Owners of commercial ships are responsible for the safety of both their vessels and their workers. However, they are not liable for injuries that occur to employees of other organizations while they work on their ships. If you are an employer planning to station staff on a boat you do not own, you may need Maritime Employers Liability Insurance.
MEL is a type of policy that protects you and your employees while they work on a ship owned by someone else, including workers whose positions are not those of captain or crew member. For example, if one of your workers gets hurt on the way to an oil platform, MEL insurance would cover the costs. It also covers employees stationed temporarily on a boat you own.
Do I Need MEL Insurance?
Having MEL insurance can save you from having to pay devastatingly large sums of money for personal damages. Here are a few examples of employee activities that might require you to have this type of coverage:
- Building along the shoreline
- Surveying for seismic activity
- Conducting scientific studies
- Observing national fisheries
Any type of watercraft, including a pontoon, ship, or dredge, can be included under marine insurance. Most insurance companies sell MEL as a stand-alone policy.