Slightly more than half of flood insurance policy holders in areas damaged by Katrina have filed claims, the Federal Emergency Management Agency said.
As of Monday, around 149,000 flood insurance claims had been made, said Ed Pasterick, a FEMA senior advisor of the flood insurance program litigation division.
Katrina was "a big storm," he told MortgageDaily.com. "We're just hoping we can expeditiously get to all these claims. But there's just so many and that makes it difficult."
Pasterick said there are approximately 271,000 total flood insurance policies in the areas affected by the hurricane.
Louisiana holds the most, with about 217,000 policies spread throughout the Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard and Plauqemines perishes, according to the senior advisor.
Alabama's Baldwin and Mobile counties constitute around 27,000 of the policies and Mississippi's counties of Hancock, Harrison and Jackson hold the other 27,000, he said.
The total number of structures in the impacted areas is difficult to assess, given that Census data determines the number of households and not structures, Pasterick said.
He pointed out, however, that research of structures located in high-hazard areas shows that about 60 percent of structures in the South have flood insurance, which is higher than other parts of the country and expected because the region is aware of its high level of water and storm activity.
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