At Plan Insurance Brokers we take pride in providing our Commercial Insurance customers with the up to date risk management information relating to their industries’. For that reason we will continue to create our Commercial Series blogs, this week we look at Risk Summary and Cover Checklists for Plumbing Contractors.
Description of operations
Plumbing contractors install water supplies, gas utilities, sewer connections, appliances, sprinklers, and irrigation systems with plumbing and pipe. Other services that a plumbing contractor may provide include retail sales of hardware and even appliances, as well as kitchen and bathroom remodelling.
The contractor’s property exposures are determined by the work he performs on the work site. Some contractors have their own piping fabrication facilities, thus cutting and welding are done there. Fire risks are likely to be considerable in those situations. Welding is exposed to gas storage tanks, which must be handled carefully to avoid loss. Welding activities need to be well-controlled. Is there a cut-off area or flash and welding curtains to isolate the welding activities from the other operations?
Other fire hazards include the storage and cutting of piping and fixtures, which may be made of plastic and expose people to harmful gases in the event of a fire. Adhesives used in plastic plumbing and piping may be combustible. Good controls are required while handling and storing flammables. If cars and equipment are repaired within the structure, the risk of fire is substantially larger. If stockpiles of expensive metals such as copper or brass are kept at both their facility and job sites, theft can be a significant risk.
At the job site, public liability is a problem. When removing existing plumbing and pipe and installing new, contractors risk causing damage to the customer’s property. There’s also the risk of physical harm to customers. Any employee who will have regular interaction with clients should undergo a background check.
Completed Operations Exposures
If the plumbing or piping is not installed properly, leaks or water damage might occur, resulting in completed operations exposures. Property damage could be severe as a result of this. Leaking sewage from improper sewer connections can lead to the spread of bacteria and disease, as well as significant property damage.
The extent of motor liability is determined by the operating radius. The drivers’ age, training, experience, and records, as well as the cars’ age, condition, and maintenance, are all crucial factors to examine.
Employers’ Liability Exposures
The liability liabilities of employers differ depending on the plumbing task. Both at the plumber’s facility and on the job site, burns from welding might occur. Welding in small, restricted spaces exposes workers to more fire, fumes, and vapours. Cutting piping and plumbing can result in cuts and amputations. The adhesives’ fumes and vapours might irritate the eyes, skin, and lungs. The importance of ventilation cannot be overstated. Potential losses from digging and trenching could arise if the contractor undertakes any excavation to connect to utilities or install sprinklers and irrigation systems.
Contractor plant and equipment, items in transit, and contract works are among the other risks. Contractors’ plant and equipment is usually confined to their employees’ tools, although for specific jobs, equipment might be hired, leased, or borrowed. There is a goods in transit exposure to consider if the insured is involved in selling the product to be installed. The contract works exposure exists when items are placed over a period of time and must be examined. The job site’s security is an important consideration.