Letter: One way to measure coal’s risk



Several recent letters have indicated our lack of knowledge about the health risks of additional coal moving though our communities.

Few, if any of us living here, have the expertise to evaluate the potential health risks. Fortunately, there is a way to get the necessary expertise at no cost to us.

The coal and railroad companies tell us that there are little to no health concerns. If they are correct, then they can find an insurance company to sell them a policy to cover the potential health concerns at a very low cost.

Insurance companies will make an independent assessment of the claims by the coal and railroad companies.

To do this evaluation, the insurance company will hire its own experts to do the evaluation. The insurance experts will price the policy according to their opinion of the risks.

In either case, we are protected from the potential cost of being wrong.

If the coal and railroad companies will not pay for the insurance, then they will be admitting that the health risks are not negligible and wish to pass the cost on to us.

Malcolm M. McCay