For two months, the United Kingdom has been battered by severe rainstorms and ruinous floods brought by winter storms Desmond, Eva and Frank. The cost of the damages these storms have wrought upon homes, businesses and general infrastructure is an estimated £5 billion, and the Association of British Insurers (ABI) estimates that insurance pay-outs from storms so far will reach £1.3 billion. That averages out to an estimated pay out of £50,000 for each domestic flood claim, compared to an average of £31,000 from the 2013-14 winter storms.
Because there has been no extended lull in this inclement weather, much of the ground is saturated with excess water. This has left many areas highly susceptible to more damaging floods. While volunteers and the army are currently erecting temporary defences to impede any forthcoming floods, it may not be enough.
At the time of publication, Storm Jonas is expected to buffet the United Kingdom with torrential rain and fierce gales, with the potential for snow and ice. Currently, more than half the nation is under a flood warning (meaning flooding is expected) and an additional quarter is under a flood alert (meaning flooding is possible). (more…)