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CLAIMS CORNER - Insuring High Valued Goods in Transit

Your challenge: You need to move some high value goods (electronics, fine arts, heavy machinery, pharmaceuticals, designer clothes, etc) but you do not know how to make sure it is properly covered. And you have seen the headlines about cargo thefts.

Now what? Talk to your insurance agent about transit insurance.

Cargo theft is a huge problem and the risk is growing. According to the FBI this is a multi-billion dollar issue with the most vulnerable cargo being that of high value goods. Food and drink products account for the highest number of theft losses while pharmaceuticals and electronics have the highest value per loss.

To get the proper insurance at a reasonable rate, insurance carriers need to understand the nature of the commodity, the ins and outs of the transit arrangements and the terms of sale.

Questions that will be asked include:

  • Terms of sale: When will title transfer?

  • Who is responsible for load/offload and valuation?

  • Is the commodity sensitive or temperature of environmental changes?

  • Does the shipment require specialized equipment to load or offload?

  • Does it require unique packing of packaging, careful stowage or rigging?

  • Do the means of transport (truck/rail/air/marine vessel) affect the potential for successful delivery? Is it appropriate for the commodity?

  • Is the shipment over-size or over-weight? Does it require pilot cars, DOT-filed route approval or route adjustments to avoid low overpasses or low weight bridges?

Best practices: Does the transport company employ team drivers or convoys, require overnight stays only in guarded, well-lit truck parts with drivers aboard, employ anti-theft devices, regularly alter routes, use sealed containers or mark larger items for easy visual identification?

By paying close attention to details of transit arrangements, you and your insurance agent can help you secure affordable coverage of your high value goods in transit – and avoid being mentioned in the headlines.

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