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Insurance?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by bunkphenomenon, Mar 20, 2016.

  1. bunkphenomenon

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    Hi everyone. When I fly, I try to stay away from people, but my biggest fear when Im flying is not losing my phantom. Its causing property damage or worse, personal injury (replacing a Phantom is a whole lot cheaper than being sued).

    Id like to know if anyone has insurance for flying their Phantom. If so, have you had to make a claim and what type of accident was it? If Im not mistaken, the AMA provides insurance when you join them. For this alone, Im tempted to join.
     
  2. eaglegoaltender

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    If you are that concerned you might want to look into getting insurance......the Phantom can be added to your home policy but that will not cover any personal injury suits. In fact most home owner policies won't cover anything "mad made" that falls from the sky and does property damage.

    If you want to protect yourself you would probably need a commercial policy, however if you are not making money with your drone......that can be considered pretty expensive route to take for hobby flying....but not for commercial use. Very likely you would also need a business registered to obtain a commercial policy.

    Insurance for UAS (aviation insurance) is not all that expensive when considering a commercial policy (if you are making money with it). When I looked into it a commercial insurance policy for a DJI Phantom 3 and an Inspire 1 Pro, with up to $1 million (per occurrence) liability the average cost ranged from $1,000.00 - $1,550.00 a year in premiums - that's with a 15% - 20% deductible and legal liability and physical damage (hull insurance) for the owner/operator.

    Further to all that, the insurance provider wants to see specific training completed, number of hours you have flown, areas where you will be flying, certification for RC, any exemptions (like your FAA 333 and up here (Canada) TC exemptions), understanding of aeronautical charts, meteorology, aerodynamics, keeping up to date maintenance and flight logs, plus ensuring you have the latest OEM updates/upgrades, etc. etc. These specifics all come into play when they consider your premiums and if they will carry/cover you at all.

    A lot of people don't realize or agree with the fact - these units are treated no differently than manned aircraft when it comes to insurance - if it flies - you are the pilot regardless of whether you are in the cockpit or on the ground.

    I am not familiar with your AMA coverage - what would it cover for you insurance wise?

    .
     
    #2 eaglegoaltender, Mar 20, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2016
    kevinm likes this.
  3. bunkphenomenon

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    Thanks so much for the info. Yeah, I feel nakid not having protection for something that potentially has the ability to do alot of damage.

    Im still researching the AMA route. They mention it on their website, but I need to do more research. Academy of Model Aeronautics - Membership Options
     
  4. rcheing

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    Interesting Eagle, are there any recommended insurance companies that specialize in UAV's?


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
  5. eaglegoaltender

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    Up here in Canada, Zurich Insurance has come out with "drone specific" policies and are pretty well the first to offer this (up here at least). There coverage for a typical policy includes......

    1. First-party property coverage – for theft or damage to the drone and any ground equipment used to operate it, or any electronics or components (payload) carried;

    2. Third-party liability coverage – for property damage and bodily injury caused by the drone, premises liability at locations used in connection with scheduled aircraft, as well as medical expenses.

    3. Additional coverage extensions, which may include malicious damage, system hacking, and personal injury.

    Zurich, AIG, AON are all coming out with drone specific policies - real money maker on the way for insurance companies no doubt.

    Hill and Usher offer an Aerial Pak policy that looks very good, here is an FAQ on their coverage Aerial Pak Insurance for Professional Remote Control Aerial Photographers from Hill & Usher Insurance & Surety, LLC

    This link Drone Insurance may help you find good insurance related info - you can get a quote directly from there also as they quote for any countries you may be enquiring from. I haven't checked it out myself but when I read the policies offered are underwritten by companies like "Lloyds of London" - it is a good sign as to being legit. Lloyds covers pretty much everything and anything world wide.

    Your AMA in the US offers very good coverage - albeit not for commercial purposes but the price is right for sure.

    As with any/most insurance providers - they offer us the moon till it comes to paying out............so just be careful with your research. Best bet is to use an insurance broker to find what best suits you and your needs.

    EDIT: NOTE: Under the surface and in the fine print .....what is important with regard to AMA insurance that I understand is.....AMA's insurance covers you if you fly in accordance with their regulations and rules and that might mean flying only in areas that are specifically designed or meant for RC flight. Can't say for certain and "more research into that" is required. Maybe a member can offer up some details on their coverage.
     
    #5 eaglegoaltender, Mar 20, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2016
  6. eaglegoaltender

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    Your welcome for the info and thanks for the link to the AMA site. On the surface it looks like very good coverage at a fantastic rate for hobby fliers. From what I read their policies don't cover commercial flying (have to dig deeper to confirm).

    NOTE: Under the surface and in the fine print .....what is important with regard to AMA insurance that I understand is.....AMA's insurance covers you if you fly in accordance with their regulations and rules and that might mean flying only in areas that are specifically designed or meant for RC flight. Can't say for certain and as I said and you have mentioned "more research into that" is required.
     
