Sewer Contractors Insurance Policy Information
Sewer Contractors Insurance. While it isn't exactly the most desirable topic of conversation, sewers are exceptionally important. They hold all of the waste water produced within residential, commercial, and industrial properties.
Whenever water - and anything else that it contains - is flushed down a drain, it runs through a system of pipes that connect to a sewer. Needless to say, there are a number of things that can go wrong with a sewer; the pipes can become clogged, they can overflow, and they can sustain damage.
Sewer contractors construct, install, maintain, repair, and replace sewer lines and the hookup of residential or commercial buildings to those lines. Operations consist of excavating trenches, laying the sewer lines into the trenches, connecting the piping together, then filling in the trench with dirt or other materials.
The sewer lines from individual buildings or residences, often already laid by general plumbers, are then hooked up to the sewer system. Sewer lines move solid or liquid waste products to residential septic systems or to municipal waste treatment centers.
Because sewers are so important, as a contractor who services and installs new sewers, your job is essential. When property owners experience issues with their sewers, they rely on your expertise to correct the issue and get their system back up and running.
Given the nature of the profession, sewer contractors are exposed to a variety of risks. In order to protect yourself from those risks, investing in the right type of sewer contractors insurance coverage is an absolute must.
For more information about insurance for sewer contractors, including why it's so important and what type of coverage you need to carry, keep on reading.
Sewer contractors insurance protects your utility contracting business from lawsuits with rates as low as $67/mo. Get a fast quote and your certificate of insurance now.
Below are some answers to commonly asked excavation contractors insurance questions:
- What Is Sewer Contracting Insurance?
- How Much Does Sewer Contracting Insurance Cost?
- Why Do Sewer Contractors Need Insurance?
- What Type Of Insurance Do Sewer Contractors Need?
- What Does Sewer Contractors Insurance Cover & Pay For?
What Is Sewer Contracting Insurance?
Sewer contracting insurance is a type of insurance coverage specifically designed for businesses involved in sewer construction and repair projects. It provides financial protection for the business and its employees against potential risks and losses that may occur during the course of their work, such as damage to property, injury to workers, and legal liabilities.
The insurance coverage may include general liability, workers' compensation, property damage, and umbrella coverage. The amount and types of coverage will vary depending on the size and scope of the sewer contracting business, as well as the specific risks associated with their work.
How Much Does Sewer Contracting Insurance Cost?
The average price of a standard $1,000,000/$2,000,000 General Liability Insurance policy for small sewer contractors ranges from $67 to $89 per month based on location, size, revenue, experience and more.
Why Do Sewer Contractors Need Insurance?
As mentioned, the very nature of your job comes with a lot of risks. Wastewater spills, serious injuries, property damage, pollution, and lawsuits are just some of the risks that you are exposed to.
As the owner and operator of your sewer repair and installation business, you are liable for anything that does go wrong. For instance, if you or an employee were to damage a client's property and they filed a lawsuit against you, you would be responsible for any legal expenses, as well as the compensation that a court of law may find you liable for.
Or, if you employ a staff and they suffer a work-related injury, you would be responsible for covering the cost of their medical care and replacing any wages that they may be out if they are unable to work while they are recovering from their injuries.
Needless to say, the expenses that are associated with the risks that sewer contractors are exposed to can be exorbitant. In fact, the expenses can be so costly that they could end up putting you in serious financial trouble and could even potentially put you out of business.
That's why having the right type of sewer contractors insurance coverage in place is so important; if you're insured and something goes wrong, instead of paying the related expenses yourself, your carrier would cover the expenses for you.
In addition to saving you from potential financial ruin, having the necessary insurance coverage ensures that your business is compliant with the law.
sewer contractors are legally required to carry certain types of insurance and if you aren't covered, you could end up being hit with stiff fines and might even end up losing your license to operate.
What Type Of Insurance Do Sewer Contractors Need?
Like any other contracting business, there are several types of insurance coverages that a sewer contractor will need to carry.
The specific kind of sewer contractors insurance coverage you need depends on an assortment of factors; the city your business is located in, the specific services you provide, and the size of your operation, for example.
