Insurance Chronology

From 1293 to 1998

  • 1293

    King Dinis, by royal letter dated 10th May 1293, approves an insurance Exchange (mutualism) to support losses resulting from the use of ships in maritime trade
  • 1297

    "Lay Confraternity of the Village of Beja"
  • 1375-1380

    King Dom Fernando I ordered the “Companhia das Naos"
  • 1397

    “The Council of boons men” of Oporto
  • 1402

    Sentence of the municipality of Oporto deciding to maintain the ships' Exchange
  • 1444

    Royal letter mentioning the existence of a Stock Exchange at the municipality of Setúbal
  • 1459

    Royal decree obliging foreigners to contribute to the Bruges Portuguese Stock Exchange
  • 1483

    Confirmation, by King Dom João II, of the commitment or statutes of the Brotherhood of the Flemings, which King Dom Afonso V had officially approved in 1472
  • 1520

    Arzila Insurance Exchange
  • 1529

    Creation of the task of Scribe Insurance and appointment of Brás Eanes
  • 1552

    "Tractatus de Assecurationibus et Sponsionibus Mercatorum" by Pedro de Santarém
  • 1573

    First insurance document made in Lisbon, about the loss of a venetian ship (Lisbon - Livorno)
  • 1573

    The House of Insurance
  • 1578

    Creation of the office of Insurance Broker and appointment of Gaspar de Faria
  • 1578-1580

    The death of King Dom Sebastião and the philippine domination
  • 1592

    Establishment of the Consulate Court, supervising the insurance and rights recoveries in its execution
  • 1640

    The Recovery of Portugal
  • 1755

    Destruction of the Insurance’s House in the Lisbon Earthquake
  • 1757

    King Dom José I limit to 5% per year the interest rates of the "maritime exchange or give money to risk"
  • 1758

    José Vienni and the proposal of the new House of Insurance
  • 1770

    The oldest known portuguese insurance policy
  • 1791

    Queen Dona Maria I officialized the Regulation of the Insurance's House of Lisbon, allowing the creation of new insurers
  • 1791-1808

    Several Insurance Companies are established
  • 1810

    Recognition of the legitimacy of the "Maritime Exchange"
  • 1820

    New Regulation of the Insurance's House of Lisbon
  • 1833

    Portuguese Commercial Code by José Ferreira Borges
  • 1834

    The Commercial Court began its activity
  • 1837

    Regulation of the Kingdom's Business Centers and the Brokerage Corporation
  • 1852

    Creation of the "Ministry of Public Works, Trade and Industry”
  • 1867

    Viscount of Seabra's Civil Code
  • 1888

    Veiga Beirão Commercial Code
  • 1907

    Government Decree laying the foundations for the exercise of insurance activity
  • 1910

    Establishment of the Republic in Portugal
  • 1913

    First law on accidents at work in Portugal
  • 1914-18

    Favourable market to the creation of Insurance Companies, authorised to cover the risk of war in the maritime branch
  • 1919

    Compulsory insurance "against disasters at work" for employees
  • 1929

    Creation of Insurance Inspection
  • 1932

    António Oliveira Salazar is nominated President of the Council of Ministers
  • 1934

    Creation of the Insurance Guild
  • 1934

    First Insurance Workers' Union
  • 1936

    First Collective Labor Contract for the Insurance Industry
  • 1939

    Provident Union Fund for Insurance Professionals
  • 1945

    The Insurance Industry in the Colonies
  • 1946

    Professional Wallet for Insurance Professionals
  • 1946

    Model Identity cards for the branch of Civil Liability
  • 1949

    Creation of the General Inspection of Credit and Insurance (Insurance Supervision in Portugal)
  • 1958

    Creation of the Portuguese Office of the International Automobile Insurance Certificate
  • 1962

    Creation of the National Insurance Fund for Professional Illnesses
  • 1968

    Marcelo Caetano succeeds António Oliveira Salazar as President of the Council of Ministers
  • 1971

    Establishment of the National Insurance Council. Insurance and Reinsurance Activity Regime
  • 1974

    The Armed Forces Movement carries out a coup d'état that puts an end to the "Estado Novo"
  • 1975

    Nationalisation of insurance companies
  • 1975

    Extinction of the General Inspection of Credit and Insurance
  • 1975

    Extinction of the Insurance Guild
  • 1976

    Creation of the National Insurance Institute
  • 1979

    In the Insurance restructuring of the Public Sector
  • 1979

    Compulsory car Liability Insurance and Creation of the Automotive Guarantee Fund
  • 1979

