Given that scuba diving is a potentially hazardous activity, and the fact that our society is becoming more and more litigious, here is an idea of what insurance cover is available to our members on Club activities. The general gist that you should get is that it is relatively limited. Obviously, this is a guide only and may contain errors. The full policies can be obtained at the SRA.
The ANUSC and its activities are covered by the ANU Sports and Recreation Association (SRA)’s insurance. In order for the conditions of the insurance to be met, the trip leader must be an ANUSC member (and hence an SRA member) and the activity being undertaken must be an official ANUSC activity.
The SRA’s personal accident insurance covers ANUSC members for death or injury sustained on a club activity. The following is covered, but it is not an exhaustive list. Members should contact the SRA directly if they have specific queries.
- up to $50,000 in the event of death or permanent disability for persons with dependents
- up to $20,000 for sickness resulting in surgery
- up to $5,000 for fractured bones and $2,000 for dental procedures (limited to $250 per tooth)
- up to $5,000 for emergency transport
Various exclusions apply to the personal accident insurance coverage, most of which are unlikely to arise in the context of ANUSC activities. Exclusions which are likely to be relevant are:
- deliberate exposure to exceptional danger (except in an attempt to save human life)
- the influence of alcohol or drugs
- expenses for which a Medicare benefit is payable
Other forms of SRA insurance provide coverage for the loss of ANUSC equipment on club activities (however, the policy has an excess of $15,000 which means that the loss would have to be substantial). In addition, the SRA has Marine Hull insurance, which covers our boats and engines. Again, exclusions apply.
SRA insurance will also protect trip leaders and participants against legal action against them, in situations where they acted in a reasonable fashion. SRA insurance will not, however, protect a trip leader, or any member, if they are found to be civilly or criminally negligent.
SRA insurance does not provide coverage for non-members, even if they have paid the non-member fee to participate.
SRA insurance does not appear to provide any cover towards the cost of emergency evacuation.
Any insurance claims should be submitted in writing to the SRA within three weeks of the incident in order to meet the requirement that the SRA submit the claim to the insurer within 30 days of the incident.
In summary, while the ANUSC, its members and activities are covered by SRA insurance, that coverage is not anywhere near as extensive as typical private health insurance.
All participants in ANUSC activities should be advised to of the important limitations on SRA insurance and advised to independently assess their need for private health insurance in the unlikely event of personal injury. All participants, with or without private health insurance, are advised that they are participating at their own risk.