With that said, however, there are some key coverages that all sewer contractors will need to consider:
- Business interruption insurance
- Commercial auto insurance
- Commercial property insurance
- Completed operations liability insurance
- Cybercrime cyber liability insurance
- Employee fidelity insurance
- Equipment breakdown insurance
- Excess coverage
- General and professional liability insurance
- Inland marine insurance
- Pollution liability insurance (including HAZMAT coverage)
- Products liability and product recall insurance
- Workers' compensation insurance
These policies are just a few examples of the type of sewer contractors insurance you'll need to carry. The insurance needs of every sewer contractor are unique to the specifics of their operations.
Sewer Contracting's Risks & Exposures
Premises liability exposures at the contractor's office are generally limited due to lack of public access. Outdoor storage of materials and equipment may create vandalism and attractive nuisance hazards. Off-site exposures are extensive.
The public and employees of other contractors can be injured due to trips and falls over debris, equipment, or uneven ground. The area of operation should be restricted by barriers and proper signage to protect the public from the hazards of digging and other operations.
Digging can result in cutting utility cable, damaging property of the utility company and disrupting service to neighboring residences or businesses. Contractors laying underground cables should verify the absence of other utility lines prior to digging.
Once a trench is excavated, there must be shoring or other supports to prevent collapse if people are to work in the trench. A significant morale hazard may be indicated by the absence of detailed procedures to determine utility locations and to research prior uses of the land.
Construction sites create an attractive nuisance hazard, especially if work is close to residential areas. All equipment must be disabled when not in operation to prevent untrained individuals from using it.
Fencing must be in place with appropriate warning signs to prevent trespassing. The use of subcontractors as well as any contractual liability exposures should be examined.
Personal injury exposures include assault and battery and invasion of privacy. Background checks should be conducted for any employee who will have regular contact with customers.
Completed operations exposures can be very high if the sewer piping is not properly connected and sealed as any blockage, spillage, or leakage could cause contamination, bodily injury and disease, and property damage.
Quality control, including work order documentation, and employee training, background, and experience is important. Warranties, guarantees, and maintenance agreements, in which the contractor promises to keep a system in operation, should be reviewed.
Shoring methods are vital to prevent cave-in following excavation, especially if under streets and roads and any structures.
Environmental impairment liability exposure can be very high due to the transportation and disposal hazards if the contractor removes old sewer lines. Buried sewer lines may gradually leak, causing serious contamination of the soil and possibly groundwater.
Operations can result in claims of noise or dust pollution by neighboring properties and claims for cumulative structural damage to neighboring foundations from heavy traffic. Spillage and leaking of pollutants into the air, ground, or water can result in high cleanup costs and fines.
Disposal procedures must adhere to all EPA and other regulatory standards. Proper written procedures and documentation of both the transportation and disposal process are important.
Workers compensation exposures can be severe. Lifting and back injuries, hernias, sprains, and strains can occur from setting up retaining walls or trenches, installing sewer lines, or working from awkward positions. The collapse of retaining walls or overturn of equipment may result in severe injury or death from crushing or suffocation.
Digging may result in electrocution from underground electrical cable or asphyxiation from ruptured gas lines. Hazards increase in the absence of adequate shutoff and lockout procedures to make sure the wiring is not live. Common hazards include slips and falls, foreign objects in the eye, hearing impairment from noise, cuts or puncture wounds, bites from insects or vermin, temperature extremes, auto accidents during transportation to and from job sites, and exposure to pollutants.
Serious injuries may also arise during work with hand tools, large, heavy machinery, or from the carelessness of fellow employees. The absence of good maintenance, proper use of basic safety equipment, such as properly installed guards, steel-toed shoes, and eye protection, and strict enforcement of safety practices may indicate a morale hazard.
Property exposures at the contractor's own location are usually limited to those of an office and storage of materials, equipment, and vehicles. Sewer pipes waiting to be installed are bulky but present little likelihood of damage from fire, inclement weather, theft, or vandalism.
