The Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) will pay U.S. $15.6 million (EC $42 million) to the governments of Antigua and Barbuda; Anguila and St. Kitts & Nevis for damages caused by Hurricane Irma under Tropical Cyclone policies the islands hold with the facility.
Antigua and Barbuda will get the biggest payout of US$6,794,875; Anguilla the second largest of US$6,529,100 and St. Kitts & Nevis US$2,294,603. Antigua's sister island, Barbuda, was devastated by the hurricane with authorities saying that 95 per cent of the structures in Barbuda have been destroyed and the island has been deemed uninhabitable. Efforts were underway yesterday to evacuate the population ahead of the passage of tropical storm, Jose.
In a statement, CCRIF said it is verifying the calculations for the payments and is discussing with the three governments the arrangements for manking the payments which, according to CCRIF's mandate, will be made within 14 days of the hurricane. The statement said Anguilla and St. Kitts & Nevis also have Excess Rainfall policies and CCRIF is assessing if these policies were triggered by the rains from Hurricane Irma, which may call for a second payment to those two countries.
Hurricane Irma, now recognized as the most powerful Atlantic Ocean hurricane in recorded history, passed through the Leeward Islands as a Category 5 hurricane with intense rainfall and maximum sustained winds of 185 miles per hour. CCRIF said it is monitoring Irma's passage as it moves through the northern Caribbean and is also following Jose's path. It added that it's board of directors will be meeting shortly to determine whether it will need to offer additional support to the affected countries.
CCRIF CEO, Isaac Anthony ssaid that “The CCRIF board and team offer condolences for the loss of life and hope these funds will provide some assistance. We stand ready to support the government and people of these CCRIF countries as they recover from the effects of this devastating hurricane”.
Since its formation in 2007, the CCRIF has made 22 payouts for hurricanes, earthquakes and excess rainfall to 10 member governments totalling approximately U.S. $69 million. The current payments will bring the total to approximately U.S. $85 million. Last year CCRIF made payouts totaling U.S. $29 million to four countries after Hurricane Matthew.