GOVERNMENT has received a total of US$5.84 million (TT$39.42 million) from the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) following the heavy rainfall that occurred in T&T earlier this month
Between October 5 and 8, 2022, rainfall caused widespread damage to properties in eastern Trinidad affecting areas including Arouca, Arima, Tunapuna, Sangre Grande, Piarco and St Helena.
Forty-one-year-old farmer Theresa Lynch lost her life when she was swept away by floodwaters in her village of La Pastora in Arouca.
The Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government reported a total of 75 incidents of flooding.
There were 36 reports of flooding in Tunapuna/Piarco Regional Corporation including the Eastern Main Road, Five Rivers, Macoya, Piarco Old Road, Priority Bus Route in Arouca, Tunapuna Road, St Cecelia Road, St Augustine, Thomas Street and Paradise Gardens. Twenty-three reports came from the Sangre Grande region. There were also 18 occurrences of landslides, along with around 11 incidents of wind damage.
There was also damage caused by flooding in Tobago, as the island’s Emergency Management Agency reported debris and fallen trees blocking access to Stonehaven Bay, Black Rock; Culloden Bay, Golden Lane; Sawmill Road, Mt St George; and Big River Hill, Mason Hall.
Landslides were reported along Mason Hall Road and Plymouth Road between Summer Hill and Whim Development.
The Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) reported that the heavy rainfall impacted operations at 25 surface water treatment facilities in Trinidad’s northern region and four in Tobago.
In a report on its website on Friday, the CCRIF said that of the US$5.84 million the T&T Government received from the facility, US$5,115,782 (TT$34.52 million) was made on the country’s excess rainfall policy for Trinidad and US$726,932 (TT$4.90 million) on the excess rainfall policy for Tobago.
In a September 3, 2021, news release on its website, CCRIF said since Trinidad and Tobago purchased coverage for excess rainfall in 2017, the country had received payouts under its excess rainfall policy each year – five payouts totalling US$12.5 million. The payout earlier this month makes it six payouts in six years for a total of US$18.34 million.
The risk insurance facility said in September 2021, previous payouts to Trinidad and Tobago for excess rainfall were made, for example, for the periods of heavy rainfall on October 18 and October 20 in 2017 and 2018 respectively, with the Government receiving a total of US$9.5 million for those two events.
“The two payouts in 2017 and 2018 were used by the Government for general cleanup such as clearing debris; providing building materials and appliances to households impacted by the rains; providing payments to relief workers; and for repairs to the Uriah Butler Highway (the Caroni section of the highway), which was damaged by the 2018 rains,” said CCRIF.
The Government of Trinidad and Tobago also has cover for tropical cyclones (one policy for Trinidad and one for Tobago) and for earthquakes.
The US$5.84 million CCRIF paid to the T&T Government was part of four payouts totalling US$15.2 million that the institution disbursed for rain damage this month.
Nicaragua received US$8.9 million on the country’s tropical cyclone policy following Hurricane Julia, which made landfall in Nicaragua on October 9. And Antigua and Barbuda received US$420,645 on the country’s excess rainfall policy following rains associated with Tropical Cyclone Fiona.
CCRIF said a country’s policy with the facility is triggered when the modelled loss for a hazard event in that country equals or exceeds the attachment point (similar to a deductible in a traditional insurance contract) selected by the country, which is specified in the policy contract between CCRIF and the country.
Parametric insurance offered by CCRIF provides a level of financial protection for countries vulnerable to natural hazards, the facility said.
Parametric insurance describes a type of insurance contract that insures a policyholder against the occurrence of a specific event by paying a set amount based on the magnitude of the event, as opposed to the magnitude of the losses in a traditional indemnity policy.
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