Marine Traders are used to managing flood risk yet the sheer scale of the storms and floods that swept the UK last winter simply overwhelmed the valiant attempts of many traders to preserve the integrity of their yards and premises against waters that had been rising for weeks.

As well as dealing with general loss of property and business interruption one of the main issues facing traders was restoring their premises to a safe and sanitary standard. Problems ranged from safety issues surrounding electrics to flooring being extremely damaged. In addition many business owners faced extreme challenges in properly drying out their inundated premises.

Mark Elcocks, Specialist Risks Executive with Marine Trades Insurance specialists IRCM, said “Where buildings insurance is in place it is advisable to obtain insurers’ approval for professional service providers to be employed in drying out premises rather than proceed on a self-help basis. The procedure can take even a specialist several weeks to complete in extreme cases but they will ensure the proper checks using systems such as infra red monitoring are conducted and certify the building as properly dried out and ready for reinstatement work to proceed”

Mark went onto say “It is vital for the future integrity of a trader’s premises to be properly dried out before work commences. Not only can the reinstatement work be compromised if undertook in damp conditions but moulds harmful to health can also be allowed to flourish in wall cavities”.

Despite a prompt response by insurers to the floods and storms, the ongoing effects are still being felt by traders as some buildings need to be completely demolished and cleared before new builds can begin. In some cases traders are still totting up the cost of interruption to their businesses before claims can be finalised.

The knock-on effects as far as future flood and storm cover are concerned could have a serious impact on the protection of some marine traders. Insurers have been hard hit in some areas and are either imposing large excesses for flood and storm damage at renewal as well as increased stillage conditions. Some increased excesses for storm and flood have been as high as £5,000. Mark Elcocks said “Businesses can offset increased excesses by opting for a low-cost excess protection policy. The policy provides an annual pot of money that can help offset the cost to businesses of increased insurance excesses.

For further information about IRCM or to obtain low-cost excess protection telephone Mark Elcocks on 01902 796 793 or email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *