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Province’s hail claims above average

Manitoba farmers filed over 3,500 insurance claims for hail damage during the 2008 growing season, which according to the Canadian Crop Hail Association is above the province’s five-year average.

Manitobans can expect about $16 million in paid-out claims for the $46 million they paid in premiums, making their average payout per claim “much lower” than those in Saskatchewan or Alberta, the Prairie hail insurers’ group said Oct. 24.

Albertans paid in $66.5 million and can expect to receive $98.6 million in payouts for a record year of over 4,800 hail claims, the group said. Saskatchewan will also set a new record for hail insurance payouts and total hail-damaged acres, receiving about $228 million to settle nearly 21,000 claims. Farmers in Saskatchewan paid in about $176.5 million in premiums.

Payouts in those provinces are expected to put “upward pressure” on their farmers’ hail premium rates in 2009, the group said.

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