If ‘Fracking’ Causes an Earthquake, Will You Be Covered?
An article discusses whether damage to a home that is the result of an earthquake caused by drilling for oil or gas or by disposal of wastewater from such drilling operations, known as fracking, would be covered by a homeowners insurance policy. In general, earthquake coverage is not provided under a standard homeowners policy. Instead, homeowners must buy additional protection, but whether that coverage extends to a manmade earthquake is unclear.
A survey conducted by the Ohio Insurance Institute (OII) of 14 property/casualty insurance companies in Ohio on the issue found that nine insurers said losses from an earthquake caused by fracking would be covered if the homeowner had bought coverage. The others indicated coverage would not be provided. The survey included companies representing 73 percent of Ohio’s homeowners insurance market Mary Bonelli, an OII spokeswoman, said. “An Ohio earthquake may seem pretty remote, but that’s not saying they don’t or won’t occur.” In 2011, there were 18 earthquakes in Ohio, twice as many as in 2010 and more than four times the number recorded in 2009, according to the OII.
Read more on fracking coverage: Coverage Involving ‘Fracking’ Varies (Columbus Dispatch 4/17/12)