Welcome back to the Aviation Insurance Blog!
Aerial application insurance policies contain a lot of the same exclusions that a standard aircraft policy has. This includes coverages such as War Risk and Allied Perils, Nuclear, Pollution (other than pollution resulting from an occurrence or crash), etc. However, there are some exclusions that are unique to aerial applicators’ insurance policies. Fortunately, there are typically a write-back endorsement available though it could be for additional premium.
Some other key exclusions and endorsements to note include the following:
- EXCLUSION: There is no coverage for any claims arising out of the aerial application to rights-of-way or easements for public or quasi-public persons or bodies, waterways, railroads, pipelines or utility companies. ENDORSEMENT: A Rights-Of-Way write-back endorsement is available to be added to a policy.
- EXCLUSION: There is no coverage for any claims arising out of the aerial application to any residential area. ENDORSEMENT: A Residential Areas write-back endorsement is available to be added to a policy. In general, this is important with mosquito and gypsy moth control applications.
- EXCLUSION: There is no coverage for any claims while the aircraft is used for smoke or fi re patrol, firefighting or control or any activity in support of those uses. ENDORSEMENT: Several Wildfire Control, Fire Fighting and Fire Patrol endorsements are available.
- EXCLUSION: There is no coverage for any claims arising out of the aerial application of herbicides or Glyphosate to forests, woods, timberlands, or tree farms. ENDORSEMENT: A write-back endorsement may be permitted in certain situations.
- EXCLUSION: There is no coverage if the aircraft is leased, rented, or loaned to anyone other than the Named Insured.
- EXCLUSION: There is no coverage for any claims arising out of the aerial application involving two or more aircraft owned or operated by the Named Insured, unless all aircraft involved in the same occurrence are insured by the same insurance company for the same Chemical Category.
- EXCLUSION: There is no coverage for any type of pollution, including noise and environmental. ENDORSEMENT: Separate Environmental Pollution Liability policies are available.
- EXCLUSION: There is no coverage for any claims that are designed to be covered by Workers’ Compensation or Employment Practices. Separate policies are available for purchase for these exposures.
A few insurance companies may limit the coverage territory for chemical applications to the state of domicile and adjacent states. Operators that spray outside this territory should have the policy endorsed (if necessary) to include any other states in which they spray.
There are minimum limits of liability required by most states. However, the most common limits on aerial application policies are $100,000 each person, $300,000 each occurrence for bodily injury and $100,000 each occurrence for property damage. These limits apply to both Non-Chemical (Aircraft) Liability and Chemical Liability. There are higher and lower limits available in many circumstances. Chemical Liability limits of $300,000-$500,000 each occurrence (and potentially higher) may be available in many situations. Non-Chemical (Aircraft) Liability limits of $1,000,000 and $2,000,000 each occurrence are often purchased to satisfy contracts. Most policies will have aggregate (total) limits for bodily injury and property damage on the policy. These aggregate limits may vary by policy (often depending on how many aircraft are on a policy) so it’s important to make sure you know your aggregate limit.
While this information gives you some of the basic information about agricultural aviation application liability coverage, by no means does it cover every detail, coverage, and exclusion of the policy. As always, please read your policy. There are other liability policies not discussed here that your operation may need, such as General Liability and other business liability policies. Please visit with your aviation insurance agent to make sure you have the proper coverages to meet your operation’s needs.