NAICS CANADA CODE: 541330 Engineering services

Description of Operations:

Engineers need to be able to draw upon and apply a great deal of knowledge and training in the areas of higher mathematics, as well as the natural and physical sciences. Engineers may specialize in chemical, civil, electrical, mechanical or process design.

Related to engineers are the services offered by architects. Oftentimes, engineering operations also have architects on staff or other contractual associations with architectural companies. Engineers are involved in a wide variety of applications that may include roads, bridges, railways and airports, as well as various other buildings or facilities.

Due to the varied areas of knowledge or expertise needed by an engineer, education, certification, experience and professionalism are items to consider, in addition to the background in the field of expertise needed.

  • Property exposure is primarily an office exposure. There may be considerable storage of customers’ records, which significantly adds to a fire load. Storage should be in fireproof file cabinets, and fire suppression systems must not damage the papers.

  • Inland marine exposure consists of computers, accounts receivable, and valuable papers and records. The computers generally have hardware and software designed specifically for engineering applications. These are very expensive and must be backed up regularly. Computer systems must have adequate security features to prevent unauthorized access due to industrial espionage or by hackers. Valuable papers and records consist of product proposals, prototypes and final specifications. Duplicates must be made often and stored off-site. Storage on premises should consist of fireproof cabinets. There may be an off-premises exposure if engineers take tools and equipment to customers’ job sites.

  • Crime exposures are from employee dishonesty. Ordering, billing and disbursement duties must be separated and regular audits performed. Employee dishonesty issues may arise when an employee is on a client’s premises. Background checks should be conducted before permitting any employee to visit clients.

  • Occupiers’ liability exposure is limited to occasional customer visits. Areas accessible to the public must be free of obstacles with floor coverings in good condition. Off-site exposures consist of visits to customers’ premises and to job sites. There should be procedures in place for enforcement of rules regarding off-site conduct by employees.

  • Professional liability exposure is extensive. Consideration must be made as to potential for injury and death due to an error in design that results in structural or process failure. The collapse of an interstate or high rise will cause much more damage than the collapse of a creek crossing or culvert. All design specifications must be followed and inspections regularly conducted. Documentation must be clear, with changes marked and authorizations signed by both the engineer and the customer. Customers can suffer financial loss due to construction delays and cost overruns.

  • Automobile liability exposure comes from the vehicles that are used to visit customers and travel to job sites. Generally, the vehicles are private passenger types or pickups. All drivers must be licensed with MVRs that are checked regularly. If vehicles are supplied to employees, there should be clear guidelines regarding personal and permitted use of the vehicle.

  • Workplace safety exposure is twofold. The office exposure consists of repetitive motion injuries. All workstations should be ergonomically designed. Off-site exposures are due to visits to customers’ premises and to job sites. Employees should have appropriate safety gear when visiting a job site.

Minimum recommended Insurance coverage for engineers:

Business Personal Property, Dishonesty, Disappearance and Destruction, Accounts Receivable, Computers, Valuable Papers and Records, General Liability, Professional, Umbrella, Nonowned Automobile

Other Insurance coverages to consider for engineers:

Computer Fraud, Contractor’s Equipment, Employment Practices Liability, Business Auto Liability and Physical Damage