deaths, while insurers experienced another costly month, as a significant proportion of the minimum USD4 billion economic cost was covered by insurance. One particularly severe outbreak was seen across the Plains, Midwest, and Southeast on May 4-5, with impacts being felt the most in parts of Kansas, Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, and South Carolina. Most damage was due to straight-line winds, leading to total economic losses estimated above USD975 million, with 75 percent of the costs insured. A major hailstorm in San Antonio, Texas, on May 27 was also expected to approach or exceed USD1 billion in financial costs.

Michal Lörinc, Catastrophe Analyst within Aon’s Impact Forecasting team, said: “The vulnerabilities of infrastructure were amplified by Cyclone Amphan’s widespread effects in India and Bangladesh during May. The storm brought extensive coastal and inland flooding, in addition to hurricane-force wind gusts, which put a further spotlight on the need for future investments in modernizing coastal barriers, embankments, and the electrical grid in storm-prone areas around the world. The use of catastrophe models to incorporate future storm scenarios is one useful option to use as a guide for investment planning.”

Further natural hazard events to have occurred in May include:

  • Tropical Storm Amanda affected parts of Central America and caused 33 fatalities. Its remnants later evolved into Tropical Storm Cristobal in the Gulf of Mexico in early June.
  • Typhoon Vongfong became the first named storm of the 2020 Pacific Typhoon Season and impacted Philippines on May 14-15. Nearly 50,000 homes were damaged or destroyed.
  • Seasonal flooding continued in Eastern Africa; an additional 30 fatalities were cited in Kenya from May 4-6, as government officials reported that the seasonal death toll rose to at least 237 since late March. At least 29 out of 47 counties in Kenya were affected, displacing around 100,000 people.
  • Notable hail, wind and flood-related effects occurred in Spain, France, Germany, the Czech Republic and Poland on May 9-11. Aggregated economic losses were expected to be in the tens of millions of euros.
  • Strong winds and heavy rains swept across western Australia on May 25. The event occurred as remnants of Tropical Cyclone Mangga interacted with a cold front, later hitting southwestern Australia. Widespread power outages ensued, as power was cut to nearly 62,000 homes across the state. No human casualties were reported, and impact on property and motor was subject to further assessment.

To view the full Impact Forecasting May 2020 Global Catastrophe Recap report, please follow the link:

Along with the report, users can access current and historical natural catastrophe data and event analysis on Impact Forecasting’s Catastrophe Insight website, which is updated bi-monthly as new data become available:

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