Never a stranger to natural disasters which trigger major insurance recovery issues, the United States had its share last year. Here are a few notables.
Hurricane Michael slammed the southeastern US last October, with winds gusting up to 155 mph. Between the winds, wind-driven rain and storm surge, Hurricane Michael killed 45 people and caused more than $15 billion in damages. It struck Virginia, the Carolinas, Georgia and the Florida Panhandle. For North Carolinians, Hurricane Michael was preceded, unfortunately, by Hurricane Florence in September, a storm that caused major flooding, killed 50 people and caused more than $10 billion in damages.
In May, a volcanic eruption on Hawaii’s Big Island destroyed 700 homes, damaged highways, and wrecked infrastructure. The lava floes covered a 14-square mile radius, not counting the ash and toxic gas emissions. The damage estimates from this loss are close to $1 billion and include the destruction of buildings, farmland, crops, and inventory.
Northern California was victimized by the worst wildfire outbreak in its history in November. At least 88 people died, more than 19,000 buildings were destroyed, and nearly the entire town of Paradise, California was destroyed. The 2018 wildfires caused the most destruction and death of any season in recorded history in California. The wildfires burned an area of 1, 893,913 acres and have cost more than $3.5 billion.
If you or business has been victimized by a natural disaster and is experiencing even more distress from your insurance company, please do not hesitate to give our firm a call.
Evan S. Schwartz
Founder of Schwartz, Conroy & Hack