Pune company develops software to help insurance companies assess cyclone risk
With cyclonic events becoming a frequent affair in the subcontinent, a Pune-based company has developed software that it says would allow insurance companies to assess risks to properties in the event of a natural disaster before issuing fonts.
The software – TROPCYC – was developed by Unity Geospatial over a period of three years. Developers Shrikant Gabale, Mahesh Pathak, and Shreenivas Kulkarni have used historical data and Geographic Information System (GIS) technology to perform a risk assessment, which can help insurance companies determine the maximum probable loss (MPL ) of a particular area.
“Given the country’s extensive coastline, tropical cyclones are nothing new here. Every year, the country is hit by two to three tropical cyclones, which cause huge losses of property and livelihoods. Insurers have estimated the loss they incurred due to the payment for Amphan (2020) at around Rs 1,000 crore and for Fani (2019) at Rs 2,000 crore, ”Gabale said, adding that the software uses historical data from the last 120 years to develop a forecast. model for future cyclones.
“GIS technology was originally used for land data, but has now found increased use in risk assessment software. Using mathematical models, the large GIS database can be analyzed and the results can be used to classify places into zones, ”Pathak said.
GIS technology can help insurance companies track cyclones in real time and also calculate the losses they cause, the developers said.
Kulkarni said that until now, insurance companies did not have access to a robust software model that would allow them to predict a cyclone and underwrite policies accordingly.
“Based on the risks involved, the software classifies areas into safe / low / medium / high / wind / flash flood and storm surge zones. Insurance companies can use this scoring system when calculating the MPL, ”he added.
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Besides insurance companies, the software can also be a handy tool for architects, civil engineers and city planners during the construction and planning phases, the developers said.
The software can also help suggest changes or modifications in existing properties to enable them to mitigate losses from cyclones, they added.
The software is now live and hosted on Amazon Cloud.