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PERILS raises Townsville flood loss estimate to AUD 1.2bn

12th August 2019 - Author: Charlie Wood

Catastrophe loss data aggregator PERILS has raised its property loss estimate for the floods that hit the Australian city of Townsville earlier this year to AUD 1.217 billion (USD 822 million).

PERILS’ third estimate, which does not include losses from motor and other lines of business, represents a AUD 176 million increase from the one released in May.

This latest estimate is complemented with postcode level rain and flood metrics provided by JBA Risk Management and Risk Frontiers.

PERILS townsville

The city of Townsville and the surrounding area in northeastern Queensland experienced torrential rain and flash flooding between January 26 and February 10 due to a slow-moving monsoon system.

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology reported numerous sites in elevated areas that experienced 10-day rainfall accumulations of more than 2000mm.

The flooding was compounded further after flood gates at the Ross River dam were fully opened to drain dangerously high water levels, releasing up to 1,900 cubic metres of water a second and sweeping away cars and more than 300,000 livestock.

PERILS says Townsville’s accumulated rainfall totals from consecutive days were the highest since records began in 1888.

“This market loss footprint is another example of the PERILS value proposition to increase data availability for natural catastrophe events and to help the market better understand and manage natural catastrophe risks,” said Darryl Pidcock, Head of PERILS Asia-Pacific.

“The Townsville flood was a devastating event for the region and community rebuilding efforts continue. We hope that by providing this type of loss information to the market it enhances the understanding of flood risk in the region, enabling improvement in flood risk management and protection going forward.”

PERILS’ fourth estimate for this event is due to be released on 10 February 2020.

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