MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court (SC) denied the petition of Ayala Land Incorporated to claim insurance coverage for the damage it incurred from the explosion at Glorietta 2 (G2) mall in 2007.
The SC’s 1st Division upheld the decisions of the Court of Appeals and the Regional Trial Court that said Ayala Land cannot recover from its policy with Standard Insurance because “the loss or damage of the property insured was caused by an excluded peril under the policy.” (READ: Glorietta blast, 6 years after)
What would become known as the Glorietta blast of 2007 happened on October 19, when a large explosion ripped through the second section of the Makati mall. Police reports said 11 died and around 130 were injured.
There are two theories as to the cause of the blast. For the police, the military, and the government, a methane buildup at the basement of a restaurant caused the explosion. Ayala Land said it was a bomb explosion. (READ: Bomb? Gas? Remember the Glorietta blast?)
The court noted that Ayala Land’s policy states that Standard Insurance would compensate the mall owner “in any sudden and accidental physical destruction or damage of its property except if the damage or destruction was caused by an excluded risk.”
Under “excluded risks” are pollution, war, invasion, act of foreign enemy, hostilities, or warlike operations, mutiny, and acts of terrorism.
“Here, Standard Insurance has discharged its burden by proving that the destruction of the G2 was caused by an excluded peril,” declared the Court.
The Court said it was Ayala Land which maintained that, “as found by its own investigators…the explosion was caused by an explosive device, which constitute as an act of terrorism.”
The decision noted that Ayala Land’s abandoning the “act of terrorism” theory and “suddenly claim that the explosion was not caused by an explosive device…is merely an afterthought that cannot be considered by this Court.”
Besides, the SC said, even if the blast was caused by methane and diesel vapor buildup at the basement of the mall, “pollution of whatever cause is also an excluded peril under its policy with Standard Insurance.” – Rappler.com