In recent years, major storms in the U.S. have created massive amounts of damage to property, particularly along coastal areas. Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy continue to affect the lives and economies of entire regions. In the future, whether due to historic trends or the effect of global warming, forecasts indicate that similar, huge and powerful storms may become fairly common. That means more catastrophes that will injure or kill residents and cause economic havoc.
The problems caused by coastal storms are substantially compounded by a long-term weather trend. Largely our population continues to grow along our coasts, meaning that more people, more homes, more businesses, and more infrastructures will become possible storm victims. Besides storm activity, there is also the significant issue of rising sea-levels. Construction in low-lying areas today may be underwater in the future.
While storms, diminishing shorelines and their impact are mass events, they are still suffered on, ultimately, an individual level. Therefore, individual decisions are important. In other words, what do you do with regard to the danger of storms? What decisions do you make with regard to property on degrading shores? Some experts have begun to question the sanity and viability of continuing to live in areas which face a near certainty of significant storm activity and eroding shores. We may have reached a point where, rather than trying to deal with rebuilding communities, restoring beach fronts and trying to mitigate damage that we do something extreme…..move!
Individual residence and businessowners may need to make different decisions about property that is constantly endangered by storms and seas. When such property is destroyed, rather than rebuild in the same manner as before, the optimum options may be to either rebuild on an elevated, reinforced basis or to build elsewhere, in a place less prone to such dangers.
Increasingly our country’s and insurance industry’s resources will be drained by the challenge of handling massive damage in vulnerable, coastal areas. Increasingly, individual decisions, market forces and public resources may force a significant retreat from the beach.
COPYRIGHT: Insurance Publishing Plus, Inc. 2016
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