Last week saw South Africa in the limelight following our Presidents Speech at SoNA 2022. Government is said to be fast-tracking regulations to allow the development of this budding industry. It is believed the Cannabis industry has a huge potential for creating job opportunities as well as assisting South Africa get back on track following the set back of the COVID-19 Pandemic. There is huge potential for Investors to get on board at this early stage to build a modern and economically viable large scale production hub. Beyond that, the opportunities that lie ahead for this unique product are endless. From a medical perspective as well as an industrial one, technology is now at a point where there are a variety of options.
The full Speech from President Cyril Ramaphosa can be read below.
You heard right. We here at Blue Anchor Risk Solutions are back at it and bringing new products to the market once again.
The Journey started 9 months back during a time of unrest and questions, when the Industry had a mini breakdown thanks to the COVID-19 Pandemic. What crazy person would have thought it a good time to come up with something new, fresh and innovative. The answer? Us of course.
With the world changing and new things happening a little idea has grown into a BLOOMING market. Yep that’s right, we at Blue Anchor have started the first and only comprehensive cover available in SA for Growers of medicinal Cannabis. We’re not stopping here, as the Cannabis Market grows so will our Product line, but to start we have our Cannabis Liability Cover in place.
Read all about it here in an Article written for Cover Magazine (April 2021) by our very own Ildiko Richardson, the brains behind the Madness.
Products Pollution coverage is a package liability product available to many manufacturers and distributors. A combination GL/Products/Product Pollution Liability policy includes Bodily Injury, Property Damage, and Clean Up coverage for third party claims. The Products Pollution coverage part can be provided by either a stand-alone policy or by endorsement to the GL and is available on a claims made basis.
Why is Products Pollution Insurance coverage important?
- It protects the insured against a product failure that may cause a pollution condition.
- Many General Liability and Product policies deny coverage for Bodily Injury/Property Damage and Defense arising from the discharge of pollutants from a product.
- Most General Liability and Product policies deny Clean Up coverage claims that stem from a pollution condition.
- Distributors may not find protection from the manufacturer. Especially if the manufacturer is domiciled overseas.
Products Pollution coverage enhancements to look for:
- Sudden/accidental spill coverage for the insured’s owned/leased premises.
- First and third party “over the road”/rail Transportation Pollution Liability
- Natural resources damage
- Loading/unloading pollution
- World wide protection
- Mould/indoor air quality coverage for the premises
- Blanket waiver of subrogation
- Waste stream pollution coverage at non-owned locations.
Who should buy Products Pollution coverage?
Classes of business typically needing Products Pollution coverage include:
- Industrial coatings: paints varnish, sealers, and inks
- Adhesives: glue, caulk, and plastics
- Aerosols: storage and filling paints
- Biodiesels: ethanol and alternative fuels
- Lubricants: grease and other lubes
- Plastics: pellets, injection molding, etc.
- Rubber: recycling, injection molding, etc.
- Industrial soaps
- Solvents and the raw materials used in the solvent process
- Products that carry, contain, measure, move, or otherwise process pollutants such as: drums, tanks, pipes, tubing, pumps, valves, and compressor, or other machinery/equipment.
Manufacturers and distributors of imported or domestic products should be covered in the event of a products pollution claim. Distributors selling products made in a foreign country may find that these countries will not defend insurance claims relating to products being sold in the Republic of South Africa.
The ongoing issues with insureds’ contract requirements force insurance professionals to push the envelope each and every day. Trying to keep up with a client’s needs can take a great deal of effort, and with pollution coverage becoming a very real issue for most business owners and operators, it is important to understand the differences in coverage forms. One major point to focus on is the important difference between Sudden & Accidental and Broad Form Contractors Pollution Liability.
Over the past twenty years, the insurance industry has provided Sudden & Accidental Pollution coverage to a variety of business classes. This coverage was meant to satisfy policy holders and property owners that were concerned with the potential for a pollution loss. Sudden & Accidental coverage is tied to a discovery and reporting period, and generally covers bodily injury and property damage caused by a pollution loss. The main issue with this fact is that if the loss happens over time or is not discovered or reported in the time allowed under the policy form, there is no coverage in place. Also, these forms tend to not have completed operations, action over, or clean-up costs included.
