(Bloomberg) -- The earthquake that struck northern California yesterday will lead to economic losses of as much as $4 billion, fueled by damaged wineries and shuttered businesses that rely on tourists.
Insurers will probably cover about $2.1 billion, according to an estimate from Kinetic Analysis Corp., which projected total losses of about twice that sum. Costs borne by the industry may be limited because many homeowners don’t have earthquake coverage, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
“The main source of claims could well be commercial claims, those coming from wineries and vineyards and other commercial interests,” Robert Hartwig, the institute’s president, said in an interview today. “It will take a while for the business owners to sort this out.”
The temblor, the strongest in Northern California in 25 years, hit the Napa region north of San Francisco at about 3:20 a.m. local time yesterday, crumpling historic buildings, cracking roads and injuring more than 200 people. The quake left many in the region without power and water, and California Governor Jerry Brown declared the zone a disaster area.
In Napa, debris and broken glass littered the sidewalks in front of restaurants, wine stores, and antique shops. The city updated the number of buildings “red-tagged” as being uninhabitable to 33, including the Napa Senior Center. PG&E Corp. crews checked about 100 reports of gas leaks and odor and determined that there are no more leaks, according to an update posted to the city’s website late yesterday.