    Creation of the General Inspection of Insurance
  • 1982

    Creation of the Portuguese Insurance Association
  • 1982

    Creation of the Portuguese Insurance Institute
  • 1983

    Openness of insurance to national private initiative
  • 1984

    Private initiative in the insurance activity
  • 1985

    General Contract Clauses
  • 1986

    Portugal becomes a Member of the EEC - European Economic Community
  • 1987

    Spin-off of Insurance Companies into specialised companies
  • 1995

    Transparency rules in insurance activity
  • 1998

    General scheme of insurance companies
  • 1293
  • 1297
  • 1375
  • 1397
  • 1402
  • 1444
  • 1459
  • 1483
  • 1520
  • 1529
  • 1552
  • 1573
  • 1573
  • 1578
  • 1578
  • 1592
  • 1640
  • 1755
  • 1757
  • 1758
  • 1770
  • 1791
  • 1791
  • 1810
  • 1820
  • 1833
  • 1834
  • 1837
  • 1852
  • 1867
  • 1888
  • 1907
  • 1910
  • 1913
  • 1914
  • 1919
  • 1929
  • 1932
  • 1934
  • 1934
  • 1936
  • 1939
  • 1945
  • 1946
  • 1946
  • 1949
  • 1958
  • 1962
  • 1968
  • 1971
  • 1974
  • 1975
  • 1975
  • 1975
  • 1976
  • 1979
  • 1979
  • 1979
  • 1982
  • 1982
  • 1983
  • 1984
  • 1985
  • 1986
  • 1987
  • 1995
  • 1998

Events and Disasters

“Human history is increasingly becoming a race between education and catastrophe.”

(Herbert George Wells)

The principles of mutualism must always be considered in preventing and responding to risk in individuals, families, businesses … in the dynamics of society. The insurance is a faithful depository of premiums, the insurance will return it to the company for compensation for misfortune.

Natural disasters accounted for about 78% of the damage suffered between 1970 and 2011, against 22% of the insured damage caused by human intervention, which includes the September 2001 Terrorist Attack, classified as the fourth largest accident since records.

In the recent past, 2011 was for the international insurance industry the second largest year in terms of accidents caused by natural disasters, only behind 2005.

Portugal has several natural disaster events in its history, but the risk of seismic phenomena is the one that causes the greatest concern with the destructive potential, even with different levels of risk among the various regions.

The scourge of forest fires has periodically devastated the Portuguese forest and, more recently, the storm that hit the island of Madeira, which was considered one of the 50 greatest natural disasters to have occurred throughout the world, with 43 people killed and the insurance market supporting compensation more than 135 million euros.

To praise the increasing robustness of the insurance companies that have responded with greater speed and commitment, allocating extraordinary resources to enable the settlement of the losses claimed.

1415 – The Black Death and the Death of Queen Filipa of Lencastre
1505 – Typhoid Epidemic
1531, 26th January – The second largest earthquake to hit Lisbon
1569 – The Great Prague come to Portugal
1666, 2nd September – Great Fire of London, England
1755, 1st November – 1755 Earthquake
1863, 19th November – A fire destroyed the Council Chambers
1875 – The Shipwreck of the SS Cadiz and the “Hunting Knife”
1909, 23rd April – The Benavente Earthquake
1912, 14th April – Wreck of the Titanic
1918 – The Pneumonic or Spanish Flu
1941, 15th February – The Cyclone of 1941
1959, 13th August – Large fire destroys São Domingos Church in Lisbon
1961, 23rd January – Kidnapping of the Portuguese “Santa Maria” bellboy
1963, 20th March – Fire and wreck of coastal ship “Tagus”
1964, 1st December – Fire at the Teatro Dona Maria II, in Lisbon
1967, 25th November – Floods in and around Lisbon
1969, 28th February – Earthquake in Portugal
1977, 19th November – Madeira Island Air Accident
1985, 11th September – The Alcafache railway accident
1988, 25th August – Great fire in Chiado
2010, 20th February – Alluvium in Madeira Island
2017, 17th June – Pedrogão Grande’s Big Fire
2018, 13th October – Leslie Storm

1415 – The Black Death and the Death of Queen Filipa of Lencastre

The Black Death devastated Portugal, especially the cities of Lisbon and Porto, when preparations were underway for the conquest of Ceuta.
On the eve of the expedition’s departure, Queen Filipa of Lencastre died on 19th July 1415, at Odivelas Monastery, victim of this epidemic.
Sources:
Book ”Por Terras de El-Rei D. Dinis” by Maria Máxima Vaz
Blog “História de Portugal”
Picture extracted from “VIX” – #26 Peste Negra

