Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Flood Footprints For European Insurers

On September 10, 2012, PERILS, a Zurich based "insurance industry initiative aimed at improving the availability of catastrophe insurance market data," announced it would begin providing flood footprints during and after major flood events using satellite imagery. According to the news release issued by the company, 
These footprints can then be used for rapid flood impact assessments and will facilitate the understanding of insured flood risk and ultimately help to broaden the range of flood insurance solutions. The project is a joint effort involving satellite operators, earth observation service providers and the insurance industry. It is supported by Allianz, EQECAT, ESA, Guy Carpenter, Munich Re, PERILS, SERTIT, Swiss Re, Vista and Willis.
To learn more about this development, use the links below:

Satellite Flood Footprints (Download examples from the Xynthia flooding)

PERILS Press Release (PDF, 213KB)

Comment: Digitalglobe and a few other commercial imagery firms have previously offered their services in support of similar efforts, but what is remarkable about this development is the projected scale of what has been announced. Rather than an approach of selling products to individual customers after an event, the PERILS effort amounts to a group of European insurance companies banding together and "prescripting a mission assignment" to collect flood imagery and discern what it means, during and after the event. No waffling around with - should we, shouldn't we, should we - when it comes to deciding the importance of collecting and processing this type of data. These companies have made the decision up front - if it's possible flooding is going to take place - give us flood footprints so we can estimate losses as they are happening. It's a powerful example that others could learn from.

1 comment:

  1. That is one of the worst flood footprints I've ever seen. It looks like a lot of people need to seriously unblock drains soon.