Pollution Liability for Landscape Contractors

Author, Drew Garcia, Vice President, Landscape Group, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

Image of landscaper spraying plants with pesticides.

Most landscape contractors believe their exposure to pollution is limited to the herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers they apply. In order to provide some limited coverage for this it is common to see the Herbicide/Pesticide Endorsement added to the Commercial General Liability Policy. Although the endorsement extends some coverage, Contractor’s Pollution Liability would help fill the gaps created by the General Liability Policy for all of the landscape contractor’s pollution exposures. 

Remember, General Liability Policies do not provide coverage for pollution. Contractors Pollution is protecting your environmental liability, and in today’s world the awareness to preserve the environment has never been stronger. A landscape contractor’s exposure to environmental liability is considered “high” and classed as “high” along with drilling, subsurface, site/dirt work, paving, mechanical and electrical contractors to name a few. 

Landscape contractor operations are almost exclusively performed outdoors in the environment which is the result of the high exposure. Beyond herbicide, pesticide, chemical applications and the property damage or bodily injury that may arise from such operations, other material exposures would include but are not limited to; fuel, oil, fumes, hydraulic fluids, silica, foundry sand, manure, dust, waste, water, natural gas, propane and mold. 

The Herbicide Pesticide Endorsement is an essential piece to any landscape contractor’s insurance program; however, a Contractors Pollution Liability policy is the best way to transfer your environmental exposure. Not all pollution policies are the same: capacity, coverage, exclusions and deductibles need to be examined. Making sure you have a policy that fits your operations and your exposure is critical.

For questions about which policies may match your company’s risk, please contact Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc. at (619) 937-0164.