Y2K Insurance 'Haven't addressed that yet'

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Wife just called our local insurance agent and asked about Y2K. The response was 'Gee, I don't believe that we've addresses that yet.'

Went on to note that sump pump damage, due to Y2K or anything else, in our area requires a rider. It is not covered under the standard policy.

Y'all might want to check with your local agents and see if they have 'addressed it' yet.

-- just another (another@engineer.com), November 09, 1999


just another, nice to read you!!!

I talked with our agent a few weeks ago. They have nothing available to cover Y2k 'problems', but he assured me that his company spent alot of money/time fixing their y2k problems. I thought you could get insurance for just about anything, if it is only a bitr, you would think they would be swarming all over this (even with the possible frauds/scams) they are missing out on windfall profits (assuming its a bitr). ;-) ;-)

-- y2kinsured (karlacalif@aol.com), November 09, 1999.

You'd think so, wouldn't you. But the talk that the wife had with the agent makes it sound like they haven't thought it through at all.

-- just another (another@engineer.com), November 09, 1999.

A few months ago, I read that insurance companies were selling $1 million corporate insurance policies. Price: $600,000!

Since insurance premiums are based on RISK, what do THEY know that WE don't...?


-- Dennis (djolson@cherco.net), November 09, 1999.

best y2k insurance you can have is preparing yourself and family, food, water, heat, shelter... don't count on an insurance company or you will be lost,learn to give up things they are not important as your life.

-- sandy (rstyree@overland.net), November 10, 1999.

Sandy --

Not to worry. This was passed on as it came up in a conversation on another topic. Thought it was interesting. Actually, if Y2K is something less than a 10, then this might be of more than theoretical interest, if you suffer a loss. (Our house is higher than most around here and I don't expect significant water in the basement, whether the sump pump works or not.) Other things, such as 'fried green refrigerators' or computers or such may be a different story, which is why our house will be cut off from the power lines at the main breaker about 5:00pm on 31 Dec.

-- just another (another@engineer.com), November 10, 1999.

Another sorry don't come here alot but as for cutting everything off am thinking of doing that too but am in the middle of no where, no people even how will I know if it works or not unless I leave it on?

-- sandy (rstyree@overland.net), November 10, 1999.

Just another,

Re. disconnecting from power at 5:00pm:

At what time would you consider reconnecting to the grid?

To avoid spikes, do you plan to have surge protectors on all vital power inputs?

What are "best practices" to protect vital equipment against low power inputs? Do you think it necessary to taje similar steps to isolate your home appliances pre and post rollover/

Sorry for the many questions, but this is an area that we have overlooked until now.

Thanks for your comments on the UNIX boxes that may run GMT.

-- Bill P (porterwn@one.net), November 10, 1999.

just another,

I had not considered that 'plain as day' possiblity. I was planning on being on-line to monitor events? Any suggestions for the Little Guys/Girls "Command Centers".

-- ***** (karlacalif@aol.com), November 10, 1999.

Okay, in order, (although this might qualify as an entire thread if anyone wants to dive in and start one.)

Sandy --

I hadn't thought about the problem from the perspective you give. We have one of those wind-up radios, which, with the antenna-on-a-reel gives reasonable reception for the local am/fm bands, (lousy on the short-wave bands). From where we are, we can look around and see if there are any lights on anywhere in the immediate vicinity. This isn't a perfect solution, as the load is the thing, as 'The Engineer' persistently points out, and there isn't anyway I know of to accurately assess the potential load problems. I just don't trust the local power co. to be able to walk and chew gum at the same time, so will be off the grid. Another thought just hit me.. we also have a TV that plugs into the cars cigarette lighter.

Bill P -- The reason I am disconnecting at 5:00pm on the 31st is that I, personally, am doing a 'command performance' at the Fortune 500 I work for that evening, and I wanted it done before I leave as the wife didn't want to have to do it. She wants everything handled before I hit the trail. (In case it takes me a while to get home.) We have prepared for the possibility that it may take a while for the power to come back on reliably. Thus, it won't be much of a hardship for her and the kids to get by without for a day or so. If nothing happens, then we reconnect.

As far as precautions on the appliances, the big danger is low-voltage, but, of course, if the main breaker is open this is not an issue. As for spikes, again, if the breaker is open, anything strong enough to arc over that isn't going to leave much in the way of a house anyway. I hadn't thought about the 'fried green refrigerator' problem either until a few days ago, but it is reasonably easy to overcome. Just open the big switch on the breaker box. Then watch the neighbors, the street lights, etc. No problem after a while, then reconnect. For the 'ultra-cautious', suspender, belt, *and* safety pin types (like yours truly), leave it off until maybe Sunday or Monday, or if worried about the possibility of load problems on Monday with big industry possibly coming back on line after a weekend off, then wait til Tuesday. Those who are preparing have surely done so for the *possibility* of a power outage of indeterminate length, so the way to protect against the possible effects of an unplanned outage, in my opinion, is to go with a 'planned' one. A little inconvenient, but better than replacing a bunch of computers, etc.

Karla -- See the response to Sandy. Look at the neighbors. The street lights. If the radio or TV is still on, they are a good source of news. The radio is covered either by battery powered transistors or the windup ones. (You can get these in a number of places. Lehmanns Non-Electric catalog, on-line, I think Wally World has 'em, and I think I saw some in Sam's club here. You'll have to check locally, as not all Sam's Clubs carry everything found in another Sam's Club.) The TV is covered because we got one of those little portables that really is portable, it plugs into the car cigarette lighter. That is the best I can do.

Hope this helps.

-- just another (another@engineer.com), November 10, 1999.

I am an insurance agent and I can tell you right now, we DONT know anything more than the rest. What I can say is that we have had numerous calls desiring coverage for y2k with respects to businesses, and trust me, the prices for coverage is outta sight. We DONT even offer coverage for 'fixers' lloyds of london might....As for the homeowner policy, check with your agent. Some policies have coverage for food spoilage but NOT if the power goes out due to power failure away from the premises. To be TOTALLY sure, call the COMPANY and ask to speak with a Claims Adjuster, as an agent, we really allowed to speak of what is or is not covered. It is all about policy definitions, and that is up to the adjuster. I know, I used to adjust also. Good luck, but my best guess is that there really will be no coverage much if at all for y2k. Companies would go under. As for the computer side of things, well, companies are struggling and many that we write for have been experiencing MANY computer problems. Here is food for thought, How many are getting a bill for 2 months coverage on their renewals? Most companies are now wanting 'escrow' money. Used to be one month up front. Things that make ya go hmmmm

-- tis me (not@aol.com), November 11, 1999.

A point I never see discussed, which goes to the heart of this, is that it will be to somebody's benefit to decide that it either is or is not a y2k-related problem, and someone else's benefit if it is determined to be otherwise.

Based on the debates we have had on this forum all year (refinery explosions, payroll glitches, etc.), this is often a very difficult question.

The insurance companies will be on the side of it being a y2k glitch if that gets them off the hook.

Companies will have to decide whether their best litigation strategy is to claim the problem was y2k-related to qualify for coverage under the y2k liability act, or not y2k-related to qualify for insurance coverage.

And the bloke who brought the original insurance claim or settlement against whichever company will be a long time in seeing any payback.

All very well to assume the problem you had is y2k-related and that somebody owes you and to start pointing fingers, but I think this will be the linchpin of much litigation next year because there will be so much $$$$ at stake as to WHETHER it is officially considered y2k-related. And your opinion may not count.

-- Brooks (brooksbie@hotmail.com), November 11, 1999.

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