Tag Archives: airsports

AIB Talk Motorhomes

We interviewed Kirby from AIB Insurance, a motorhome, campervan and RV specialist to talk about the latest happenings in the world of insurance:

Are you seeing anything interesting with Motorhome and Camper claims?

The last 24 months have been challenging times for insurers with motorhome, RV’s and camper thefts on the increase. Take North Wales for example – police recently revealed that 30 vehicles worth over a million pounds had been stolen over the past 16 months. They believe thieves in that area were mainly targeting Fiat Ducato and Peugeot Boxer motorhomes using technology widely available on the Internet to override the manufacturer’s security measures that included the electronic immobiliser.

On a national basis though, Ford continues to be the vehicle of choice for most thieves.  Our insurance partner Ageas Insurance tells me Ford manufactured motorhomes make up less than 6% of their motorhome book but the theft rate is ridiculously high. There is no pattern as to where the motorhomes are kept, how long they have been owned or the level of security measures as they’ve seen a variety of scenarios. They have had over £350,000 worth of Fords stolen last year alone which is why they took the decision to work out what model ranges/years of manufacture were affected and decline them.

According to the Association of British Insurers (ABI), motor theft claims have increased by 20% in 2019 and motor theft claims paid by insurers in the first quarter of this year were at their highest for any quarter since 2012 with a payment made relating to vehicle crime every eight minutes. The ABI claims that the increase is in part being driven by keyless car crime whereby hi-tech criminals are able to bypass keyless technology in as little as 20 seconds. This would certainly seem to be the case with a large number of motorhome thefts as an increasing number are being stolen when they are parked on driveways.

Has this seen the cost of insurance increase?

Historically, motorhomes have been rated on three main factors: year, engine size and value (ignoring left hand drives, imports and modified vehicles etc.).  Over the last 12 months, three major motorhome insurers, Aviva, Ageas and Markerstudy have taken the unusual steps to load the premium further or even decline specific years of manufacturer, especially Ford.

Generally, motorhome and campervan insurance rates have remained stagnant apart from specific manufacturers. DIY conversions tend to cost more to insure than a coach built one.

So how can owners prevent a vehicle being stolen?

If your motorhome is stolen, having the right insurance policy in place will mean that you can at least have the peace of mind of knowing that you’ll be compensated financially for your loss. However, an insurance payout can never compensate you for the inconvenience and disruption that vehicle theft causes.

The good news is that most theft is opportunistic and thieves generally don’t like to work too hard. So, if they see a motorhome fitted with wheel locks, steering or handbrake locks or wheel clamps, it may be enough to put them off.  Of course, you can go further by installing an alarm, immobiliser, a tracking device or even installing PIR lights trained on your parking space that illuminate when they sense movement.

What should people look out for when insuring a motorhome, RV or campervan?

It is vital, that you take out appropriate motorhome insurance and select a policy that will cover all your needs.

Motorhome insurance is not like car insurance, it requires specialist knowledge and as such, you should speak to a specialist motorhome insurance provider. Most specialists will provide additional European cover, additional contents cover and cover for gas cylinders, generators and awnings.

We would encourage you to purchase legal expenses as, if you find yourself in a dispute, legal fees can be expensive. Likewise, breakdown cover can be challenging as non-specialist providers may place a height, length or weight restriction on the vehicle they cover.

Another thing to mention when buying cover, is the level of windscreen glass cover that the specific policy your purchasing provides. Many insurers restrict the windscreen cover to £500-£1000 but an owner of an A-Class could be left short and should seek insurers that provide unlimited glass cover.

The motorhome market continues to grow especially relating to the sale of higher value models that cost over £100,000 and that represents a different risk for insurers if they go missing.

What is happening in the classic car world – are vehicles still going up in value?

The classic vehicle market is renowned for its stability and consistency and the VW campervan is a prime example of that. Over the past 10 years, classic vehicle values have been consistently going up, outperforming just about everything I can think of apart from vintage wine. I’d argue that classic vehicles are a better investment here too as it’s possible to use them without instantly destroying their value!

That said, at the top end of the market such as Ferrari, Lamborghini and the like, it looks as though we’re finally seeing the pace slowing and interest levels cooling.

