Miller's Marine War Risks

Page 118


Derelict mines, torpedoes, bombs and weapons of war


15.1 Loss or damage caused by derelict mines, torpedoes, bombs or other weapons of war now pose special difficulties. These do not arise from the law itself, since the establishment of the claim will concern issues of fact only. They arise from the wording of the policy and in particular the inclusion of the word “derelict”. Where the suggestion for the use of this word came from, or why it was included, is not known but it is interesting to note that the earlier drafts of the new Institute War and Strikes Clause with the new MAR Form did not include it. As will be seen it poses a problem of no mean order. The Mutual War Risks Associations have attempted to avoid this problem by insuring the consequences of these weapons being used, both in respect of unqualified mines and other weapons, and “derelict” mines and other weapons. 15.2 Before 1983, there were attempts to argue that the f.c. & s. warranty excluded the risk of contact with mines and torpedoes from the Marine Policy in only certain, but not all, circumstances. These attempts were never pleaded in court and thus put to the test, if only because of the well-known practice of the London market to cover loss or damage arising from mines and torpedoes under the War Risk Policy. This policy, as has already been noted earlier in , included “mines, torpedoes, bombs or other engines of war” as specific insured perils and this, it is suggested, would have defeated any serious attempt to plead that in some circumstances the Marine Policy on the S.G. Form would have covered loss or damage caused by such weapons. Before 1983, therefore, it could be said that loss or damage caused by such weapons were at least traditionally regarded as matters for the War Risk Policy and were accepted as such, although as mentioned earlier,1 the marine underwriters accepted the claim on the Granwood in circumstances that might have justified a refusal to do so. 15.3 Since 1983, the new Institute Time Clauses have excluded from their insurance only “derelict mines, torpedoes, bombs or other derelict weapons of war” and the new Institute War Clauses include these as insured perils word for word in the same form. This seems to beg the question that the underwriters of the Marine Policy intend to bear at least some of the risks of mines and other weapons which cause loss of or damage to the insured object. will be found in the chapters devoted to ships, cargo and containers.

Page 119

15.4 The word “derelict” is defined in the Oxford English Dictionary as meaning:

Forsaken, abandoned, left by the possessor or guardian; especially of a vessel abandoned at sea; land left dry by the recession of the sea; a piece of property abandoned by the owner or guardian especially a vessel abandoned at sea. A person abandoned or forsaken.

The rest of this document is only available to i-law.com online subscribers.

If you are already a subscriber, click Log In button.

Copyright © 2024 Maritime Insights & Intelligence Limited. Maritime Insights & Intelligence Limited is registered in England and Wales with company number 13831625 and address 5th Floor, 10 St Bride Street, London, EC4A 4AD, United Kingdom. Lloyd's List Intelligence is a trading name of Maritime Insights & Intelligence Limited.

Lloyd's is the registered trademark of the Society Incorporated by the Lloyd's Act 1871 by the name of Lloyd's.