Great American Environmental Division Announces Special Risks Program

The Environmental Division of Great American Insurance Group is pleased to announce an enhancement to its current environmental program. The new “Special Risks” coverage enhancement is specifically designed to offer site-related pollution coverage to classes of business that can be considered higher exposure due to the nature of their operations. These “Special Risks” would include but not be limited to: petroleum refineries, large petroleum terminals, crude oil and natural gas pipelines, chemical processing plants, chemical manufacturing, industrial manufacturing, pulp and paper, metal processing and finishing, and injection wells.

“Since the inception of our division almost a dozen years ago, our general philosophy has been to minimize our exposure to these special risks during the early years of our program.” Mark Vuono, Environmental Divisional President, said. “As we continue to grow, our book of business has matured to the point where we can successfully integrate these “Special Risks” exposures into our overall book of business.”

The division will now consider coverage for “Special Risks” on a primary basis using its Premises Environmental Liability Insurance policy (PEL) for Bodily Injury, Property Damage, Clean-Up Costs, NODs and Contingent Transportation for scheduled Covered Locations up to a two-year policy term. On a case-by-case basis, additional coverage grants such as Business Interruption and First Party Transportation may be considered.

The policy territory is limited to locations within the US or Canada with no international risks being considered at this time. Excess coverage over another environmental carrier’s primary pollution policy using Great American’s standard excess policy form or similar contract may also be considered. Potential offerings for these risks would include limits of liability up to $20 million per pollution condition with $40 million aggregate, exclusive of Legal expense. For risks under this enhancement, the minimum self-insured retention would be $100,000, and target minimum premium would be $100,000 per policy.

The Environmental Division is approaching this strategic enhancement as they always do – deliberately and with thoughtful consideration for impact on current and future brokers, agents, clients and associates. This decision was reached after detailed discussions and thorough due diligence, in keeping with the division’s management principles.        

“As we work to best support our brokers, we have been evaluating our industry presence and growing our highly experienced staff of underwriting, technical and legal experts to handle such accounts and best position us for future growth.” Mark Vuono, Environmental Divisional President, also said. “We feel that this is the right time to venture into this arena. This dynamic team structure allows for swift decision making and support of the growth of our specialty coverages, products and program business.”

Great American’s Environmental Division will continue to offer its current broad suite of site pollution and contractor’s pollution/professional and specialty environmental products such as Closure and/or Post Closure for any interested insured on an open brokerage basis.

“With any business decision the division makes, the first priority is always to maintain the service-oriented, collaborative culture that differentiates us in the industry and sets Great American apart.” Barry Geisler, Environmental Divisional SVP and CUO, said. “Our structure allows us the ability to maintain our collaborative working environment while better serving our brokers with new key growth initiatives like this one.”

Great American Environmental is a strong, respected carrier committed to strategic growth within its established markets, as well as these new “Special Risks” opportunities. Great American’s Environmental Division can capitalize on the fact that while the division has become larger, stronger and more flexible than any point in its history, its culture and values have not changed. This coverage enhancement represents growth to the division, but equally important is the division’s commitment to maintaining its values-based, collaborative culture.

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