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Understanding underground service line coverage: Don’t ignore this hidden risk

Underground service lines can be damaged in several ways. Typical farm policies may not provide coverage for damage that happens, and the effects can be incredibly costly.

Underground piping in farm trench

Picture you own this farm, a beautiful place that not only provides flourishing crops, but also holds a stunning landscape with a big maple tree. For years it’s been the focal point of the farm with people often stopping to tell you how lucky you are to have such a beautiful tree on you property. Sure, you’re lucky, until one summer day when that maple tree expands its roots into a water pipe running underneath your property.

Contrary to popular belief, the reality is you, the property owner, are responsible for any underground service lines that run from the street to your farm. This includes any sewer and water piping, as well as underground electrical and communication lines connecting to your property. It is your responsibility to fix and pay for any of these lines should a problem occur.

How do service line damages happen?

Underground service lines can be damaged in a variety of ways. Some common causes include tree roots, animal interference, corrosion, weight of vehicles or equipment pressing down on the lines, and simple wear and tear. No matter the cause of the damage, the effects can be incredibly costly.

Typical farm policies don’t provide coverage for damage to underground services lines, which can mean big trouble for a farm owner should there be damage. Aside from repairing the actual line itself, you may need to dig up landscaping, driveways, sidewalks, or pastures to get to the damaged line.

What can you do?

The first step is to contact your insurance agent to determine if they will cover underground service line failures. At SECURA, you can add Underground Service Line coverage to your existing policies to ensure you are fully protected against the things that are, unfortunately, just out of your control.

Learn more about our Underground Service Line coverage.

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