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The Nightmare of Overspray

The Nightmare of Overspray

By Tom Svrcek / Published April 2023

Photo by iStockphoto.com/terra24

You name it, and I am pretty sure we have seen it. Unfortunately, overspray happens even when you take the best precautions and think you have crossed every “t” and dotted every “i” in containment. Some jobsites cannot be fully contained. You do the best you can, but then the wind suddenly whips up or changes direction, and you have unwittingly sprayed a parking lot of cars.

     When it comes to overspray, a little prevention can be worth a fortune. There are measures that can be taken at various stages. Contractors should always be aware of what’s in the vicinity of where they are spraying. Do not underestimate the power of the wind. Just because there is no wind on the ground does not mean it is not blowing 40 or 50 feet above your head.

     Large contractors may have a general liability policy that includes overspray, but overspray coverage is getting increasingly harder to obtain. Getting insurance these days has radically changed.

     I advise all power washers to check their general liability policy to see if they have an overspray exclusion on it. That exclusion will read something like the following:

Exclusion—Overspray, Spillage, Leakage, or Overflow

     This endorsement modifies insurance provided under the following:

     Commercial General Liability Coverage Part

     The following exclusion is added to 2. Exclusions of Section 1—Coverage A—Bodily Injury and Property Damage Liability

     This insurance does not apply to “property damage” directly or indirectly caused by overspray, spillage, leakage, or overflow of hot tar, paint, foam, or other liquefied substances.

     If your general liability has this exclusion, call your agent and request to have it removed from your policy.

     For all the power washers that are insured with Joseph Walters Insurance, rest easy because we’ve got this! Our policy does include coverage for overspray.

     The following are a few examples of claims we have paid due to overspray:

  • Washing a home and overspray damaged the trex® decking
  • Damage to a roof
  • Damage to patio furniture
  • Damage to a window
  • Damage to landscape
  • Damage to fish ponds
  • Damage to 30 cars in a parking lot due to overspray caused by washing a building on a windy day
  • Overspray dropped onto pedestrians walking below while a building was being washed

     For more information, call Joseph D. Walters at 1-800-878-3808 or visit www.josephdwalters.com.

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