One element of this could be uncertainty. When it comes to high value classics, it’s a global market. Investors may simply be less prepared to spend big at a time of trade wars and uncertain future trading arrangements.

The classic vehicle market is forever evolving as new cars become classics as each year passes.

What’s your favourite classic within the motorhome and campervan arena?

I love the 1967 BMC Princess – it looks bonkers. Whilst it looks like a DIY conversion, it was actually coach-built on a Vanden Plas Princess chassis but was unusually modern for it’s time enjoying power steering and an automatic transmission.  Another favourite would be the VW T25 hightop campervan. Again, it looks so cool and I can imagine myself sitting in it with a hot cup of tea on a cold day looking out over the ocean.

Paraglider Achieves Guinness World Record

Those of you who enjoy paragliding will no doubt be interested to read that an estate agent by the name of James Du Pavey from Market Drayton has featured in the Guinness World Records for the  “Fastest journey from Land’s End to John-O’- Groats by powered paraglider”. His airborne trip took place from the 8th to the 9th July 2019 and took 1 day 12 hours and 19 minutes.

He actually took off from John O’Groats on the 8th July 2019 at 3.30am completing the trip in just over 36 hours. During the epic journey in the paraglider he reached a height of 10,000 feet. Unfortunately, he had to make three emergency landings but was unharmed. Obviously he needed to stop on a number of occasions to refuel during the 870 mile trip.  No doubt somewhat concerningly, his engine ceased to function when he was a mere six miles from Land’s End but he still made it. He was ably supported by a two man ground crew during the lengthy trip.

You will be pleased to read that James Du Pavey has raised more than £12,000 for the Donna Louise Hospice for children and young people that is located in Stoke on Trent as a result of this paragliding world record breaking journey. Those monies will obviously be put to extremely good use by the hospice.

We are sure that our paragliding clients will no doubt like to join the staff here at AIB Insurance in congratulating James Du Pavey for such a wonderful achievement. He must have been absolutely exhausted by the time he eventually came down to land for the final occasion at the end of the journey.

If you are looking to get into paragliding for the first time or are a veteran, why not get in touch with us here at AIB Insurance on 02380 268 351 and one of our experienced team will be pleased to discuss your insurance needs in relation to this airborne activity and obtain a competitive quotation for your perusal without any obligation.

Dogs That “Go Walkies” In The Sky

Dog owners no doubt take their four-legged friends out on a regular basis for a walk whether it is around the housing estate on which they live or pop them in the car and drive to a country park. However, it will not come as a surprise to hear that very few dogs will get the opportunity to go paragliding with their owner. Well, we have recently heard about a couple of dogs that have done that in different parts of the world.

Over in Sydney, Australia, a paraglider by the name of Justin Elliott has recently taken his pooch called Snickers for his first flight up in the air attached to his paraglider. He has owned the dog for about one year and it is a lovely looking cross between a Golden Retriever and a Poodle.

Apparently, Mr Elliott and Snickers took off from what is called Long Reef Headland that is located at the Northern Beaches that is a few miles to the north east of Sydney.

Snickers had his own harness and was attached just below Mr Elliott. A video of the event can be seen on the Internet that you may wish to watch. You will no doubt be pleased to read that both Mr Elliott and Snickers made a safe landing.

A little closer to home, we have heard about a Cockapoo by the name of Henry who is four years of age whose owner is called Amy Jones from Wales. Apparently, Henry has been paragliding over mountains in North Wales for over three years and has even taken to the sky in a paraglider in the Alps. He sounds like a seasoned participant in the sport.

If any of our clients have any similar experiences with their pets taking to the skies then we would love to hear about them here at AIB Insurance.

Army Parachutist Survives 5,000 Foot Jump That Goes Wrong

Those of you who enjoy the thrill of parachuting will be aware of the dangers and that on rare occasions things can go wrong. Well, that would appear what happened to an Army Parachute Display team member recently here in the UK.

The parachutist, who has not been named, was parachuting over Eastbourne in East Sussex and it was intended that those taking part would land in the sea. Unfortunately, this particular parachutist seemed to get into difficulty whilst participating in a 5,000 foot jump and ended up descending to dry land. Miraculously, the person involved is said to have only suffered a few minor grazes. Apparently, the St Johns Ambulance Service and the police provided assistance.

