Thursday, 24 May 2012
Insured losses from Emilia-Romagna, Italy earthquake up to €200m—EQECAT
The magnitude 6 earthquake that struck Italy’s northern Emilia-Romagna region last Sunday will likely result in insured losses of around €100m, according to an initial estimate by modelling firm EQECAT.
Aftermath of Sunday's earthquake in Italy
Insured losses are unlikely to exceed the €200m experienced in the magnitude 6.3 L’Aquila earthquake in 2009, owing to the lower magnitude and a smaller affected population, added EQECAT.
“However, due to greater commercial activity in the vicinity of Sunday's event, the magnitude of losses from the L’Aquila event represents a credible upper bound,” it continued.
The earthquake occurred about 4km from the small town of Camposanto and approximately 35km north of the city of Bologna, at a depth of 5km. The event has been followed by a large number of smaller but significant aftershocks.
“The earthquake was the strongest to occur in Italy since the magnitude 6.3 L'Aquila earthquake that struck central Italy in 2009,” said Dr Mehrdad Mahdyiar, Senior Director of Earthquake Research at AIR Worldwide.
It occurred in an area of generally low seismic activity. According to the INGV, there are no historical records of earthquakes of this magnitude within a radius of about 30-40 km.
“The reinforced concrete construction that dominates newer buildings in the region fared relatively well, although shear cracking in some walls is evident. It is possible that some structural damage may have occurred to these buildings, depending on the degree of enforcement of existing seismic design code. The development of the seismic zonation in Italy throughout the last decades has led to levels of seismic resistance that vary according to region and a building's age. It should be noted that earthquake take-up rates for residential properties in the region are low; hence damage to commercial properties will likely drive the insured losses,” continued Dr Mahdyiar.
According to AIR, the worst of the damage occurred to unreinforced masonry (URM) buildings, many of which were of historical significance to the region.
On 1 April the UK ushered in a new regulatory regime with two new bodies, the Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA) and Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), replacing the Financial Services Authority (FSA) that was established in 1997 to replace the numerous regulatory bodies that previously supervised the country’s financial services industry.