Alaska Ship Chandler Insurance Policy Information
Alaska Ship Chandler Insurance. Ship chandelling services are unique businesses that are dedicated to supplying ships with all the goods they may need, often at extremely short notice.
A ship chandler specializes in providing goods and services to commercial seagoing vessels and their crews. The chandler sells products from its own stock and coordinates the delivery of goods and services from others.
The ship chandler sells goods used for the ongoing maintenance and upkeep of the ship while at sea, such as canvas, cleaning supplies, hand pumps, hand tools, hemp, paint, pesticides, pitch, ropes, tar, and varnish.
They also sell clothing, food, and personal supplies to the crew. Services such as cleaning, laundry, mail, medical services or land transportation may be arranged. Engineering, recertification, security, and fuel services may also be provided.
As ships may be docked for a very short period of time, fast turnaround time is critical, so ship chandlers must be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Deliveries can be made by truck or by boat.
For this reason, chip chandlers play an absolutely vital role for many commercial long-haul ship crews, who find in their chandler a reliable one-stop shop to meet all their needs.
If you own and manage a ship chandelling agency, or are considering opening a business of this type, you'll know that this field is an exciting and highly-rewarding one.
Since ship chandlers also face numerous risks, however, it is essential to protect your business from financial hardship with excellent insurance. What types of Alaska ship chandler insurance coverage are needed? Discover more in this guide.
Alaska ship chandler insurance protects your operation from lawsuits with rates as low as $47/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Why Do AK Ship Chandlers Need Insurance?
Ship chandlers are in a unique branch of commerce, but just like any other business, they face a multitude of threats. Both universal risks and industry-specific hazards can have devastating financial consequences.
Not all perils can be prevented, but a comprehensive insurance plan can give you the peace of mind that you only get when you know your business is shielded from sudden costs.
Your facility could be damaged in an act of nature - like an earthquake, hurricane, or severe storm. Vandalism, theft, or accidents like fires could ravage your office space and its contents. An employee could sustain an injury over the course of their job, and depending on the circumstances, you may be liable.
Vendors, clients, and other third parties may file a lawsuit against your company, leading to exorbitant costs. Should a part you supply to a ship turn out to be faulty, you could be held responsible even though your company did not manufacture the part.
These examples of scenarios that may befall a ship chandler despite every effort to provide the best service explain why it is absolutely essential to assess your insurance needs meticulously. With the right Alaska ship chandler insurance coverage, your costs will be minimized. Your AK ship chandelling service will be able to recover from the peril and continue to thrive.
What Type Of Insurance Do Alaska Ship Chandlers Need?
Ship chandlers will need to invest in a range of insurance policies. Factors that include the jurisdiction in which your business is based, the value of your assets, your number of employees, and the types of ships you cater to, will all influence your precise insurance needs.
A commercial insurance broker who is deeply familiar with your field of industry is best placed to offer you advice tailored to your risk profile - in turn, making sure your ship chandelling agency is optimally insured. With that said, this is a look at some of the core types of Alaska ship chandler insurance within your industry:
- Commercial Property - This form of coverage will shield you from the financial consequences of disasters like acts of nature, accidents, theft, and vandalism, which inflict damage on your office space and its contents. Added business interruption insurance helps you recover some of the lost revenue you will also face.
- General Liability - If a third party were to be injured within your facility, or due to your company's activities, this type of Alaska ship chandler insurance covers legal defense fees and settlement costs associated with lawsuits that arise from these incidents.
- Errors And Omissions - This kind of professional liability insurance serves the purpose of covering your legal costs in case your ship chandelling service faces allegations of professional negligence or misconduct.
- Workers' Compensation - Federally mandated for companies with employees in most states, workers' compensation insurance covers the medical bills and any lost income for any employee who is injured while at work.
- Commercial Auto And Marine - Ship chandlers may deliver goods to ships by boat or by truck. Commercial vehicles need to be protected with commercial auto insurance, while ships are covered by marine insurance. Should an accident, theft, act of vandalism, or other covered peril damage your vehicle or ship or cause occupants and third parties to be injured, the costs are covered.
While these examples of essential Alaska ship chandler insurance will cover you in the event of many common perils, your business may need to carry other types of insurance as well. To learn more, speak to a commercial insurance broker.
AK Ship Chandler's Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposure is high due to the number of visitors to the shop. To prevent slips and falls, aisles must be adequate and free of debris. All goods should be kept on easily reached shelves so that customers do not pull items down upon themselves.
Flooring should be in good condition with no frayed or worn spots on carpet and no cracks or holes in flooring. Steps and uneven floor surfaces should be prominently marked. Enough exits must be provided and be well marked with backup lighting systems in case of power failure.
Parking lots and sidewalks need to be in good repair with snow and ice removed, and generally level and free of exposure to slips and falls. If the business is open after dark, there should be adequate lighting and security appropriate to the area. There should be a disaster plan in place for unexpected emergencies.
