MFPD directors in favor of excess earthquake coverage


By Erin Achenbach, News Editor

The Mehlville Fire Protection District Board of Directors voted unanimously last week to add excess earthquake insurance coverage to the district’s engine houses.

As part of the district’s insurance policy, firehouses have been covered for damage from earthquakes up to the total value of all real and personal property, however next year the fire district’s insurance provider will only cover damages up to $2.5 million.

“In four of our locations, our total value of real insurable personal property exceeds that $2.5 million,” Chief Financial Officer Brian Bond said at the Dec. 21 meeting.

The total insurable value of real and personal property at the No. 6 Engine House is “just a hair over $2.5 million,” Bond said. “The total insurable value is $2.69 million. There’s about $200,000 of exposure and if we wanted to protect ourselves against that, we would have an annual premium of $925.”

The No. 2 Engine House is about $339,000 over the limit. To cover the gap, it would be about $1,189 a year.

The No. 3 and No. 5 houses have more gaps in coverage. The No. 3 house is over $1 million in exposure and the No. 5 house is almost $8 million in exposure. The yearly premiums to cover the gaps would be $2,500 and $12,000 respectively.

“All four locations combined, we have almost $10 million in exposure because of this change in the limit,” Bond said. “For $16,718 we can be protected.”

On Dec. 6, the U.S. Geological Survey recorded a 2.5 magnitude earthquake near Kimmswick in Jefferson County, with reports of it being felt all the way into Oakville and the surrounding South County area. The St. Louis region is also close to both the New Madrid Seismic Zone to the south and the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone to the east.

“I didn’t want there to be an earthquake and for the board to find out the hard way that hey, we only have $2.5 million in coverage,” Bond said. “It’s very reasonable.”

The board voted unanimously in favor of including the optional excess earthquake coverage.