Friday 22 January 2021 8:56 am

When it rains, it pours: Storm Christoph strikes up to £120m of insurance damage across the UK

UK insurance losses could reach up to £120m in the wake of Storm Christoph with Wales hit the hardest, according to a PwC insurance leader.

Residents have been forced to leave their homes and a major incident declared in Wales after enduring the highest rainfall of the four UK nations.

Around 80 people, including care home residents, were evacuated during flooding in Skewen, while severe warnings remain in place due to high river levels.

The Welsh Government said it would work with councils to deliver payments ranging from £500 to £1,000 to affected households.

Mohammed Khan, General Insuance Leader at PwC, has warned of significant insurance losses but says damages should not surpass the numbers caused by Storm Ciara in February 2020.

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Kahn said: “It is still very early to say what the impact on the general insurance industry will be but based on the current weather, PwC estimates that the losses from Storm Christoph will be between £80m and £120m.

“This is clearly dependent on what future rainfall occurs but currently would be less than the losses that occurred from Storm Ciara last year.”

In the UK, hundreds of thousands of homes are harder to insure due to their high risk of flooding, meaning they may be charged higher premiums.

Flood Re, a joint initiative between the government and insurers, aims to make the flood cover section of household insurance policies more affordable.

Khan said: “Due to the existence of Flood Re, homeowners who have seen their properties flooded will not necessarily see an increase in the flood element of their premiums on renewal, following the recent storms and current weather.

“Flood Re charges a fixed premium for the flood element of home insurance for properties built in 2009 and prior.”

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