A man walks across the rubble of collapsed buildings in Kahramanmaras, Turkey on February 7, 2023. A man walks across the rubble of collapsed buildings in Kahramanmaras, Turkey on February 7, 2023. (Credit: Adem Altan/AFP/Getty Images)

Global economic damage from natural disasters in the first quarter of 2023 hit $77 billion – the highest Q1 total since 2011 – according to the new Natural Catastrophe Report from Gallagher Re.

The biggest driver of loss to start 2023 was an earthquake sequence in Turkey and Syria in February. This included a 7.8-magnitude earthquake on February 6 in southeastern Turkey, near the Syrian border, that was followed by a 7.5-magnitude aftershock a few hours later. Thousands of aftershocks continued across the region in the days that followed, including a 6.3-magnitude quake on February 20. Currently, 57,759 deaths have been attributed to these earthquakes that caused a likely $45 billion (USD) in damage.

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Brittney Meredith-Miller

Brittney Meredith-Miller is assistant editor of PropertyCasualty360.com. She can be reached at [email protected]

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