Let’s hope that the person involved makes a full recovery and is soon taking to the skies again.

Coincidentally, it has also been reported that a female skydiver near Quebec, Canada who is 30 years of age has been involved in a skydiving accident that also involved a jump from a similar height. Apparently, not only the main parachute but also the reserve one failed to open and she plunged to the ground landing in trees. Fortunately, she has survived but has a number of broken bones that will probably not come as a surprise to our readers. We wish her a speedy recovery.

Here at AIB Insurance, we have many years experience in arranging specialist cover for a number of airborne sports including the likes of skydiving and parachuting. If you are looking to take up the sport or your existing cover is shortly due to be renewed then why not get in touch with us on 02380 268 351. One of our experienced members of staff will be pleased to discuss your insurance requirements in detail and provide a bespoke competitive quotation for your consideration without any obligation. We look forward to hearing from you.

Young Briton Wins Gold At European Paragliding Championships

Theo Warden Our paragliding clients will be pleased to hear about a young man’s success at the FAI European Paragliding Championships that took place in July in Montalegre, Portugal. His name is Theo Warden and he is only 19 years of age. Apparently, he is one of the youngest people to win a gold medal in the history of this competition.

Around 150 of the best paragliders from 28 European countries took part in the annual event so there was obviously an awful lot of competition. This is the 15th one of these championships that took place over a 10-day period. There were 8 tasks covering distances ranging from 53km to 93km.

It was a close run thing with Theo Warden accumulating 5,348 points. However, in second place was Torsten Siegal from Germany who finished on 5,346 points – only 2 points behind the winner. The third placed contestant was B         iagio Alberto Vitale from Italy who finished with 5,328 points – only 20 points behind Theo Warden.

Paragliding Apparently, Theo Warden only started paragliding at the age of 14 so he has done remarkably well to have reached the level that he has in the space of 5 years. In 2015, at the British Open in St Andre Les Alpes, France he was ranked 59th. In 2016, he was ranked in 25th place at the British Open in Mantelgas, Portugal. In 2017, he was ranked 15th at the British Open in the Malverns. In 2017, at the World Cup Superfinal in Colombia, he was ranked in 15th place.

It is also worth mentioning that, along with Lawrie Noctor, it was not too long ago that he broke the UK declared tandem paragliding record having flown a distance of 71km.

Well done to Theo Warden from all of us here at AIB Insurance and we wish him every success in future competitions.

Whether you are an experienced paraglider or are getting into the sport for the first time, why not give us a call on 02380 268 351 and speak with a friendly, knowledgeable member of our staff about arranging suitable, competitive insurance to provide you with complete peace of mind.

Paraglider Flies Amongst Thousands Of Birds

ParagliderApparently, until recently, no person has ever been fortunate enough to fly within a flock of birds. Well, that all changed quite recently when a paraglider by the name of Horacio Llorens who just happens to be a world champion in this exiting aviation sport was able to fulfill one of his ambitions and took to the skies to fly amongst a flock of starlings.

He was able to do this in Denmark where each year thousands of starlings gather and fly through the air in huge flocks. It is known as the “Black Sun” and it is a spectacular sight.

Mr Llorens who is 35 years of age and is from Spain has been paragliding for 17 years and has always wanted to experience flying with birds. In order to do so, he was able to gain the permission of the Ministry of the Environment in Denmark.

Of course there are no doubt many paragliders who have been able to fly in close proximity to a small number of birds but it is believed that nobody has been able to fly amongst thousands of birds. He must have felt like he was one of them as he flew his electric powered paraglider as dusk was happening.

The starlings fly from Norway to Denmark where the climate is warmer and where, when they fly around in a flock, there are so many of them that they make the sky darker. There are no doubt many people who make special trips to witness the “Black Sun” from the ground. However, those people were probably very envious of Mr Llorens as he flew amongst the starlings. There was even an ornithologist present to make sure that the starlings were safe when Mr Llorens took to the sky.Paraglider

Congratulations to this paraglider for achieving one of his life-long ambitions.

