U.S. Estimates Hurricane Matthew Damage to Recreational Boats at $110M

February 20, 2017

Hurricane Matthew, which threatened four coastal states as it corkscrewed through the Atlantic in early October, caused an estimated $110 million in damage to recreational boats, according to Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS). The national safety organization suggests that in addition to the storm remaining offshore, boaters and the marine industry had a hand in lessening the damage.

In contrast, more than 65,000 recreational boats were damaged or lost as a result of Hurricane Sandy, according to BoatUS, resulting in damage estimated around $650 million.

“The storm moved slowly, so everyone had plenty of early warning and time to prepare. We believe that helped keep boat damage down,” said BoatUS Vice President of Public Affairs Scott Croft.

In a previous statement, BoatUS reported that while there were some localized areas of dock destruction and boat losses, damage to recreational boats as a result of Hurricane Matthew was not widespread. “Damage turned out to be less than anticipated because the storm’s wall stayed offshore, but I’d also like to think boaters played a part as well in reducing damage,” Croft said.

When a boat is in the path of a NOAA-named storm and a hurricane watch or warning is posted, a BoatUS insured is eligible for 50 percent of the cost of labor, up to $1,000, to have the boat professionally hauled out, prepared and tied down by professionals. If the boat cannot be hauled, the coverage also includes hiring the services of a paid captain to move the boat to a protected “hurricane hole.”

W.R. Berkley Suspends Marine Underwriting in London: Sources

W.R. Berkley has put under review and is suspending underwriting for its London marine book until it can determine the direction of this business going forward.

W/R/B Underwriting, the company’s Lloyd’s managing agent, is suspending its $30 million marine book, which has underwritten marine hull and cargo, marine liability and marine war.

W/R/B Underwriting will continue to underwrite property, specialty casualty, aviation, accident & health, engineering & construction, crisis management and asset protection, market sources confirmed.

Overall capacity for W/R/B Underwriting during 2017 is $280 million.

Poor marine results have been common across the Lloyd’s market, and sources suggest that W/R/B Underwriting is undertaking rigorous cycle management by suspending underwriting for its marine book.

As is common in such business moves, sources indicate that the company will honor all quotes and claims for its marine book. W.R. Berkley would not comment on its plans for the business.

An indication of W/R/B Underwriting’s ongoing commitment to its Lloyd’s business is its recent appointment of Miriam Goddard as director of underwriting for specialty casualty. She will join the company from Hiscox, where she has been head of professions since 2013. In previous years, she was senior liability underwriter at Jubilee Managing Agency Ltd., an errors and omissions underwriter at Brockbank Managing Agency and an underwriter at Lexington Insurance Co., according to her LinkedIn profile.

W/R/B Underwriting was established in 2015 by uniting W.R. Berkley Syndicate 1967 with the U.K. and Irish branches of W.R. Berkley Insurance (Europe) Ltd., under a single brand, said the company’s LinkedIn page.

Brit Launches Lutine Yacht Consortium with Capacity of $250M

Brit Ltd., the London-based specialty insurer, announced the launch of a new Lloyd’s consortium for yachts, called the Lutine Yacht Consortium.

The consortium has a capacity of $250 million, offering 100 percent Lloyd’s security to insure motor and sailing vessels valued at more than $10 million. The consortium also offers worldwide coverage, has global reach through Lloyd’s brokers and their agents and clients will be supported by a 24/7 claims service.

Anthony Forsyth, divisional director at Brit Global Specialty, said, “We are pleased to have Brit launch and lead this new yacht consortium, which will further strengthen our leading marine offering. By combining Brit’s ability to deliver innovative solutions with a tailored approach to each policy, we are confident this consortium builds on our focus for delivering service. Furthermore, our global network of surveyors and claims professionals will enable us to give immediate and local solutions to clients in the event of a claim.”

Matthew Wilson, Brit Group CEO, commented: “Marine is a key line for Brit, and I’m delighted that we have been able to further enhance our client offering in the space through the launch of this consortium. Not only does this deliver on our strategy to build our presence in markets where we believe Brit brings a compelling proposition, but it also underscores our commitment to creating appealing client solutions through innovation in specialty areas where we already bring considerable expertise.”

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Insurance Journal West February 20, 2017
February 20, 2017
Insurance Journal West Magazine

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