Windstorm damage relations – Assessment of storm damage functions in complex terrain
Abstract. Extreme winds are by far the largest contributor to Norway’s insurance claims related to natural hazards. The predictive skills of four different damage functions are assessed for Norway at the municipality and national levels on daily and annual temporal scales using municipality level insurance data and the high-resolution Norwegian reanalysis (NORA3) wind speed data for the period 1985–2020. Special attention is given to extreme damaging events and occurrence probabilities of wind speed induced damages. Because of the complex topography of Norway and the resulting high heterogeneity of the population density, the wind speed is weighted with population. The largest per-capita losses and severe damages occur most frequently in the western municipalities of Norway whilst there are seldom any large losses further inland. The good agreement between the observed and estimated losses at municipality and national levels suggests that the damage functions used in this study are well suited for estimating severe wind storm-induced damages. Furthermore, the damage functions are able to successfully reconstruct the geographical pattern of losses caused by extreme windstorms with a high degree of correlation. From event occurrence probabilities, the present study devises a damage classifier that distinguishes between daily damaging and non-damaging events at the municipality level. While large loss events are well captured, the skewness and zero-inflation of the loss data greatly reduces the quality of both the damage functions and the classifier for moderate and weak loss events.
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