New India not to be impacted by claims on grounded ship


Chennai : Non-life insurer New India Assurance said it will not be impacted heavily by claims owing to the grounding of oil tanker Pratibha Cauvery and the death of six sailors here Oct 31, said a senior official.

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“As per information available, there is not much of damage to the ship. The ship will be refloated. Our outgo will be restricted to the refloating expenses subject to policy conditions,” a senior official of the Mumbai-based company told IANS, preferring anonymity.

New India is the insurer for the double-hulled oil tanker.

When asked that insurers did not provide risk cover for vessels over 25 years and Pratibha Cauvery was 31 years old, the official said that in the case of an existing client/ship the company extends insurance cover subject to loading the basic premium.

“We do not provide insurance cover in the case of a new client with an old vessel,” he added.

Pratibha Shipping has hired a ship salvage agency to study the possibility of refloating the ship. The company is in talks with Larsen and Toubro Ltd (L&T) to dry dock the vessel at its shipyard near here.

On the issue of liability of the insurer for the death of six sailors who were drowned while trying to reach the shores on a life boat, the official said: “We are not liable to pay compensation for sailors’ death.”

According to him, Pratibha Shipping might be having insurance cover from the property and indemnity (P&I) club.

Confirming this, an official in the finance department of Pratibha Shipping told IANS over phone from Mumbai that the sailors’ lives are covered with P&I club and full compensation is expected.

On Oct 31, Pratibha Cauvery, anchored outside the Chennai Port area, was pushed by strong cyclonic winds to the beach. Six sailors died when their life boat capsized.