Low Insured Loss From Indiana Rain Seen

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By Mark E. Ruquet

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NU Online News Service, July 16, 1:49 p.m.EDT?Rainstorms that swept through Indiana, causing floodsin much of the state and taking four lives, may not result in ahigh level of insurance claims, according to an agent's associationhead.

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On July 11, President Bush declared 25 counties in central andnorthern Indiana disaster areas. The number was later increased to34.

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State officials said it was too early to give any damageestimates from the storm that dumped 5 to 6 inches of rain on thestate from July 3 to 9. There was one estimate from the IndianaState Emergency Management Agency that 3,500 homes were affected byflooding.

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Roger Ronk, executive vice president of the IndependentInsurance Agents of Indiana, said that while counties in the northand central parts of the state were hardest hit by flooding, thesouthern part of the state's farm land could soon suffer losses asflood waters move downstream.

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However, in terms of insurance losses, the storm caused minimaldamage, he said. Less than 10 percent of those with flood insurancewere estimated to have been affected by flooding, he said, and onlybetween 12 to 15 percent of the state's residents have floodinsurance. Other insurance losses from covered exposures, such aswind or rain, were minimal, he added.

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Insurers could see claims on the commercial side under theirbusiness interruption coverage, but otherwise "it was not thatbad," Mr. Ronk said.

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