Broker wants change in P&I club's terms

Insurance broker Aon is appealing to P&I (Protecting & Indemnity) clubs to remove their “war-risk exclusion” terms so that ship owners have greater coverage from them in the event of a piracy attack. Aon said the wording of the cover was ambiguous because the loosely defined exclusion of “weapons of war” could instead forward piracy liabilities onto the primary hull war-risk underwriters.

“Piracy attacks have focused ship owners’ attention on the need for certainty of cover with the right insurer. The P&I war exclusion is open to interpretation, given that pirates invariably employ weaponry. This is giving cause for concern and the insurance industry needs to resolve this lack of clarity. With P&I clubs’ expertise in handling liability claims, it would be a positive solution – provided the cost implications are neutral – to shift primary P&I war risks cover from hull insurers to P&I clubs,” said Stephen Hawke, executive director of Aon.

A UK P&I spokesman said : “We would look at what Aon has to say on the subject, but can’t comment beyond that at this stage.”