Overall, there has been a significant increase in number of contractors receiving slip and fall reports from the commercial property owners they plow snow for. The property owners are becoming more aggressive with contract language in an attempt to pass these slip and fall incidents back to the snowplow contractor.
Insurance companies are monitoring this trend and have implemented stricter guidelines on general liability policies which include: coverage exclusions for snowplowing operations, adding the more expensive snowplow class code, and separating landscape labor from snowplow labor.
As your insurance program manager, The Flanders Group suggests that you:
- Consider how increased insurance premiums will impact your future snowplow contracts.
- Be selective of the customers you agree to perform snowplowing services for. If claims result from snowplowing operations, your general liability premium will likely increase.
- Insure that contracts you sign only hold you responsible if the terms of the service contract were not performed properly. This will minimize your exposure to risk.