Japanese insurance giant Tokio Marine & Nichido
says it will start using satellite images for its flood damage assessments. The aim is to speed up compensation payouts.
Officials at the non-life insurer say the move is an industry-first for Japan, NHK reported.
The satellite operation is set to to be launched soon. It will be a joint venture among Tokio Marine & Nichido, a US firm and other businesses.
Officials at the insurer say the images will be analysed by artificial intelligence, which can automatically calculate flood depths. Other data will include ground elevation and water flows around damaged property.
Under the new system, if a flood is measured at 45cm or higher, the insurer will process claims without dispatching assessors to check the property. The simplified process will allow payouts to be made in days.
An increasing number of storms and heavy rains have battered Japan in recent years. Property owners say on-site assessments can be time-consuming, requiring waiting times of more than a month for payouts.