Gallagher has been ACAPMA’s insurance partner for more than 40 years. As a specialist broker for the fuel industry and convenience stores sector, Gallagher handles a large number of claims which can serve as reminder to other businesses in the industry of the risks they face on a daily basis.

Gallagher’s latest incident report features some major claims events and trends that are relevant to businesses of all sizes right across the sector.

Incident report June 2019

1. A disturbing trend is the recent incidence of attempts to set service stations on fire. There have been two in New South Wales and now a third in Queensland on the Gold Coast. The damage from this fire was significant but contained and at this stage it is not clear whether the customer started the blaze accidentally or with malicious intent.

2. The recent minor earthquake in Darwin has caused some damage however a more serious tremor could cause major damage to fuel industry infrastructure.

3. The trailer and prime mover were written off but the driver escaped with injury after a tanker rolled into a creek bed in southern NSW.  A significant loss was contained and the recovery procedure, a focus of recent criticism by the authorities, was accomplished within an appropriately swift time frame.

4. In sad news that no insurance professional ever wants to hear, a fatality resulted from a collision between a tanker and a car in South Australia. At this point the cause of the accident remains unknown.

CURRENT ISSUES

Cyber alert

At Gallagher we have been receiving increasing numbers of reports of cyber ransom claims where fuel distribution businesses have been held to ransom after their IT systems have been hacked and disabled. There have been more of these in past couple of months than in the whole of the previous year. Insurers have had to make the call on the worth of meeting ransom demands, given the amount tends to be minor compared to the value of business lost during suspended operations.

Environmental accountability

Environmental Protection Authority authorities are escalating scrutiny of transport clients’ emergency plans, issuing show cause notices and threats of harsh penalties. Businesses must make sure their response plans are up to date and compliant. Gallagher’s industry experts can help with these. They must be functional, especially if the business has had an incident previously.

There is also EPA focus on wet stock management with regard to SIRA monitoring capabilities and effectiveness, where there is dissatisfaction with recorded readings.

Shrinking capacity

In the tightening insurance market providers are refusing to participate in several categories, which include the construction industry, recycling and alternative fuel facilities in reaction to the discovery of unsafe buildings, Asian markets refusing our waste and a narrow view of acceptable risk presented by bio-diesel plants, for example.

Potential supply problems

Australia has approximately 70% dependence on imported fuels and due to inadequate storage and facilities closures there is only about a 20 day reserve supply of fuel stock, which makes global events such as sabotage of tankers in the Oman Channel and two major refinery fires in Europe and the US of particular concern to local businesses. Gallagher is maintaining a watching brief.

Get advice

We have seen an uptick in disgruntled employees bringing wrongful dismissal claims for legitimate terminations and advise our clients to run your case past us at Gallagher before you take action against an unsatisfactory staff member. We will have our lawyers check it for you.

If you need advice on risk management and insurance for your business, contact Gallagher on 1800 571 941or visit ajg.com.au/transport to request more information on their range of insurance solutions for the sector.