Natural catastrophe losses in 2013 were dominated by floods. Detailed analyses have shown that protective measures can drastically reduce losses. For example, the June 2013 floods in Germany and neighbouring countries proved to be considerably less damaging than the flooding in the summer of 2002.
In 2013, some 37% of overall losses worldwide from natural catastrophes were flood-related, substantially higher than the 22% average for the period since 1980.
The greatest humanitarian catastrophe of the year was Typhoon Haiyan, believed to be the strongest tropical cyclone ever to make landfall, with peak gusts of up to 380 km/h. Haiyan swept across several Philippine islands, causing a storm surge six metres high and claiming 6,000 lives.
In terms of its financial impact, 2013 was a moderate year for natural catastrophes, as there were no large losses from earthquakes or US hurricanes. Overall losses came to US$ 135bn, 27% below the average of the last ten years (US$ 184bn). Insured losses of US$ 35bn were also below the ten-year average (US$ 56bn) despite the high number of events in central Europe.
The paper features topics such as: floods, thunderstorm, hail, meteor, hurricane, tornadoes, earthquake, climate change, & risk models.