 

1505 – Typhoid Epidemic

Between 1505 and 1507, the population of Lisbon was the victim of an epidemic, of typhoid origin. King Manuel I and the Court went to Almeirim to escape the epidemic, but the epidemic ended up deterring it and was considered one of the deadliest that spread throughout the country. The number of deaths due to the disease was so high that, in a letter dated 20th March 1506, he was ordered to build two cemeteries outside the city gates.
Source:
Municipal Archive of C. M. Lisboa, Cadernos 2ª série, pág. 254 Lisboa na confluência das rotas comerciais: efeitos na saúde pública (séculos XV a XVII)” by António Augusto Salgado de Barros
Picture extracted from “dn/Fotogaleria”

1531, 26th January – The second largest earthquake to hit Lisbon

This strong earthquake will have destroyed about 2,000 houses in the Lisbon and Tagus Valley region. It is estimated that 30,000 people died.
This catastrophe was so serious and violent that it reached the regions of Santarém, Almeirim, Azambuja and Vila Franca de Xira. In some areas of Alentejo, Beira Litoral and southern Spain, there was also damage.
Source:
Official website “RTP Ensina/Temas
Picture extracted from “diasdoano”

1569 – The Great Prague come to Portugal

Since 1563, the Black Death has been in Europe, reaching the areas of Zaragoza, Logronho and Navarra, Bilbao, Burgos, and other regions north of Meseta and west. It then arrived in Seville, Galicia and finally Lisbon, irradiating to some peripheral areas.
Upon arriving in Lisbon, he did so with exceptional violence, causing 60 thousand deaths.
The epidemic lasted from July 1569 until the spring of 1570, starting its decline.
Source:
Municipal Archive of C. M. Lisboa, Cadernos 2ª série, pág. 254/5 Lisboa na confluência das rotas comerciais: efeitos na saúde pública (séculos XV a XVII)” by António Augusto Salgado de Barros
Picture extracted from blog of John Soares “…Histórias – E Outras Coisas…”

1666, 2nd September – Great Fire of London, England

On 2nd September 1666, a great fire broke out in the city of London.
It began at Thomas Farynor’s bakery, the baker of King Charles II. For four days the fire got out of control and resulted in the destruction of a third of the city of London.
With a reality of destruction of 13,000 houses, 87 churches, St. Paul’s Cathedral, London Stock Exchange, and Royal Palace.
The fire proved devastating because there were no firemen acting in an organized way and when it was to pay damages there was no insurance.
The State limited itself to creating the Fire Court to arbitrate conflicts between people, benefiting the richest and advising the underprivileged to go and live outside the city.
Nicholas Barbon economist and doctor had the notion of the business opportunity and created a company called Fire Office (1667), to insure the risk of fire on real estate. The genesis of the modern insurance industry was launched.
Fire Office (1667) created the first fire insurance plates (now fire branch) that were offered to those who contracted fire risk. The fire insurance plates were placed above the entrance door to the insured property, identifying which insurance company and even marking the policy number.
At the time, there were no fire brigades in London, so each British insurer hired a set of boatmen (brigade) who, in their daily routine, made the crossing of people and goods between the two banks of the River Thames. In case of fire, the insurance company was identified by the insurance plate and the boatmen, paid by that insurance company, were called to put out the fire.

 

Source
Picture extracted from “blog da arquitetura”
Model made during London’s Burning festival, reproducing the Great Fire of London

1755, 1st November – 1755 Earthquake

An earthquake of great magnitude, estimated an intensity between 8.7 and 9 on the Richter scale, destroyed part of the city of Lisbon, especially the downtown area. It also hit other areas of the country, such as Setúbal and the entire coast of the Algarve. In Spain, to the south, it reached Seville and left its mark on the wall of the city of Carmona.
It was one of the deadliest earthquakes in history, marking what some historians call the prehistory of modern Europe. This natural disaster was the most destructive in recent centuries to hit Portugal.
The earthquake was followed by a tsunami, which is believed to have reached the height of 20 meters, as well as several fires in the city, having made about 10 thousand dead, it is not known for sure.
It had a great political and socio-economic impact on Portuguese society in the 18th century, giving rise to the first scientific studies of the effect of an earthquake in a large area, thus marking the birth of modern seismology.
In 1755, there was still no insurance to cover the losses resulting from the loss of buildings and their fillings. The personal losses were borne by everyone.
The reconstruction of downtown Lisbon was on behalf of the State, where the Marquis of Pombal had the city plan redesigned by architects Carlos Mardel, Manuel da Maia and Eugénio dos Santos.
Source
Picture extracted from Santo Tirso TV”

