Tornado Risk – Lost and found in Joplin

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Tornado Risk – Lost and found in Joplin

A now famous tornado ripped through Joplin, MO at a speed exceeding 198 mph. While this tornado was just one of 68 tornadoes reported across seven Midwestern states over the weekend, this unscheduled event has seized the attention of the country.

  • As of Tuesday morning, 117 people were reported killed.  The NY Times is indicating there are over 1,500 persons still unaccounted for.
  • More than 2,000 homes and hundreds of businesses in the city’s commercial district, including a Home Depot and a Wal-Mart, were destroyed.  25% of the building stock in the city was destroyed, and between 50 and 75% of all buildings were damaged. Current catastrophe models indicate an insurable loss in excess of $3,000,000,000.
  • The tornado left a debris field measuring more than half-a-mile wide and four miles long.
  • Structural damage to Joplin’s five public schools will exceed $100 million. The district’s schools are insured, and administrators are racing to initiate repairs so they will be completed before the school year begins in September.

The media have focused attention on St. John’s Regional Health Center, which sustained a direct hit. Of the 183 patients who were evacuated, five patients lost their lives. Adding to the tragedy is the knowledge these patients were already in a state of helplessness.

While so much was lost in Joplin’s one minute from normal, the community will find its heart and soul in countless acts of courage, sacrifice and strength. As in any test of the human spirit, lost will be balanced by found.

We are proud of the important role the insurance industry will play in helping Joplin get back to normal. Insurance agents and claims adjusters are on the ground assessing damages, so repairs and rebuilding can begin.  Please take a moment and support the Red Cross or another charity if you can.  These are our people and they need our help.


To view photos of the devastation, <click here>

KMRD Partners provides risk management consulting and liability insurance to protect against potentially catastrophic losses.  To learn more about how you can help reduce your company’s insurance costs please contact us at before one minute from normal strikes.


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