Old Mutual, the oldest insurer in the country, has claimed that it will soon the first local insurance group to deploy drones to assist with insurance claims.
Old Mutual iWYZE, underwritten by Old Mutual Insure, a South African short-term insurer, will use the drones, together with drone mapping technology and photogrammetry, in its operating model.
In a statement, the insurer says after a rigorous two-year planning and pre-registration process, it recently passed the operational audit and demonstration flights required by the South African Civil Aviation Authority and is in the final certification phase of obtaining its remotely-piloted aircraft systems operator licence.
Ms Christell Coleman, insurance expert at Old Mutual Insure, said, “The application of drone technology in our business is an empowering game changer – it will significantly improve our risk assessments, underwriting and quantification of assets through improved data collection, field assessments, high-quality photos, videos and analysis.”
“Drone operations will further reduce our operational, safety and fraud risks; fast-track and improve claims adjudication and processing; cut operational costs through enhanced efficiency and ultimately elevate our customer experience,” she said.
“The technological advances that drone solutions offer for agricultural catastrophe and storm damage assessments are extensive.”
She added, “We’ve identified exciting opportunities which hold the potential of significant cost savings and return on investment in our domestic assessment, surveying and agricultural business units.”