New York State
Insurance Department


ISSUED: 1/08/2003

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES SNOWMOBILE COVERAGE TO BE OFFERED BY NORTHFIELD
Comprehensive Coverage Will Be Added to Policies In-force and Offered to Renewal and Uninsured Clubs

          Governor George E. Pataki today announced that the Insurance Department has secured comprehensive insurance coverage for New York’s snowmobile clubs. The new agreement with Northfield Insurance Company will affect policies in-force, up for renewal and clubs seeking insurance.

          "Today’s announcement is the result of a collaboration between the Governor’s Office, Insurance Department, Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, the Department of Environmental Conservation, Department of Transportation and the Office of General Services," said Pataki.

          "We sincerely appreciate the cooperation that Northfield Insurance provided in restoring the viability of the snowmobile trail liability market in New York State. I would also like to acknowledge the efforts of New York Central Mutual Insurance Company President Dan Robinson, General Re/General Star, The Cool Insuring Agency, the Colonial Agency and the Independent Insurance Agents Association of New York," said Superintendent of Insurance Gregory V. Serio. "The insurance leaders, among others, recognized the time sensitivity and importance of this issue and were ready and willing to assist in its resolution."

          "We are extremely grateful for the efforts of Superintendent Serio and the Insurance Department and the successful partnership among agencies to resolve this issue of coverage for snowmobile clubs across the state," said State Parks Commissioner Bernadette Castro. "New York is home to some of the best snowmobiling in the country, with nearly 9,000 miles of scenic trails to be enjoyed by outdoor enthusiasts. As a result of today's actions, clubs and their riders can safely return to the trails, taking advantage of this exceptional winter weather and the many tourism opportunities this cold-weather sport generates for our local communities."

          "The quick resolution of this issue once again proves Governor Pataki’s strong commitment to outdoor recreation and the vital role snowmobiling plays in many upstate communities," Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Erin M. Crotty said. "The cooperative effort to preserve this important winter activity will ensure that snowmobilers continue to have access to some of the best trails in North America during the peak of the season."

          "Thanks to Governor Pataki and our partners at the State Insurance Department, State Parks, OGS and DEC, snowmobile clubs throughout New York State can continue to safely operate on all of the Empire State's scenic snowmobile trails," said NYSDOT Commissioner Joseph H. Boardman. "We encourage everyone operating snowmobiles this season to play it safe, drive responsibly, and watch out for cars and pedestrians traveling on or crossing state highways."

          Northfield Insurance will offer this comprehensive coverage to all policies in-force and all uninsured clubs and clubs whose policies are expiring.

          "This is great news for snowmobilers and all of New York State," said Serio. "Snowmobiling is big business in New York, creating employment opportunities, tourism revenue and most importantly, providing winter recreation to New Yorkers and visitors. Any club which has already secured coverage with Northfield will be receiving written confirmation from Northfield directly of this additional coverage. Those clubs that are seeking this additional coverage should contact the New York State Snowmobile Association for information. The Department’s Consumer Services Bureau, (518) 474-4555, stands ready to assist the New York State Snowmobile Association with any questions or problems that may arise."


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