Non Life Insurance - Does your insurance cover tsunami?

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The killer 'tsunami' caused unprecedented devastation inundating the coastal regions of the south and killing over a lakh. A series of tidal waves often generated by earthquake-induced movement of the ocean floor, 'tsunami' has struck the Indian coast for the first time and very few have been lucky to escape its wrath.

Those who have fortunately survived have unfortunately lost almost all. But would they have been better off if they had bought insurance? Before that, does your general insurance policy cover tsunami?

Says Mr Kamesh Goyal, CEO, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Company' in India it would fall under the Standard Fire and Special Perils policy. And abroad they are covered as a part of the earthquake related natural perils in Property Insurance. But for many insurance companies the answers are diverse as they are yet to figure out whether tsunami should be categorized under floods or earthquakes.

Insurance companies in our country do not have any separate cover for 'tsunami' unlike companies abroad. Reason being, its first occurrence on the Indian shores. But most would categorise it under earthquakes since a tsunami is a quake in the sea hence also called seaquakes.

So if you have bought an householders policy and taken an earthquake rider with it you can count yourself lucky. But the people who were struck by the huge tidal wave were too poor to buy any insurance for themselves. Hence the claims on account of the killer wave will not be too many from individuals but insurers will be paying up those who have bought personal accident covers through credit cards

Source : back