Friday, 30 June 2006 17:00

Central Texas hailstorms were costly

The hailstorms that pounded central Texas this spring were costly. The final tally for insured losses reached $160 million. The city of San Marcos bore the brunt of the storm. Hundreds of homes and businesses were damaged as well hundreds of new and used cars, some of them totaled. 

Hailstorms at that time also hit portions of Round Rock, Georgetown, Fredericksburg and Leander/Cedar Park, but it was the baseball size hail in San Marcos that caused the most damage. San Marcos police said at least one person was hospitalized after she was struck on the head by hail.

A similar storm last year on March 24 caused $100 million in losses in the Austin area. That storm produced golf ball size hail but covered a much wider area.

"Historically, the first of June usually signals an end to our state's most violent thunderstorms," said Mark Hanna, a spokesman for the Insurance Council of Texas. "Let's hope Mother Nature is looking at her calendar."

Be prepared

Tropical Storm Alberto should be a warning to all coastal residents in Texas that the 2006 hurricane season may exceed the expectations for an overly active storm season. The Insurance Council of Texas urges everyone living along the coast to have an evacuation plan as well as insurance coverage for windstorm and flood.

Insurers in Texas have settled 159,000 claims resulting from Hurricane Rita paying out $2.2 billion. This represents 91% of the claims from the storm, which is expected to hit $2.5 billion in insured losses in Texas.