California-based catastrophe modeller and risk consultancy RMS has estimated that insured losses from Windstorm Niklas will range from between €750m and €1.5bn, of which losses in Germany will make up about 75%.
RMS said that the loss estimate would be based on hazard reconstruction using the recently released version 15.0 RMS Europe Windstorm Models. The model output was validated by empirical reconnaissance by RMS in the worst-affected part of southern Germany.
The RMS estimate includes damage to property, motor, forestry, agriculture and direct business interruption, but excludes losses from damage to infrastructure. "RMS expects no post-event loss amplification and anticipates low business interruption losses". RMS does not expect motor-related loss to be more than 5% of the total loss.
Brian Owens, senior director for model product strategy at RMS said: "By conducting thorough ground reconnaissance we feed valuable insight into detailed modelling analysis of the event to produce a reliable loss estimate for our clients".
On April 6 Massachusetts-based AIR Worldwide estimated insured losses from Niklas at between €1.0bn and €1.9bn.
Niklas developed into a strong storm over Denmark and the southern Baltic Sea on March 31, generating high winds and heavy rain over northern Germany and parts of the UK. It then headed south, reaching the Alpine region of Germany on the evening of March 31 and generating winds as high as 151km/h. It then moved east, causing heavy rain, thunderstorms and some snowstorms.
The RMS estimate contrasts quite significantly with that of AIR, and as empirical evidence develops it will give a good clue as to the biases, if any, implicit in the two companies' models for European windstorm.