Hurricane season 2017: Keeping an eye on emerging storms
In light of a potentially active hurricane season this year, it is important for businesses and communities to make sure they are taking the necessary steps to mitigate the impact of potentially dangerous storms.
“It only takes one storm to change your life and community.” National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA)
The Atlantic hurricane season can bring disruption and destruction to people, property and infrastructure in the Caribbean and heavily populated coastal states in the US. It is critically important for communities, business and governments in natural catastrophe-prone areas to be prepared. The NOAA suggests that even areas well away from the coastline can be threatened by the effects of powerful storms. To put it in perspective, three major hurricanes struck the US in 2005. Within the span of just three months, hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma resulted in $170 billion worth of damages.
Hurricane season runs from 1 June to 30 November. As the forecasts for the 2017 season prove to be more severe than normal, it is important to evaluate potential risks and to establish secure risk transfer solutions. Lloyd’s syndicate ICAT emphasises that “over 30% of small businesses that are affected by a natural disaster never recover. It’s important to have adequate protection in place.”
Looking ahead to the storms expected this year, NOAA forecasters predict a 70 percent likelihood of 11 to 17 named storms, of which five to nine could become hurricanes. An average year typically yields 12 named storms with six resulting in hurricanes. What’s the distinction between a named storm and a hurricane? Named storms produce winds of 39 mph or higher, while hurricanes generate winds over 74 mph.
In light of a potentially active hurricane season, it is important for businesses and communities to make sure they are taking the necessary steps to mitigate the impact of potentially dangerous storms.
Understand Your Risk, Devise a Plan and Execute
- Asses your vulnerabilities and understand what you will need to mitigate your risks. It is important to evaluate your personal property and safety, as well as business assets.
- Consult with your broker to make sure you have the appropriate risk management solutions in place. A broker can help ensure you’re covered for relevant perils (e.g. wind, flood) and that your policy addresses all relevant risks you may face such as property damage and business interruption.
- Be prepared to execute. Understand your policy and procedures so that you’re ready and able to make a claim in the event you suffer a loss.
Lloyd’s has a long history of providing insurance protection to individuals and businesses and helping communities get back on their feet after a storm. In October 2012, Superstorm Sandy struck the Caribbean and the east coast of the United States, ultimately becoming the second most costly hurricane in US history. Lloyd’s has paid out more than $2.6 billion in Superstorm Sandy claims alone, the bulk of which spanned property, marine, casualty, energy, accident and health, as well as other specialty claims.
Lloyd's policyholders in the US
If you have a question about your policy or need to make a claim, you should contact your insurance agent or the party named on the Declarations page of the policy as being responsible for handling claims.
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