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21 The survey instrument illustrates that small airport oper- ators do not change liability limits from year to year, as large and medium airport operators are prone to do. Specifically, large airport operator respondents adjust limits upward owing to exposures, affordability, and broker recommenda- tion. Medium airport operators increase limits because of affordability, but do not cite exposures or broker recommen- dation as influences in this decision. Property Limits The survey did not inquire about property limits purchased. The issue of limits is much more complex for property insur- ance than for liability insurance and comparisons are dif- ficult. Because the exposure is determined by the value of the property at risk, individual circumstances at each airport FIGURE 5 Reasons for changing or reviewing liability limits by facility vary greatly. Not all property needs to be insured. airport operator size. Large property holdings invite the use of "loss limits" rather than insuring to the value of the entire property; the larger Cost and exposure drive large airport operator respon- the holdings get, the less likely a total loss or loss to a high dents to make changes in liability limits. Some also indi- percentage of the holdings. cated that the recommendation of their broker may prompt a change in limits. Medium airport operators indicated cost, Although the study could have surveyed the processes by broker recommendation, and exposure (in that order) as which airport operators make decisions about property insur- forces motivating a change in insurance limits. ance, the detail required for any meaningful analysis put the issue beyond the scope of a general inquiry about insurance- Small airport operator respondents identified exposure purchasing practices and would have required many more and cost as factors that might prompt a change in limits; survey questions that would have made this survey unwieldy. however, two of the seven small airport operator respondents revealed that their facility purchases the same liability limits It is important to note the variety of types of coverage every year (no change). bought by different airport operators and that drawing any conclusions about the bases for insurance-buying decisions Furthermore, medium and small airport operator respon- is subject to many variables. For example, the purchase of dents also reported relying on broker recommendations low-deductible coverage for workers' compensation could when selecting insurance limits, whereas large airport oper- be the result of the requirement for a particular airport oper- ators rely less on such recommendations. ator to participate in a state fund. As noted in one of the responses to our interviews, one jurisdiction provided that Increasing Liability Limits when a public entity buys insurance coverage in excess of the statutory tort limits, it waives those limitations. This results Approximately 47% of all survey respondents indicated in a decision on limit selection that comes more from a legal that they have not increased liability limits within the past 3 perspective than from a risk management perspective. years. For those airport operators that have, most indicated that increased liability limits were affordable, and this fac- tor prompted a change in the airport operator's buying prac- INTERVIEW RESULTS--DEDUCTIBLES AND LIMITS tice. Others increase liability limits because of a greater loss exposure or owing to a recommendation from the airport The interview questions did not ask specifically about operator's broker. deductibles and limits.