Fire hazards may arise from refueling and repair operations due to the storage and use of flammable gasoline and other fuel sources.
Inland marine exposures include accounts receivable if the contractor bills customers for services, contractors' equipment, construction materials in transit, installation floater, and valuable papers and records for customers' and suppliers' information. Backup copies of all data should be stored off premises.
Excavation and boring equipment or materials, including large concrete or cast-iron piping and lines, can be large and difficult to transport without adequate loading, tie-down and unloading procedures. The equipment may be damaged if its load capacity is exceeded during excavation and laying of sewer lines.
Ground at the construction site may be uneven. Equipment may strike underground objects or utilities, fall into holes or pits, slip or fall into mud, water, or sinkholes, be damaged in rock, land, or mudslides, or burst into fire from overload. Equipment may be subject to changes in the weather, water hazards, or being struck by other vehicles.
Materials and equipment left at job sites may be subject to theft and vandalism. Equipment should be secured and rendered inoperable when not in use. Contractors may lease, rent or borrow equipment, or may lease out, rent or loan their owned equipment to others, which poses additional risk as the operator may be unfamiliar with operation of the borrowed item.
Crime exposure is from employee dishonesty. Background checks should be conducted prior to hiring any employee. There must be a separation of duties between persons handling deposits and disbursements and reconciling bank statements. Physical inventories should be conducted on a regular basis to prevent employee theft of equipment.
Commercial auto exposures are high due to the transport of oversize sewer piping, machinery, and equipment. Secure tying down is vital to prevent heavy damage to other vehicles. In rural areas, roads may be narrow and the ground uneven, increasing the risk of collision and upset.
The driver of the truck must be trained in handling a top-heavy vehicle as considerable skill and knowledge are required for safe driving. If there is a collision, the resulting overturn may spill the load onto a public road and prevent access until cleanup is completed.
All drivers must have appropriate licenses and acceptable MVRs. Random drug and alcohol testing should be conducted. Vehicles must be maintained, and the records kept in a central location.
What Does Sewer Contractors Insurance Cover & Pay For?
Sewer contractors may be sued for a variety of reasons, including:
Property damage: Sewer contractors may be held liable for damage caused to property during sewer installation, repair, or maintenance work. For example, if a contractor accidentally damages a homeowner's landscaping or driveway while working on the sewer line, the homeowner may sue for compensation.
Insurance Protection: General liability insurance can protect sewer contractors from property damage claims. This insurance can cover the costs of repairs or replacement of the damaged property.
Personal injury: Sewer contractors may also be sued for personal injury claims. If a worker is injured on the job or a member of the public is injured due to the contractor's negligence, the contractor may be held liable for medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages.
Insurance Protection: Workers' compensation insurance can cover the costs of medical expenses and lost wages for injured workers. General liability insurance can cover the costs of medical expenses and other damages for members of the public who are injured.
Environmental damage: Sewer contractors may be held liable for environmental damage caused by their work. For example, if a contractor accidentally spills chemicals into a nearby waterway or fails to properly dispose of hazardous waste, the contractor may be sued for damages.
Insurance Protection: Pollution liability insurance can protect sewer contractors from environmental damage claims. This insurance can cover the costs of cleanup and restoration efforts.
Breach of contract: Sewer contractors may be sued for breach of contract if they fail to fulfill the terms of a contract with a client. For example, if a contractor fails to complete a project on time or provides substandard work, the client may sue for compensation.
Insurance Protection: Professional liability insurance, also known as errors and omissions insurance, can protect sewer contractors from breach of contract claims. This insurance can cover the costs of legal fees and damages awarded to the client.
Overall, insurance can help protect sewer contractors from a variety of lawsuits by covering the costs of legal fees, damages, and other expenses associated with a claim. It is important for sewer contractors to carefully evaluate their insurance needs and ensure they have appropriate coverage to protect themselves and their business.
