Flood Exclusions – What’s your defence?

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According to Transform, the magazine for environment and sustainability professionals, “Climate change will see parts of northern Britain experience a larger increase in flooding than any other region in Europe, a first-of-its-kind study has revealed.” Where Flood Re has been created by the Government for the main purpose of insuring those existing properties in the highest exposed areas, where does this leave new construction sites? 

Although it could be argued that a construction site is less in reinstatement value than a completed property, a partly built property is often defenceless against the impact of flooding. If we consider at the point of the early stages of a construction project, the piling and foundations are considerably exposed, as water will head towards the hole created in the ground. 

As climate change continues to have an impact, we have seen considerable amounts of dry spells followed by heavy rainfall. These conditions result in a build up of surface water which can run into construction sites, causing issues to the plant and materials left on-site overnight and on weekends, without sufficient protection. 

This exposure is therefore increased considerably when building any large developments near watercourses where the foundations are dug below the current level of water. We are seeing old brownfield sites where rivers were key to the success of the business in previous times, now being converted into high, in-demand, large residential developments which use the view of such a watercourse as an appealing addition to their property. 

When dealing with large construction sites, flood exclusions and flood excesses are often a knee jerk reaction of underwriters. However, involving a broker and insurer early with the design team can help remove such exclusions and reduce excesses. Working in a tripartite arrangement, we can ease insurers’ concerns and at the same time help mitigate the flood exposures with Risk Management. 

Contact us today to discuss any projects upcoming where you may have such concerns: 

T: 0161 830 7556 

E: reichconstruction@reichinsurance.co.uk 

Tags: Construction | floods | Flooding