1863, 19th November – A fire destroyed the Council Chambers

A violent fire broke out at the palace where the Lisbon City Hall, the headquarters of the Bank of Portugal, the Fidelidade Insurance Company, the Lezírias Company, the Vapores do Tejo and the headquarters of the Contrato do Tabaco were installed.
The property was not isolated, it was confined by the North, in Capelistas street, today Comércio street, what caused the destruction, total, of the building.
By the way, after the 1863 fire, the insurance company Fidelidade moved to the first floor of the building next to the Corpo Santo Church in Lisbon.
Remember that the first headquarters of Fidelidade had been temporarily in Flores street 6 and then in 1836 in a Nova de El-Rei  street 94, however the biggest movement was in the Comércio Square  where it had an office on the site of the old Insurance House. In 1848, they moved to Arsenal Street 60.
Source:
Book “Grupo Segurador Fidelidade/ 150 anos de História/ 1835-1985” – CHAPAS Club collection
Picture extracted from the book “Grupo Segurador Fidelidade/ 150 anos de História/ 1835-1985” – CHAPAS Club collection

 

1875 – The Shipwreck of the SS Cadiz and the “Hunting Knife”

In the history of insurance in Portugal are several episodes that enrich it, namely one of the most emblematic – insurance and rescue of the “Hunting Knife”.
A magnificent jewel of Portuguese jewelry, carved in silver by the artist Rafael Zacarias da Costa, inspired by a certain ivory spatula belonging to King Dom Pedro V.
Rafael Zacarias da Costa devoted eleven years to its creation, from the time he cast it into wax until he finished it in silver, and he will have almost lost his vision.
The “Hunting Knife” is 63 cms long. On the handle and sheath can be seen 130 heads of different animals interlaced with rare skill; they are not piled up, as could be expected of such a great number of animals in such little room, they are artistically arranged. Here we have the boar hunted by the hounds and there the majestic lion with his thin mane, the tiger with his hooked claws, the panther, the stag, the graceful doe, the whole forming a group of rare beauty.
King Dom Fernando, to whom the purchase was destined, cannot reach agreement with the master Rafael Zacarias da Costa as to the value of the piece for which it was guarded by the gold merchant Estevam de Sousa, in Áurea street, Lisbon.
Not finding in Portugal who acquired it had as its destination the city of London, in which it was hoped to find a good buyer. To do this, a security of its value – 700 pounds – was made in the then well-respected Fidelidade Insurance Company.
On 9th May 1875, a new maritime tragedy occurred: The “Cadiz” steamer had lost its strength in the battle against the strong storms, eventually wrecking the Brest canal, and on board followed, among other goods, the “Hunting Knife”. On loss of such precious good, the Company compensated its owner for 31,500 réis.
But when all brought the story to an end, Fidelidade continued to search for a happy ending. The Fidelidade decided to undertake all efforts to recover the knife and, to that purpose, contacted the well-known firm of London, Casa Bruno da Silva & Sons and with the support of the London Salvage Association, it was possible to recover from the depths of the seas the treasure of our cultural heritage.
Today, the “Hunting Knife” is part of the patrimony of Fidelidade Insurance Company and was present at the inauguration of the Permanent Exhibition Memory of Insurance.
Source:
Magazine of Companhia de Seguros Fidelidade-Mundial, SA, “Companhia” nº 2, págs. 20 e 21 (July 2004) – CHAPAS Club collection
“Hunting Knife”
Fidelidade Insurance Company S.A.
Largo do Calhariz 30, in Lisbon
Photo from the CHAPAS Club collection

1909, 23rd April – The Benavente Earthquake

The Benavente earthquake, on 23rd April 1909, is considered the most devastating in continental Portugal in the 20th century.
With a short duration, about 22 seconds, and an estimated magnitude of 6.7 degrees on the Richter scale, this earthquake caused in the county only a few dozen dead and injured, a balance that was no longer dramatic because at the time it occurred, 5:05 pm, most of the population was working in the fields.
The villages violently affected were Benavente, Samora Correia and Santo Estevão.
Source:
Benavente Municipality website “Terramoto de 1909”
Picture extracted from Eu Gosto de Santarém”

