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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Rufus stolen - is safely back ... theft insurance

Underwriters evaluate the risk and the premium is based on exposure, the probable chance of occurrence, frequency and severity.  Most Insurers offer coverage against Burglary and Theft risks.  From an Insurance angle, it is not the value of the goods that alone that matters.  Goods that can be sold easily in retail and grey markets [eg. Cigarette packs / batteries] are bad risks as compared to those which cannot be sold easily [eg. Special medicines].  Smaller items with high value [eg.,diamond rings] are worser risk than bulky items like machinery. Again those who have ready market in retail [eg mobile phones] are  bad risks as compared to those which cannot be sold so easily [say precision machinery].  In contrast, exhibition items / objects with antique value are higher risks unless proper security arrangements are in place. 

Depending on the above and other various factors such as location, availability of armed guards, the weight and dimensions of the subject matter, the precautions taken by the Insured, past loss experience of the Insured, experience of the Insurer in respect of similar goods  - Insurers fix the rate, if they decide to offer burglary insurance. 

When it comes to payment by the Insurer,  the value is not representative of  what the burglar or the offender can realize with the stolen object [many a times, they would be sold for a song or even may not be realizable at all].  The sound of principle of indemnity would ‘place the insured in the position he was prior to the loss’ and thus the monetary value of loss to the policy holder. 

It’s July and much is happening at Wimbledon – While rain washed out play on all other courts at the All England Club, defending champion Novak Djokovic had little trouble advancing to the quarterfinals at Wimbledon, beating fellow Serb Viktor Troicki 6-3, 6-1, 6-3  underneath the roof on Centre Court. The top-ranked Djokovic will next face the winner of Richard Gasquet and Florian Mayer, whose match was among those suspended for the day because of persistent rain at the All England Club. Federer struggled with a back problem still managed to win…..

Now this is another post on Wimbledon but not match update – it is about the theft that has left the people distressed.  Yes, theft of Rufus – a  well-known fixture at the south-west London club, with visitors often stopping to ask for photos.  Rufus even has his own Twitter account, but has not tweeted for a few days now.His last tweet was before Rafael Nadal's shock exit from the tournament, when he said: "Murray is through, Rafa is down 2-1 (!), Ward played brilliantly but lost to Mardy Fish, and Italy are beating Germany 1-0!".  Owner Imogen Davis, 25, said they were still in shock after Rufus' disappearance.  Rufus, who ??
Harris Hawk (Parabuteo unicinctus) formerly known as the Bay-winged Hawk or Dusky Hawk, is a medium-largebird of prey which breeds from the southwestern United States south to Chile and central Argentina. This bird is a popular species in falconry.  Harris Hawk is notable for its behavior of hunting cooperatively in "packs", consisting of family groups while most other raptors hunt in solitary.

Wimbledon, the premier most Tennis Championship would not need any elaboration – it is the oldest tournament and considered the most prestigious, being held at  All England Club in Wimbledon, London since 1877. It is one of the four Grand Slam tennis tournaments, the other three Majors being the Australian Open, French Open and US Open. Wimbledon is the only Major still played on grass, the game's original surface, which gave the game of lawn tennis its name. The tournament takes place over two weeks in late June and early July, culminating with the Ladies' and Gentlemen's Singles Final, scheduled respectively for the second Saturday and Sunday.

Coming back, Harris’ Hawk has a body length of 18 - 24 inches, a wingspan of 3 1/2 - 4 feet, and weighs 1 1/2 - 2 1/2 pounds. They search for their mammal, bird, and reptilian prey from a perch or as they are flying.  Harris’ Hawks are social birds. Some of the young will stay with the family unit up to 3 years and help raise subsequent broods and hunt cooperatively with the family. Harris' Hawks are popular birds used in the sport of falconry because of their group hunting style.

Rufus, which was stolen is a Harris hawk, who was used for keeping pigeons at bay during Wimbledon fortnight.  It was the bird that used to patrol the Court to deter pigeons.  Rufus, was stolen along with his cage overnight between Thursday and Friday from a car parked in Wimbledon.  A spokesman said Rufus was in the car parked on a private drive in Dunstall Road with the rear window open for ventilation.  Rufus has become a well-known fixture at the south-west London club, with visitors often stopping to ask for photos with the hawk.  Hawking was first introduced to the All England Club in 1999 as an environmentally-friendly method of pest control.  Pigeons are not the Harris Hawk's natural prey, and they are trained not to attack but to circle and fly around the courts to scare the birds.  Rufus was flown each morning and evening of the championships before and after play, but not during, to avoid any distraction.

Retrieval of stolen articles are rarity - Rufus, the Wimbledon hawk stolen by thieves, however,  has been found safe and well, police in London said late Sunday. He was handed in to an office of the national animal charity RSPCA in Putney, south west London, and is back in his owners' hands, police said.
photo courtesy :

Hopes were raised of finding him safe after the box was spotted abandoned just north of the tennis venue on Sunday afternoon. The news was confirmed on Rufus’ personal Twitter feed, which has been silent since his disappearance except for appeals for information.  The four-year-old American Harris Hawk will be back at work at the tennis club, where he deters pigeons, on Wednesday after his three-day ordeal.  But wiser from experience, the owners will keep him safely inside a house when he is not working

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.


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