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'Friederike' caused €1 billion in damages in Germany

January 25, 2018

The deadly winter storm "Friederike" that swept through western Europe is estimated to have caused around €1 billion in damages in Germany. It was the second-most expensive storm to strike Germany in the past 20 years.

Storm "Friederike" in Saxony-Anhalt
Image: picture alliance/dpa/K.-D. Gabbert

The aftermath of storm "Friederike" is estimated to have caused around €900 million euros ($1.12 million) worth of damage to residential houses and office buildings, and a further €100 million in damage to cars, according to Germany's Federation of Private Insurers, the GDV.

The latest figures, released on Thursday, are a significant markup from earlier damage estimates. Last week, the GDV said it estimated the damage costs to total around €500 million. However, the insurance umbrella group said it had to raise its estimates after collecting data from some 450 association members.

"Friederike" battered through western Europe last week with winds gusting up to 203 kilometers (126 miles) per hour.

In Germany, eight people were killed by falling trees or in car accidents caused by dangerous road conditions. At least three more people were killed in the Netherlands as the storm pummeled towards Germany.

Read more: Weather warnings for Germany now more precise than ever

German insurer Provinzial said it had received some 70,000 claims from the Westphalia region, worth some €130 million. Damages were significantly less further south, according to the firm.

HDI, another German insurer, said it had received around 10,000 claims and paid out over €10 million. Industry giants Allianz and Ergo refused to comment on claims they had received in the aftermath of "Friederike."

According to the GDV's insurance data, "Friederike" was the second-most costly storm to strike Germany in the past 20 years, second only to "Kyrill," which caused damages totaling almost €2 billion in 2007.

dm/msh (dpa, Reuters)