1912, 14th April – Wreck of the Titanic

The wreck of the “Titanic” is in the memory of all of us, through history, through conversations, through films.
The tragedy of the famous ship, this giant “unsinkable” of the seas, collided with an iceberg, in its maiden voyage, from Southampton (England) to New York (USA), where 1,523 people died.
Considered an epic ship, splendor of the naval engineering technique, majestic and imposing, with a decoration inspired in a hotel that was in fashion, “the Ritz”, was 269 meters long and it was due to navigation error and human failure that, in that dawn of fog, the tragedy occurred, breaking in half and succumbing in the Atlantic at 3,800 meters deep.
On board were 4 Portuguese, 3 Madeiran farmers and a young merchant, born in Loulé, who embarked in England to emigrate to America.
The insurance of the Transatlantic and the enormous values that it transported were assured by several companies: English (namely Lloyd’s of London), French, German (Allianz), Japanese and American. The Titanic owner guaranteed the difference from USD 7.5 million to the USD 5 million guaranteed by the insurers.
It was widely reported that the high claims were fully paid, just 30 days after the shipwreck, reaching USD 2.9 billion.
Curiously, for the first time in the history of insurance, the value of a car that sank, brand Renault, was paid in the amount of 5000 dollars, by claim of the surviving passenger, William Carter.
Sources:
Hemeroteca Digital official website, C. M. Lisboa, Efemérides, magazine “Occidente” of 30th April 1912, págs. 89 a 93
Official website pplware.sapo.pt
Picture extracted from “Wikipedia – Naufrágio do RMS Titanic”
Shipwreck of the Titanic, by Willy Stöwer, 1912

1918 – The Pneumonic or Spanish Flu

In several phases, pneumonic – also known as Spanish flu – has killed more than 60,000 Portuguese, mostly young people in Portugal.
Pneumonic caught the health authorities unprepared, not least because the virus was still unknown, and Portugal did not escape the outbreak when, at the end of May 1918, the first case in Vila Viçosa appeared. Soon the contagion spread throughout the country, from south to north.
Portuguese deaths are a tiny part of the more than 20 million victims worldwide – although there are estimates that point to much higher numbers, but it’s such an impressive amount that it can be considered the highest for a disease of its kind in Portugal.
 
Source:
Official website of newspaper “Diário de Notícias” of 17th March 2018, “A epidemia que veio de Espanha e matou mais de 60 mil portugueses”, article by João Céu e Silva
Picture extracted from “Correio do Ribatejo”, crónicas

1941, 15th February – The Cyclone of 1941

Continental Portugal was violently swept by a depression that moved northeast along the Portuguese coast, causing extraordinarily strong winds and high rainfall throughout the territory, causing “…enormous damage, some irreparable, which seriously compromised the national economy”.
In Lisbon, a gust value of 129 km/h was registered, Coimbra registered 133 km/h and in Porto, Serra do Pilar, 167 km/h.
Source:
Official site of archive “IPMA, Media, Notícias” of 16th February 2017
Picture extracted from blog “o de maia”, top of the newspaper cover from “O Século”

1959, 13th August – Large fire destroys São Domingos Church in Lisbon

Built in the 13th century by D. Sancho II, it was partially destroyed by the 1531 earthquake and rebuilt in 1536.
But in 1959 it ploughed one of the biggest fires in the city of Lisbon, perhaps caused by a nearby chimney gully. Firefighters, volunteers, and sappers from the city of Lisbon, a total of 300 men, fought the fire. Two fire-fighters died in mourning.
Most of the damage was incalculable and not covered by insurance. Altars were lost in gilded woodcarvings, valuable images, and paintings from the baroque period.
Although recovered, it still shows traces of this fire that will have become one of the most serious situations faced by Portuguese firefighters.
Source:
Official site of the Portuguese Fire Brigade, History and Museological Heritage Nucleus, “O incêndio na Igreja de São Domingos”, research/text by Luís Miguel Baptista, 31st August 2016
Pictures extracted from twitter “Lisboa” da Câmara Municipal de Lisboa, cover and inside of “O Século Ilustrado” magazine

