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RMS to launch flood risk model in India

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on January 15, 2018

The losses from the Chennai floods are estimated to exceed $3 billion. File photo

To focus on strengthening India's disaster preparedness and expand insurance coverage to narrow the protection gap.

RMS, a global catastrophe modelling firm, is to launch a new flood risk model for India. The company will work jointly with the key players in the insurance industry to build models to mitigate risk using its analytical tools.

​Catastrophe modelling uses computer-assisted calculations to estimate the losses that could be sustained due events such as a hurricane or earthquake. “The increase in properties exposed to flood risk in India – whether from rivers or rain – is growing exponentially. For instance, the losses from the Chennai floods are estimated to exceed $3 billion,” said RMS Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Hemant Shah.

“The key driver is uncontrolled development in big cities. The RMS India flood model will use precise maps which will go down to the level of individual streets and buildings to identify risk hotspots – there is now the computational power to handle this data,” he added.

RMS will focus on strengthening India's disaster preparedness and expand insurance coverage to narrow the protection gap.

India is also on the brink of a severe hydrological risk - be it an excess of water or not enough – and this could include coastal flooding, drought or urban flooding. “Little land now remains available for building resulting in pressure to build on flood plains – a problem we see in many big cities globally. And this puts those new properties at risk of overflowing rivers,” said RMS hydrologist and senior manager Maurizio Savina.

rajesh.kurup@thehindu.co.in

Published on November 13, 2016

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