Employees making deliveries to ships can present a property damage exposure. Contractual liability is a major exposure because the chandler is often the coordinator of goods and services and not the direct supplier.
Certificates of insurance and contracts with vendors should be obtained.
Personal injury exposures include allegations of discrimination and from apprehending and detaining shoplifters, which may result in claims of assault and battery, false arrest or detention, unauthorized or intrusive searches, or wrongful ejection from the premises.
Shoplifting procedures must be fully understood and utilized by all employees.
Products liability exposure is normally low unless items are directly imported. Foreign-made items should come from a domestic-based wholesaler. Any direct importer should be considered as a product manufacturer.
Environmental impairment exposure can be high due to the potential for air, land or water pollution from the mixture of paints, disposal of pesticides, used oil, degreasers, solvents, and batteries.
Workers compensation exposures are moderate due to employees standing for long hours, the use of computers, and restocking which requires lifting and placing items on shelves. Continual standing can result in musculoskeletal disorders of the back, legs, or feet.
Trips, slips, and falls are common. When work is done on computers, employees are exposed to eyestrain, neck strain, and repetitive motion injuries including carpal tunnel syndrome. Lifting can cause back injury, hernias, sprains, and strains.
Employees should be provided with safety equipment, trained on proper handling techniques, and have conveying devices available to assist with heavy lifting.
Housekeeping in storage areas, especially during peak times, is vital in preventing trips and falls. Cleaning workers can develop respiratory ailments or contact dermatitis from working with chemicals.
In any retail business, hold-ups may occur. Employees should be trained to respond in a prescribed manner. Drivers of delivery trucks can be injured in accidents.
Employees who load items onto the dock or the ship may fall into the water and drown or be hit by overhead cranes or other equipment. Coverage for maritime exposures can be purchases under the U.S. Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act.
Property exposures are high due to large amounts of combustible materials stored on premises and multiple ignition sources. All wiring must be well maintained and meet current codes for the occupancy.
Some stock is perishable and susceptible to damage by fire, smoke and water. Flammables used for repair or held for sale must be properly stored, separated, and controlled.
High-value items such as specialized navigation equipment may be targeted by thieves. Appropriate security measures must be taken including physical barriers to prevent entrance to the premises after hours and an alarm system that reports directly to a central station or the police department.
Business income and equipment breakdown exposures are high as sales of goods and services are time-sensitive and backup facilities may not be readily available.
Crime exposures are from employee dishonesty and theft of money and securities either from holdup or safe burglary. Background checks should be conducted on all employees handling money. There must be a separation of duties between persons handling deposits and disbursements and reconciling bank statements.
Money should be regularly collected from cash drawers and moved away from the collection area, preferably to a safe on premises.
Inland marine exposures are from accounts receivable as goods and services purchased are billed to the ship's owner, computers to transact sales and monitor inventory, goods in transit for purchases made to customers, and valuable papers and records for vendors' and customers' information.
Backup copies of all records, including computer files, should be made and stored off premises. Contractors' equipment coverage may be needed if forklifts are used in the warehouse.
Business auto exposure can be high due to the need for prompt delivery services. Docks and piers may be congested, increasing the potential for an accident. Vehicles may overturn or fall into the water.
Anyone who uses an owned vehicle must have a valid license and acceptable MVR. Vehicles should have regular maintenance with records kept.
Alaska Ship Chandler Insurance - The Bottom Line
To learn more about the types of Alaska ship chandler insurance policies you should consider, how much coverage you should have and the associated premiums - speak with a reputable broker that is experienced in commercial insurance.
Alaska Economic Data, Regulations And Limits On Commercial Insurance
If you're an entrepreneur who is thinking about starting a business in Alaska, it's important to have a basic understanding of the state's overall economy before you set up shop. Regardless of how high-quality the products and services you are planning on offering may be, if the location where you open your organization doesn't offer a target market that your products and services will appeal to, chances of success are slim. Furthermore, if a workforce isn't available to support your business, you'll have a hard time staying afloat.
With that said, it's important for business-minded individuals who are thinking about starting a company in Alaska to familiarize themselves with the state's economy; it's also a good idea to have an understanding of the commercial insurance requirements.
Following is an overview of economic trends and commercial insurance policies that business owners are required to carry in The Last Frontier.
Economic Trends For Business Owners In Alaska
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate in Alaska was 6.1% in December of 2019. While that's significantly higher than the national unemployment rate, which was 3.4% in December, 2019, it's lower than it was one year prior, when the rate of unemployment was 6.5% in December of 2018. Though the workforce is growing slower than it is in other states, economists do predict that the rate will continue to decline in the coming years.
Despite Alaska's remoteness and cold climate, it's actually a great start to start a business. According to the Tax Foundation, Alaska is the second most tax-friendly state for business owners in the United States, as there's no individual income tax or state sales tax. Additionally, Alaska has the second highest rate of new business owners, as well as the second highest percentage of available employees (as per 2016).