If you are in need of airsports insurance why not give us a call at AIB Insurance on 02380 268 351 and speak with a member of our friendly staff who will happily arrange a quotation.

Flying Car Crosses The English Channel

PegasusThere are numerous ways to travel from France to England that involve crossing the English Channel such as by ferry, plane, helicopter, Eurostar on a high speed train or having your car transported through the Channel Tunnel. There may be some of you that have made the trip in a hot air balloon or a paraglider but has anyone seen a flying car make the journey?

Well, that is exactly what happened in the last few days. A French pilot by the name of Bruno Vezzoli has safely completed a 59 kilometre flight from Ambleteuse that is located a few kilometres south west of Calais and landed in a village not too far from Dover in a flying car called Pegasus.

The name Pegasus was no doubt chosen as, in Greek Mythology, there was a white winged stallion by that name. The vehicle looks a bit like a beach buggy with a motor, paragliding propeller and extremely large parachute. Quite simply, it appears to be a powered paraglider but you are actually sitting inside the buggy. As a result, this no doubt results in the conditions being a little more pleasant than normal for the pilot.

The biggest concern was probably if Bruno Vezzoli had to make an emergency landing whilst crossing the English Channel and ended up in the water. Therefore, some sea rescue equipment was stored on board but we are pleased to be able to confirm that fortunately they were not required.

The air-borne vehicle is capable of traveling at a speed of as much as 80 kmph so it did not take too long to complete the trip. So, we would just like to say well done to Pegasusthis intrepid gentleman.

Here at AIB Insurance we have many years experience in arranging quality and bespoke, cover for many airborne sports. So, why not give us a call on 02380 268 351 and speak with one of the team to discuss your requirements and obtain a free, no-obligation quotation.

Google Street View Of The Vista Seen By A Skydiver – A World First

The Vista

Many of you will have taken the opportunity to take a look at locations both in the UK and overseas by using Google Street View and you have no doubt found this to be very useful. The vast majority of those images will have been taken by photographers stood on terra firma.

Well, a photographer by the name of Alex Mather has got together with Skydive Abel Tasman that arranges skydives in New Zealand to become the first person in the world to produce on Google Street View some wonderful views seen by skydivers. In addition, photographs were also taken of the whole skydiving experience from start to finish. The plane flew up to around 16,500 feet at which point the tandem skydivers jumped from the plane to start their descent above the Abel Tasman National Park.

Photographs were taken of the fantastic scenery on both islands including mountains, forests and the sea. It has to be said that the views are breathtaking. In addition to taking photographs, a video has also been produced showing the tandem skydivers in action.Skydiving

A great deal of work obviously went into producing this Google Street View with it taking 5 days to complete. Congratulations to Mr Mather and Skydive Abel Tasman for what has been achieved. It will be interesting to see if Mr Mather partakes in some other interesting photographic projects that appear on Google Street View in the future.

Here at AIB Insurance, we have arranged competitively priced, quality insurance for a number of skydivers on many occasions. So, if you would like to receive a no-obligation quotation, why not give us a call on 02380 268 351 and speak with one of our friendly, experienced members of staff who will be pleased to help you and answer any questions that you may have about this type of cover.

AIB Launch New Website

AIB would like to offer you a warm welcome to our new website. For the last few months we have been working with website designers APB Media to pull this all together.

We thought it was finally time to revamp the old site and replace it with a slicker and more user friendly version. This new format gives us a fantastic new platform to build on and continue to grow and develop our service. We know how busy people are in these modern times, but please have a look around the new site and see what you think – we always welcome feedback.

So what’s new? Well, we have refreshed and modernised the content, added the ability to link to social media sites, as well as producing a fresher and more dynamic “latest news” section which will keep you up to date on what we are up to, the industry we work in and any other useful insights we feel are clients would find interesting. The biggest innovation, however, is how easy it is to navigate through our variety of products available.

Building the new website took almost two months and started with a competition to design our new logo. This was won by Pro Design who is now the lucky recipient of £200.

AIB are renowned for building long lasting relationships and believe in taking the time to get to know our clients and then tailor the right policy for those individual needs.

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