Rail operators liability insurance study


The Office of Rail Transport examined how the rail operators in Poland complied in 2019 with the liability insurance requirements. All operators met the minimum requirements for the insurance amount what can be considered as an improvement as compared to 2018.

The study carried out by the Office of Rail Transport shows that all licensed railway operators which run regular transport services have complied with the requirements set in Art. 46 (10) of the Railway Transport Act 2003 regarding the obligation to secure third party liability of their commercial activity. The minimum insurance requirements are: EUR 100,000 for narrow-gauge rail operators, EUR 250,000 for carriers operating on infrastructure which they manage and EUR 2.5 million for other carriers.

Among the operators which are legally bound to insure their activities for the amount of EUR 2.5 million (paid in PLN), more than a half (51%) have secured a third party liability insurance for an amount higher than the mandatory minimum. The average insurance for all carriers amounted to PLN 34 million, for passenger operators – PLN 57.5 million and for freight operators – PLN 30.5 million. In 2019 the transport performance of passenger operators which had an insurance for an amount higher than PLN 100 million reached 73% of transport performance of all rail passenger operators, while the performance of freight operators insured for such sums reached 53% of total rail freight transport performance.

- There is a growing awareness among rail operators concerning financial requirements for securing a liability insurance. The regulations establish the minimum amount of insurance necessary for conducting rail transport services. However, some carriers opt to increase these sums because of the scope of their activities - comments Ignacy Góra, the President of the Office of Rail Transport.

Detailed requirements regarding third party liability insurance of a rail operator are specified in the Regulation of the Minister of Development and Finance on the insurance of the rail operator of May 25, 2017 (Journal of Laws 2017, Item 1033). An insurance contract which sets an insurance amount in EUR should contain an information about an exchange rate used to convert it to PLN (the average euro exchange rate announced by the National Bank of Poland for the first time in the year for which the insurance contract is concluded). However, a significant part of carriers who decide to secure an insurance for the minimum amount allowed do not specify the exchange rate used in their insurance policy.

The study on “The level of liability insurance of rail operators in 2019” is available in Polish here.


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