  7. MedinaTaylor

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    I got an insurance policy from State Farm. It's an umbrella policy for $1.5 million above what my homeowners would cover. (My agent confirmed liability is covered under my homeowners no matter where I legally fly as long as it's not for commercial)

    I also was able to get a rider for the drone, case, and batteries. And only for an extra $60 a year. It will replace all my equipment (except the tablet) if it is lost, stolen, or even I crash it.

    For $60 to cover my bird from any kind of accident seems like a no brainer.
     
    Skrilla likes this.
  8. SGs

    SGs

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    I'm looking into that today.
     
  9. GoodnNuff

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    Just to clarify, you can fly anywhere, but you must be in compliance with AMA flight rules to be covered by insurance. If you are flying recklessly, you will not be covered. You can actually call the AMA during the week and speak to someone who would better explain this.
    From their website:

    "A membership in the Academy of Model Aeronautics covers you for whatever you fly and wherever you fly. And it doesn’t matter if you fly an airplane, helicopter, park flyer, multirotor, quadcopter, sUAS, FPV, DIY drone or even an aerial robot. Just join the AMA, fly for recreational fun and operate within the AMA National Model Aircraft Safety Code and you’re good to take off."

    Here is a link to the AMA Safety Code: https://www.modelaircraft.org/files/105.pdf
     
  10. rcheing

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    I wonder if "anywhere" means flying "anywhere" in one of their specially designated air parks around the country. Also, my insurance carrier is GEICO, I'm going to ask them if they offer some type of sUAS insurance policy sort of like the poster above in regards to State Farm.
     
  11. GoodnNuff

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    No, "anywhere" means "anywhere that is in compliance with their safety code" (i.e. flying over an interstate would not meet the code, nor would flying over a street festival, etc.) Flying over a rural area, in a city park (with no RC restrictions in place), flying in a National Forest, flying on your own property, etc., all meet their Safety Code Requirements. To me, it is $75 well spent, but then I fly fixed wing RC planes as well and enjoy the AMA's monthly magazine (which is actually where I first learned about racing drones).

    Did you click on the link to the Safety Code? I believe the only geographical restriction that disqualifies you from being covered by the insurance is "Flying where RC aircraft are restricted."
    And "Flying within 25 feet of spectators."
    Edit: Add flying beyond line of sight, or flying FPV without a spotter to those restrictions.
     
    #11 GoodnNuff, Mar 20, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2016
  12. eaglegoaltender

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    Thanks for the clarification GoodnNuff, and for the link to the rules/reg etc.

    After briefly looking over some of the rules I would think the biggest obstacle as to having an insurance claim rejected would be when flying and having an accident beyond your VLOS (which we all do). If you are flying and using FPV they also state you must have a "vLOS spotter" who can keep an eye on the bird and be capable of taking over for the pilot if needed.

    So those rules might pose a problem as stated with regard to any claims being denied - however those rules are without a doubt part of any insurance providers rules (insurance companies are likely taking all the info they can from the AMA site and the FAA site and making that info part of their own rules).

     
  13. GoodnNuff

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    Yes, I imagine it might be quite difficult to collect on any insurance policy or have them pay out for damages/injury if one is flying BLOS since the FAA feels it is unsafe. But when you file your claim, how would they prove you were BLOS and/or without a spotter? Not that I am advocating dishonesty or nuthin'...
     
  14. Air Ontario

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    Pretty much the same for me here in Canada but I didn't have to pay extra, includes 2 million coverage for personal use. Zero coverage for commercial and the commercial policy has a exception clause if I use it for personal.............
     
  15. eaglegoaltender

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    LOL - of course your not advocating any "dishonesty" - after all that would make you an insurance claims adjuster!

    I suppose any insurance provider would request your flight records (depending on the amount of the claim likely) and from that they could tell how far away you were from the scene of the occurrence. As to knowing whether you had a flight spotter or not - doubtful they could prove anything there either way. Maybe they would buy it you said it was a "fly-away", hence beyond your VLOS???

    I read an article where a "big wig" (think his surname was Hanson or something like that) from the AMA, stated the majority of their insurance claims have been from drones flying into cars (he declined to state how many however).
     
  16. eaglegoaltender

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    Nice, you are right, can't beat the cost of the "rider" added to the policy for replacement of your equipment. Home insurance providers call that coverage "the pet lion coverage" (or something ridiculous like that). Meaning if your pet lion mauled a neighbors house interior they would cover the damages - however if your "pet lion" mauled your place, they wont cover that. Same goes for damage to your own property from a drone accident.

    What sort of deductible if you don't mind me asking?
     
  17. MedinaTaylor

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    No deductible
     
  18. peterepeat69

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    To me the best insurance is for dji to include parachutes on their drones , one button press emergency deploy that's innovation


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
  19. Kevin87

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    Just set up a policy today only covers if your wreck your drone through State Farm and you will go through umpteen people know one knows about it apparently think it's like 75$ a year but they said they do not cover any property damage
     
  20. Aaron Boyle

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    If you're using your drone in Canada, I've recently purchased coverage with Drone Insurance Depot. They meet all Transport Canada's requirements and they have the cheapest rate that I could find so far.

    Here's the link: Drone Insurance Depot - Home

    I definitely recommend them for any insurance in Canada.
     
    UpTo90 likes this.