DRYGAS ISSUES DRAINAGE RISK COVERAGE: THE MONEY AND THE POTENTIAL STORY FOR A LACKING NATIONAL IDEA TO COVER IT ARTICLE DRYGA ISSUED a revised insurance policy for the company, adding $100 million in additional coverage to its existing $1.9 billion policy for its “low-risk” class of policies covering the “emergency” and “hazardous” classes of drivers.
The change was approved by the company’s board of directors, which also approved an initial payout of $200 million to the driver plaintiffs.
The revised policy covers drivers who have not been involved in a crash since at least January 1, 2019.
“This is an important step toward the implementation of a comprehensive national standard for drygas, and the safety of our drivers,” the company said in a statement on Monday.
DRYGOVERNMENT ASSOCIATION OF DRYGIANS INC.
DRYDGE, Texas — In the wake of the recent tragic death of a 23-year-old driver in a Texas accident, some states are beginning to look at drygas claims coverage to ensure drivers are covered.
A study released this month by the Texas Department of Insurance found that drygas insurers typically cover at least 40 percent of claims and that the cost of cover depends on the severity of the injury.
“It’s important that we have the right insurance policy so we’re covered if we have an accident,” said Paul W. Taylor, executive director of the American Association of Insurance Commissioners, a trade group that represents the industry.
“But it’s important to be able to recover the money if it does happen.”
The state-by-state study found that about one-third of drygas drivers have coverage, with nearly half receiving coverage in some form or another.
“Drygas is a safe and affordable form of transportation, and we should be looking to provide as much protection for our customers as we possibly can,” said Jim O’Connor, executive vice president of the Texas Association of Independent Contractors, which represents drygas operators.
“A lot of people assume that dry gas is a liability for the drivers, but there are no rules about the amount of coverage.”
The report found that in Texas, drygas insurance covers claims up to $10 million for “critical injury” and $25 million for the “non-critical injury.”
The study also found that many drivers in drygas states who were injured in crashes with the gas trucking industry have claims totaling up to nearly $1 million.
That includes an estimated $250,000 for a fatal crash that occurred in South Carolina and a claim of $1,700,000 in South Dakota.
A spokeswoman for the Insurance Department of Texas, which oversees drygas coverage, declined to comment on the new policy.
The report did not examine the impact of a lack of insurance on the insurance rate of drivers in the other states where drygas is covered.
DRUID COOPERATIVE ASSOC I NGENITAL CORPORATION, WYNNSBURG, W. Va.
— A new bill in Wyoming would extend insurance coverage for the uninsured until the state begins collecting on claims from drivers who are in the hospital after an accident.
The state’s Insurance Department said it is seeking comments on the legislation.
The bill, introduced by Republican Rep. Ryan H. Kline, would also extend the state’s driver liability policy to cover drivers who crash and are not in the same car.
It would also give state insurance commissioner Todd Stryker the authority to require insurance companies to cover certain types of claims.
The measure has been introduced as part of a broader bill that would expand Medicaid coverage for low-income residents of the state.
WEST VIRGINIA — W.
Va. has been the first state in the country to expand Medicaid to low- income residents.
Earl Ray Tomblin signed the bill into law in July.
Va.’s new law will expand coverage for Medicaid to residents with incomes of up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level, which is $16,880 for a single person.
The new law also extends coverage to people with incomes between 138 percent and 200 percent of poverty, which covers up to about $27,200.
“I support this legislation to help provide additional benefits to families who are at a financial disadvantage,” Tomblin said in an e-mail.
The governor added that the expansion of Medicaid is necessary to help make West Virginia a more attractive place to live for families to have children.
— The water department in the small town of Waterloo, Woburn County, says its insurance rate for drivers with claims totaling $300,000 or more will increase by 25 percent beginning in 2019.
The department says it is trying to raise awareness among the public and the water department’s drivers about the new insurance policy.
“We want to be a