Wildfire Claims Reach Staggering Total

May 12, 2019

Firefighters discuss plans while battling the Carr Fire in Shasta Calif. on July 26,2018.
Credit Noah Berger / AP Photo

California’s epic November wildfires were the deadliest and most destructive ever recorded, and the total in dollars keeps rising. 



More than twelve billion dollars. That’s the new estimated total of insured losses that occurred in California last November alone, as devastating wildfires swept through Butte, Los Angeles and Ventura counties.  



The figure comes from State Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara, and represents totals from the Camp, Hill and Woolsey fires, which all struck in November — unusually late in the year. 


When claims associated with major blazes that occurred earlier last year, such as the Carr, Delta and Hirz fires, the total exceeds $13 billion. The true loss is vastly higher as many fire victims were uninsured or under-insured 


In Butte County, 12,047 claims filed last year were ruled total losses. A further 928 Shasta County claims were likewise ruled a total loss.  


The state insurance commissioner’s website has information that could help consumers understand what is and isn’t covered under what circumstances, depending on policy terms.