(Fan array for simulating wind conditions, at IBHS facility in Chester County, S.C. Source: IBHS.)
The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS; Tampa, Fla.), a nonprofit, scientific research and communications organization supported by property insurers and reinsurers, has licensed RMS (Newark, Calif.) RiskAssessor, in addition to the RMS North America Hurricane Model and RMS U.S. Severe Convective Storm Model. The vendor says that the models and vulnerability assessment tools will enable IBHS to focus its research more closely on the biggest drivers of loss from storm damage in the U.S. to help strengthen the nation’s resilience to catastrophic storm damage.
“Partnering with RMS to access the latest scientific research into extreme weather ensures the valuable work being done at IBHS can be rapidly integrated into risk management tools used by our member companies and the wider insurance industry,” comments Anne Cope, VP of research, IBHS.
IBHS will use RiskAssessor to quantify the potential benefits of its research findings, such as estimating the loss-reduction as a result of strengthening roofs that are typically damaged during extreme winds, RMS reports. The combination of IBHS’ independent scientific research with RMS model science will enable the institute to better demonstrate how extreme weather, such as hurricanes and large hail, can damage or destroy buildings, the vendor says. Insights gained will be used to inform development of improved construction practices and cost-effective mitigation measures to reduce property losses.
“IBHS is a world-class research institution whose primary focus on risk reduction through improved building construction is shared by RMS,” comments Michael Young, senior director of model product management, RMS. “We look forward to deepening our partnership with them.”
Concentrating Research on Most Heavily Damaged Areas
IBHS also has licensed RMS HWind Real-Time Analysis, which the vendor says provides a dynamic view of hurricane windfields as they evolve by collating data from multiple remote-sensing data sources. The enhanced views of a hurricane’s windfield will allow IBHS researchers to concentrate their research on the most heavily damaged areas in any hurricane event, as well as inform and validate their ongoing research into wind hazard and vulnerability.
IBHS research is funded solely by property insurers and reinsurers, many of whom already use RMS models. By using the RMS models and RiskAssessor, IBHS will use the risk modeling language that is consistent with its member companies, enabling them to turn the granular data they produce into actionable insights for the whole (re)insurance industry, according to RMS.