Many businesses operate a fork lift truck but for some reason we find it is almost always insured incorrectly. In the event of a claim this may cost a business a considerable amount of money.
So what should you do?
1) Firstly ascertain if your fork lift truck is owned, hired or leased. If owned see step 2. If leased you need to insure to the requirements of your leasing company. If hired, what conditions are you hiring under? The normal conditions are CPA (Contractors Plant Association). Your insurers will grant an indemnity policy based on the total annual hiring charges. Be aware some hirers have been known to put the figure of replacement value in the contract of hire but insurers will only settle on current value (indemnity). Do not agree to this type of contract. It is also important to include in the policy, loss of hiring charges as you will still be charges until the claim is fully settled.
2) Make sure you cover the fork lift truck under your commercial insurance policy. The sum insured should represent the REPLACEMENT cost and not the 2nd hand value. If you do wish to cover the fork lift truck for the 2nd hand value, make sure your insurers are aware! Failure to do this will render you underinsured.
3) Do you operate the fork lift truck in or around the vicinity of a car park or road? You must have road risks cover. Business public liability will, in 99% of policies, exclude motorised plant. If you drive into a vehicle or hit a person, you will not be covered. Road risk policies are very cheap and essential, failing that do you have fleet insurance? You should have no problems placing the fork lift truck on your fleet policy. If your broker has not mentioned this before ask them why?
4) Under current legislation all lifting plant has to be inspected annually and a certificate issued (some plant is more frequent). This may be carried out by the company who service your fork lift truck, however if this is not the case or you do not receive a certificate, you insurers can carry out the inspection for you.
5) Breakdown cover – if your fork lift truck suffers a mechanical breakdown, insurance cover is available to pick up the cost.
6) Lifted goods cover – If goods are being lifted and are dropped, for example, due to a pallet splitting and damage occurs to the goods, cover can be in place to take care of this type of situation.
7) Own surrounding property – If damage occurs due to use of the fork lift truck to your own property, again cover can be in place.