Monsoon rains led to catastrophic flooding throughout parts of Pakistan and India in September, killing at least 648 people and damaging or destroying 375,000 homes. In India’s Jammu and Kashmir region, the local government tentatively estimated economic losses of INR1.0trn – $16bn. Insured losses were estimated at INR9.0bn or $150mn. In Pakistan, economic losses in Punjab Province alone were put at PKR200bn – $2.0bn – representing the fifth consecutive year that Pakistan has endured a billion-dollar flood event, according to the latest Global Catastrophe Recap report from Aon Benfield's Impact Forecasting
Elsewhere in Asia the seasonal rains resulted in flooding across parts of Thailand, China, and northeastern India, causing combined economic losses in excess of $2.1bn.
Asia Pacific head of Impact Forecasting Adityam Krovvidi said that “floods causing significant economic losses are on the rise in Asia. Though the insured losses are very low for many events, the potential for a big surprise like the 2011 Thai floods is high. Pearl River Delta and Ho Chi Minh City among others are good examples in the region. Impact Forecasting has recognized the potential for major insured losses and has been developing several realistic disaster scenarios (RDS) for Asian floods in addition to fully probabilistic models. Work is complete or in progress in Thailand, China, Vietnam, Jakarta and Malaysia.”
In developed markets, flooding hit the US, with one event seeing the aftermaths of Hurricane Norbert and Tropical Storm Dolly combining with monsoonal moisture to generate flash floods in Arizona, Nevada and California. Some locations recorded rainfall totals equal to a 1-in-1,000 year event, and the total economic loss approached $225m, with insurance losses approaching $100m.
Hurricane Odile struck Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, killing five people and injuring 135 others. Total economic losses are expected to reach the low-digit billions of US dollars. Preliminary insured losses were put at a minimum of $522m.
Elsewhere, typhoon Kalmaegi made separate landfalls in the Philippines, China, and Vietnam, killing 31 people and producing combined economic losses of almost $3.0bn.