Neptune Flood, which offers private flood insurance policies online, uses lidar to assess elevation in calculating an area's flood risk. Neptune's policies are backed by Lloyd's of London, and the company hopes to expand to eight states beyond the 21 where it currently offers its products.
The Western US continues to contend with wildfires as strong wind gusts and dry conditions pose challenges for crews battling the fires. Colorado's 416 Fire has burned about 26,000 acres, although some evacuated residents have been allowed to return home, while a fire in Wyoming and another one in Colorado have forced more evacuations.
Partial data disclosed by Puerto Rico show the island's number of deaths in the last four months of 2017 was 1,427 higher than the average for the same period over the previous four years. The data were released to comply with a court order in a lawsuit filed by CNN and Puerto Rico's Center for Investigative Journalism, and Gov. Ricardo Rossello said he is waiting for researchers to evaluate the data before the official death toll of 64 is revised.
A storm that moved through Wilkes-Barre Township and other parts of Pennsylvania on Wednesday night damaged businesses and vehicles and knocked down trees and power lines. The National Weather Service will assess whether the township was hit by a tornado during the storm.
A bill filed in the House would require the Federal Emergency Management Agency to consider purchasing reinsurance for disaster-related expenses beyond that of flooding. FEMA purchased $1.46 billion in reinsurance for the National Flood Insurance Program in 2018 after buying $1 billion in coverage last year, and the agency in April said it has plans for the issuance of a catastrophe bond.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency staffing for disaster response faces a 26% shortfall, according to internal documents, and some local officials say the situation is hindering FEMA's crucial function of distributing aid. FEMA says Congress could provide certain incentives to help with the recruitment and retention of reservists.
The Justice Department says it won't defend in court the Affordable Care Act's protection for people with pre-existing conditions, but Republican leaders have expressed support for the provision. "Everybody is in favor of maintaining coverage for pre-existing conditions," says Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
About 600 to 700 homes have been destroyed by lava from Hawaii's Kilauea volcano since early May, many of them uninsured and unlikely to get assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which typically doesn't cover buildings that lack proper permitting or don't serve as primary homes. A magnitude 5.3 earthquake occurred alongside the Kilauea's latest eruption, on Tuesday.
The hailstorm that hit the Dallas-Fort Worth area on June 6 could cause as much as $1 billion in insurance and reinsurance losses, say catastrophe risk modelers Karen Clark & Co. The estimate far exceeds the Insurance Council of Texas' preliminary estimate of $425 million, and the greatest damage is expected to be to vehicles as well as the roofs, windows, skylights, and solar panels of residential and commercial properties.
Some observers say the California Consumer Privacy Act, which could appear on the state's ballot in November, is similar to the EU's General Data Protection Regulation and that other states might pursue such measures if California's is successful. Penalties under the California proposal would be less severe than those under GDPR, although Max Perkins of Lockton said "the most striking thing about the proposition is they are giving serious rights to private action for consumers where there's been a violation."