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Why do contractors need transportation pollution liability insurance?

56450767 - environmentalist taking sample of polluted waterAny contractor who transports materials that could potentially create environmental pollution needs liability protection. When cargo is released into the environment — for example, a truck overturns and spills industrial cleaning solution into a stream — the contractor is legally liable for the contamination. Transportation pollution liability insurance provides protection for transport of materials, including loading and unloading of cargo.

Transportation pollution liability can occur in a number of ways. Contractors traveling to and from jobsites can be involved in a collision which releases contaminants onto roadways. When this occurs, the contractor may be responsible for damages to a third party’s vehicle and for the remediation costs of cleaning up the spill.

Additionally, an environmental spill can involve many hundreds of gallons of contaminants, such as a cargo spill of motor oil. The oil is released not only onto the roadway but also into a nearby stream. The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) deploys an emergency response team for remediation and also conducts an investigation of the impact of the spill on any surrounding residential areas, soil and water impact, and any future monitoring costs. The cost of the environmental spill could total several hundred thousand dollars.

Most commercial general liability (CGL) and commercial auto policies exclude coverage for transportation pollution liability when the “transported materials” are transported to locations beyond the boundaries of the jobsite. Without the proper transportation pollution liability insurance, the remediation costs of a spill could potentially put a small environmental contractor out of business.

C & S Specialty Underwriters specializes in liability insurance for contractors. We offer transportation pollution liability insurance as a part of the specialty liability product packages we provide for general contractors, artisan contractors, environmental consultants, and other environmental risks. Coverage is available in all states with primary limits as low as $100,000 and as high as $5 million per occurrence and $5 million aggregate. Contact us to discuss complete liability coverage for your contractor clients.