Over the last decade, we have all seen companies that have started to provide broad form Contractors Pollution Liability coverage to many of these same industries. The Contractors Pollution Liability form covers bodily injury, property damage, and clean up expenses. Most of these forms also include completed operations and action over coverage, allowing for a much broader policy and giving real coverage to the insureds and their certificate holders. These policies are written on a claims-made basis and the discovery and reporting period are tied to the policy term.
With the environmental departments continually growing and issues like the BP offshore incident, your insureds have a greater need to protect themselves from Pollution exposures and threats. Property owners, contract holders, and certificate requests are going to continue to ask for Pollution coverage and higher limits with broader terms. This is going to put more pressure on insurance brokers to provide for these needs and to make sure the gaps in their clients’ insurance programs are covered. This can be done with a simple standalone Contractors Pollution Liability policy that can also include Products Pollution Liability, Transportation Pollution Liability, and some Site Specific coverage.
Always remember that when your insured is on a third party’s site, they are exposed to environmental risk they may not generate. We cannot anticipate who an insured will work for or what conditions they may be dealing with in their daily operations. Accidents can happen, and with one simple insurance policy, you can remove the worry over the total or absolute pollution exclusion on the General Liability policy. We have to remember that thinking outside the box and providing expertise are the main reasons the insured pays his or her insurance agent. In order to protect both the client and the brokers organization, it is crucial to be educated on environmental exposures and the forms that address them.
Sudden & Accidental coverage is tied to a discovery and reporting period, and generally covers bodily injury and property damage caused by a pollution loss. If a claim comes in and is a gradual loss or is not discovered and reported in the time allowed under the policy form, there is no coverage in place.
Through the years, the term “Sudden & Accidental” pollution has been litigated vigorously and there has been much debate about the meaning of Sudden and Accidental versus a Non-Sudden and Gradual (gradual) pollution event. A classic example of the complexity of this issue involves the circumstance where an area of a site has staining, and the cause of the staining has been determined to be a leak from a pipe. A question is posed as to whether the staining was caused by a sudden and accidental event or a gradual event. If one believes that it is a result of a sudden and accidental event – is it because the event was the first drop (and everything subsequent to that was the same occurrence)?
Conversely, was the staining the result of a non-sudden & gradual, consistent stream of drops over time? Even if it was determined that the stain was a result of a gradual release, shouldn’t the first drop be considered an sudden and accidental event and therefore, some amount of the staining would fall into the sudden and accidental category? There are many opinions that one might have with regard to this simple example and this is only a glimpse of how complicated this debate became.
What is the difference between Sudden & Accidental Coverage vs. Non-Sudden and Gradual Coverage?
The word “sudden” had been litigated extensively in many courts, and was initially interpreted to mean “unexpected”, rather than “quick”. The word “accidental” was often interpreted as “unintended”. This broad interpretation of sudden and accidental, i.e., “unexpected and unintended”, rather than “quick”, resulted in many court decisions that were advantageous to the insured because of the fact that the unclear interpretation of the words resulted in ambiguities.
Over time, this broad, ambiguous interpretation of sudden and accidental became narrower. In recent years, sudden and accidental has been interpreted to mean that it takes place in its entirety at a specific time and place. Insureds may have difficulty demonstrating that a pollution condition or release of pollutants was sudden and took place at a specific time.
Many, but not all, environmental insurance policies provide coverage for both sudden and accidental and gradual pollution releases. There is no distinction between one or the other in most environmental insurance forms. With gradual coverage in place, the insured does not have to be concerned about meeting the reporting requirements outlined in the time element trigger, or the potential ambiguity of older sudden and accidental forms.
Non-sudden and gradual coverage in premises specific forms is not without its issues as well. It is important for insureds to understand the difference between “unknown” pre-existing conditions and “new” conditions. Sudden & Accidental is typically a coverage enhancement on a Contractors Pollution Liability, Site specific Pollution Liability or a combined/Package Pollution Liability policy for a client that demonstrates the need for the covers due to the nature of their business which could create an Environmental risk due to their business activities.