Shock Wave

Information remains limited after massive explosions demolish Chinese Port of Tianjin in August

Massive explosions that rocked the Port of Tianjin, China, in August, killing an estimated 146 people, are likely to be one of the largest insured man-made losses to date in Asia, according to a report released by a global risk management firm specializing in the effects of catastrophes.

One month after the disaster, 27 people are still listed as missing. Initial analysis indicates that the two explosions will generate insured losses of between $1.6 billion and $3.3 billion.

“It will certainly be considered one of the most complex insurance and reinsurance losses in recent history,” said James Nash, CEO of Asia Pacific Operations for Guy Carpenter and Company.

The existence of toxic substances and the exclusion zone around the disaster have made access to the impacted area extremely difficult. The Guy Carpenter report provides initial loss estimates and outlines the many variables involved in assessing the losses emanating from the two initial explosions that occurred on August 12, 2015.

The fireball and shock wave from the explosions blasted shipping containers and incinerated vehicles in the port and on an adjacent highway overpass. It destroyed warehouses, production facilities and dormitories, impacted the nearby Donghai Road Railway Station and blew out windows within residential structures for several kilometers.

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