Commercial Insurance And Business Industry Classification
- SIC CODE: 1623 Water, Sewer, Pipeline, and Communications and Power Line Construction
- NAICS CODE: 237110 Water and Sewer Line and Related Structures Construction, 238220 Plumbing, Heating, and Air-Conditioning Contractors
- Suggested Workers Compensation Code(s): 6306 Sewer Construction - All Operations & Drivers
Description for 1623: Water, Sewer, Pipeline, and Communications and Power Line Construction
Division C: Construction | Major Group 16: Heavy Construction Other Than Building Construction Contractors | Industry Group 162: Heavy Construction, Except Highway And Street
1623 Water, Sewer, Pipeline, and Communications and Power Line Construction: General and special trade contractors primarily engaged in the construction of water and sewer mains, pipelines, and communications and power lines.
- Aqueduct construction-general contractors
- Cable laying construction-contractors
- Cable television line construction-contractors
- Conduit construction-contractors
- Distribution lines construction, oil and gas field-general contractors
- Gas main construction-general contractors
- Manhole construction-contractors
- Natural gas compressing station construction-general contractors
- Pipelaying-general contractors
- Pipeline construction-general contractors
- Pipeline wrapping-contractors
- Pole line construction-general contractors
- Power line construction-general contractors
- Pumping station construction-general contractors
- Radio transmitting tower construction-general contractors
- Sewage collection and disposal line construction-general contractors
- Sewer construction-general contractors
- Telegraph line construction-general contractors
- Telephone line construction-general contractors
- Television transmitting tower construction-general contractors
- Transmission line construction-general contractors
- Water main line construction-general contractors
Sewer Contractors Insurance - The Bottom Line
In order to find out exactly that type of sewer contractors insurance coverage you should carry, consulting with a reputable agent who is experienced in covering unique businesses like yours is highly recommended.
A broker will be able to recommend what type of coverage you need and how much your policy limits should be. They will also be able to help you get the best rates possible so that you can have access to the coverage you need to protect your business without spending more than you have to.
Additional Resources For Construction Contractors Insurance
Learn about construction contractors insurance, including how much the premium costs and what is covered - and how business insurance can help protect your construction business from lawsuits.
- Blasting & Drilling Contractors
- Bridge Contractors
- Building Contractors
- Cable Layers
- Demolition Contractors
- Dock & Pier Contractors
- Dredging Contractors
- Foundation Layers
- General Contractors
- Road Contractors
- Sewer Contractors
- Steel Erection Contractors
- Surety Bonds
The construction industry is a high-risk industry that requires business insurance to protect against potential losses. There are several reasons why the construction industry needs business insurance:
Liability risks: Construction projects often involve working on other people's property, which can lead to potential liability risks if any damages or accidents occur. Liability insurance helps to protect against these risks by providing coverage for any legal fees or damages that may arise.
Property damage: Construction projects can also be at risk for property damage, whether it's the company's own equipment or tools, or the property being worked on. Commercial property insurance including inland marine helps to cover the cost of repairs or replacement of any damaged property.
Worker injuries: Construction is a physically demanding industry, and accidents and injuries are a common occurrence. Wrokers comp helps to cover the cost of medical treatment and lost wages for injured workers.
Financial losses: Construction projects can be disrupted by a variety of factors, such as weather, delays, or changes in scope. Business insurance helps to protect against financial losses that may occur as a result of these disruptions.
Overall, insurance is an essential component of the construction industry as it helps to protect against a range of potential risks and losses. Without it, companies in the construction industry would be vulnerable to financial ruin and may not be able to continue operating.
Minimum recommended small business insurance coverage: Business Personal Property, Employee Dishonesty, Surety Bonds, Accounts Receivable, Builders' Risk, Computers, Valuable Papers and Records, General Liability, Employee Benefits Liability, Umbrella Liability, Business Automobile Liability and Physical Damage, Hired and Nonowned Auto Liability & Workers Compensation.
Other commercial insurance policies to consider: Building, Business Income with Extra Expense, Earthquake, Flood, Leasehold Interest, Real Property Legal Liability, Contractors' Equipment, Goods in Transit, Installation Floater, Cyber Liability, Employment-related Practices Liability, Environmental Impairment Liability, Stop Gap Liability, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) (Drones).