Insurance commission: Butte and Valley fire damage estimates top $1billion

Jan 25, 2016 6:09 PM by News Staff

Some insurance firms have seen their bottom lines go up in smoke after California was hit with a pair of devastating fires of historical proportions in 2015.

Insurance investigators said Monday that the Butte and Valley fires that burned throughout the state last year caused an estimated $1 billion in insurance loses.

The Valley fire burned through more than 1,900 structures in Lake and Napa counties accumulating a more than $700 million damage bill, the third highest in damage in state history.

The Butte fire was nearly as destructive, burning through more than 800 structures and causing damages of more than $300 million.

"The Valley and Butte fires were sober reminders of the dangers residents can face in rural areas of the state," said California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. "A year-round fire season is California's new reality. Residents and communities, especially those in high-risk fire areas, must take precautions now before the next devastating wildfire strikes."

While insurance companies are still tallying up all the damages to personal property throughout the state, they say these estimates don’t begin to scratch the surface of surplus claims and estimates to public entities like roads and utilities.

The state insurance department said that customers should not be worried as they will continue to monitor wildfire claims handling to ensure the claims are paid in a timely manner so homeowners, businesses and communities can rebuild and recover as quickly as possible.


Most Popular