11am EST, January 13, 2010 - The Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) is preparing to make a payout to the Government of Haiti as a result of the Magnitude 7.0 earthquake which struck close to Port-au-Prince, Haiti yesterday. Haiti has an earthquake policy with CCRIF as part of the country’s disaster risk management strategy. The recent earthquake was of sufficient magnitude to trigger the full policy limit for the earthquake coverage, effecting payment after a 14-day waiting period. Based on calculations from the preliminary earthquake location and magnitude data, Haiti will receive just under US$8M – approximately 20 times their premium for earthquake coverage of US$385,500.
Parametric catastrophe coverage is only one way in which the Facility is assisting the Caribbean region to become disaster resilient. CCRIF works with partner organisations such as the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH) and the Caribbean Disaster and Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) to provide data and other technical assistance for better planning for, response to, and recovery from natural catastrophes. CIMH is currently running detailed weather forecast models over Haiti to identify those watersheds that may receive heavy rainfall and would be prone to flooding, in particular flash flooding. This will address the probability of landslides and flooding in the areas that have been affected by the earthquake and will facilitate proactive action.
CCRIF is hopeful that the rapid payment of funds under Haiti’s policy will assist the Government and people of Haiti in addressing immediate needs as they begin the recovery and rebuilding process. The sympathies of all of the Board and operational team at CCRIF are with the people of Haiti at this time.
About CCRIF: CCRIF is a risk pooling facility, owned, operated and registered in the Caribbean for Caribbean governments. It is designed to limit the financial impact of catastrophic hurricanes and earthquakes to Caribbean governments by quickly providing short term liquidity when a policy is triggered. It is the world’s first and, to date, only regional fund utilising parametric insurance, giving Caribbean governments the unique opportunity to purchase earthquake and hurricane catastrophe coverage with lowest-possible pricing. CCRIF represents a paradigm shift in the way governments treat risk, with Caribbean governments leading the way in pre-disaster planning.
Sixteen governments are members of the fund: Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Trinidad & Tobago and the Turks and Caicos Islands. In 2007, CCRIF paid out almost $1 Million to the Dominican and St Lucian governments after the November 29, 2007 earthquake in the eastern Caribbean, and in 2008, CCRIF paid out $6.3 Million to the Turks & Caicos Islands after Hurricane Ike made a direct hit on Grand Turk.