As in most states, the best spots to start a business in Alaska are the state's biggest cities and the surrounding areas. This includes Anchorage, Juneau, and Fairbanks. Other key areas that are seeing a boost in business development in recent years include Homer, Sitka, Prudhoe Bay, and Ketchikan.
While there are several industries that are experiencing growth in The Last Frontier, specific sectors thrive more than others. Businesses that are related to the following industries are booming in AK:
- Fishing, which is also one of the largest contributors to the state's economy.
- Mining, which provides more than 4,500 jobs in Alaska.
- Petroleum, which is responsible for 34% of jobs in the state. In fact, Prudhoe Bay is North America's largest oil field.
- Tourism is the second largest private sector employer in the state. Each year, millions of people from around the globe travel to Alaska to marvel at the numerous natural wonders that can be found here.
Commercial Insurance Requirements In Alaska
The Alaska Division of Insurance regulates insurance in AK. Alaska mandates very few forms of insurance coverage by law. They enforce worker's compensation.
Alaska requires you to have worker's compensation insurance if you hire even one employee on a regular basis. This includes part-time employees, family members, minors, and immigrant employees. It is not required for independent contractors or domestic employees, though you should check to make sure any contractors you have are true contractors, and not employees.
Alaska also requires all business-owned vehicles to be covered by commercial auto insurance. Other types of business insurance that business owners should carry depend on the specific industry.
Additional Resources For Marine, Boat And Watercraft Insurance
Learn about marine, boat and watercraft insurance - a specialized form insurance that provides coverage for hull losses, cargo losses as well as liability for passenger injuries, environmental damage, and third-party damage caused by watercraft accidents.
- Insurance Nautical Terms Glossary
- Boat Dealers
- Boat Repair & Dry Docks
- Dock & Pier Contractors
- Dredging Contractors
- Ocean Marine
- Ship Chandlers
- Boat & Watercraft Insurance
Marine insurance covers everything from loss of cargo to damage to the vessel, terminals, etc. Cargo ships are provided protection against potential losses, especially in transit, which is ideally suited to shipping companies and couriers who want to ensure that they are protected while transporting goods.
Businesses in the shipping industry and those who own private yachts/boats understand that it is nearly impossible to control natural occurrences despite the current safety regulations and laws. Factors like encounters with pirates, weather hazards, conflicts are all too common and can result in damages that cause ship owners to incur lots of damages.
A marine insurance policy can ensure that ship, boat, and yacht owners' interests are protected, offering financial coverage to ensure that they are protected against potential losses.
The other excellent feature of current marine insurance policies is that they can be customized to specific trades, which means that they can cater to varying coverage requirements. The policies can offer coverage based on the size of the ship and the routes being taken.
Types Of Marine Insurance
As mentioned earlier, marine insurance is a broad term that applies to a large group of coverages and is meant to offer protection against damages and losses. Generally, you'll run into three common marine insurance types that provide varying protections.
Hull Insurance - When your ship, boat, or yacht has hull insurance, it is protected from all physical damages along with machinery and equipment. The policy covers all water vessels but is limited to primary commercial ocean vessels. That's why this isn't the best policy for vessels like floating equipment, tugboats, barges and oil rights, or any other type of vessel which does not have commercial intent, so to speak.
Cargo Insurance - Again, this marine insurance coverage is for physical damage to the cargo a commercial vessel may be carrying. However, the coverage and the conditions may vary; for instance, there are policies that offer theft protection, and then there are others that cover other forms of losses apart from physical damage.
Marine Liability Insurance - Now this policy is often referred to as P&I or also protection and indemnity. The coverage offers protection from third-party liabilities that owners and businesses may be exposed to during operations. It also includes coverage for illnesses and injuries while also covering loss of life when the vessel is operational. If there are medical expenditures, damage to the vessels, collision incidents, then; as a result, the quarantine is also covered.
Finally, the premium for marine insurance is mainly based on a couple of factors like the type of vessel, age of the vessel, trading and tonnage, management and ownership, and valuation of the ship, amongst various other factors.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Building, Business Personal Property, Business Income and Extra Expense, Employee Dishonesty, Money and Securities, Accounts Receivable, Bailees Customers, Computers, Contractors' Equipment, Mobile Equipment, Valuable Papers and Records, Ocean Marine – Hull, Ocean Marine – Protection and Indemnity, General Liability, Employee Benefits Liability, Environmental Impairment, Umbrella, Hired and Non-Owned Auto & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Earthquake, Flood, Burglary, Computer Fraud, Forgery, Robbery, Goods in Transit, Signs, Ocean Marine - Hull, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices, Liquor Liability, Ocean Marine - Protection and Indemnity, Business Automobile Liability and Physical Damage, Longshore and Harborworkers Compensation Act and Stop Gap Liability.
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Also find AK local small businesses by General Liability Class Code and learn about Alaska small business insurance requirements for general liability, business property, commercial auto & workers compensation including AK business insurance costs. Call us (907) 531-9001.