1961, 23rd January – Kidnapping of the Portuguese “Santa Maria” bellboy

The newspapers of the time reported that “…at 2 o’clock in the morning, a group of armed men assaulted the bellman’s vital points, resulting in one dead and one seriously wounded”.
The Santa Maria Paquette was insured by Lloyd’s Insurance Company in London for $250,000,000. This insurance company informed the Portuguese state that if the ship had sunk, it would pay nothing, because the policy does not guarantee “war risks”.
Source:
Newspaper “Diário de Notícias” clipping of 26th January 1961 – CHAPAS Club collection
Image of newspaper “Diário de Notícias” clipping of 26th January 1961 and “Dinner menu” of 29th November 1960 – CHAPAS Club Collection

1963, 20th March – Fire and wreck of coastal ship “Tagus”

The cargo ship “Tagus” of the National Navigation Company (Portugal) was sailing north of Inhambane – Mozambique, caught fire due to an explosion in hold two, where large quantities of gasoline, oil and tar followed. Three crew members died, and all the cargo was lost, saving the remaining thirty-three.
The vessel was insured at Sagres Insurance Company – Policy 26226 and with co-insurance at Império Insurance Company.
Source:
Dossier with newspaper clippings about “Notícias de Sinistros Marítimos”, vol. 1 – CHAPAS Club Collection
Image of newspaper “Diário de Notícias” clipping of 27th March 1963 – CHAPAS Club Collection

 

1964, 1st December – Fire at the Teatro Dona Maria II, in Lisbon

The inauguration of the National Theater been held on 13th April 1846, at the time of Queen Dona Maria II’s birthday, and called Teatro Nacional Dona Maria II.
But on the first day of December 1964 a violent fire destroyed it so badly that only the outer walls remained. The reconstruction took 14 years, reopening on the night of 11th May 1978.
Source:
Blog “Cais da Memória/ Em 1964 o Teatro D. Maria II é destruído por um incêndio”, 2nd December 2017
Left Picture, extracted from official site of the Portuguese Fire Brigade, History and Museological Heritage Nucleus, “Teatro e(m) chamas”, research/text by Luís Miguel Baptista, 4th April 2017
Right Picture, extracted from Archive DN/ “Coleção comemorativa – Postais dos 150 anos do Diário de Notícias” – CHAPAS Club Collection

1967, 25th November – Floods in and around Lisbon

On the night of November 25 to 26, 1967, heavy rains fell uninterruptedly over several regions of the country, reaching 170L/m2 per hour, causing one of the major disasters in Portugal. The Greater Lisbon region, from Cascais to Alenquer, was particularly affected.
As a direct consequence of the floods there was a high number of deaths and homes destroyed, resulting in thousands of homeless people.
Source
Left Picture, extracted from Gforum/ Sociologia, “A tragédia que Salazar quis esconder – Cheias de 1967 em Lisboa” by Nelson14, 9th March 2018
Right Picture, extracted from Hemeroteca Digital official website, C. M. Lisboa, Efemérides, “as cheias de 1967”, newspaper cover “República” of 26th November 1967

1969, 28th February – Earthquake in Portugal

On the last day of February 1969, Lisbon and several regions of the country were shaken by an earthquake with the epicenter about 230 km southwest of the Portuguese capital. An earthquake of magnitude 7.9 on the Richter scale interrupted the night, with special vehemence in the Algarve region. Desolate as it had not happened for decades.
Like no other since then, the earthquake wreaked havoc, wiped out a village, gave rise to a small tsunami and caused 13 deaths, two of which were considered direct victims of the quake.
The earthquake was felt in Morocco, but also in Bordeaux and the Canaries.
Source:
RTP Notícias official website/ País, “28 de fevereiro de 1969: a noite em que Portugal tremeu para reavivar o risco” by Christopher Marques, 21st September 2017
Image of newspaper cover “Diário de Lisboa” extracted from blog “Ambitare Scriptum/ O sismo de 28 de fevereiro de 1969”, 27th Februry 2019

1977, 19th November – Madeira Island Air Accident

The greatest tragedy in Portuguese aviation occurred on 19th November 1977, at Madeira Airport. TAP’s Boeing 727-200, called Sacadura Cabral, crashed while attempting to land on the runway of Santa Catarina Airport in Madeira.
According to the accident investigation report published by INAC, the factors pointed out were the adverse meteorological conditions combined with the short runway and human failure.
At the third landing attempt, the plane touched the runway and only stopped 323 meters ahead of normal, reaching the end of the runway at a speed of 126 km/h.
The aircraft broke in half with its tail on the ground – which allowed 33 people to survive with injuries – and the front at sea, followed by an explosion. There were 131 fatalities.
TAP and Império Insurance Company, which guaranteed the civil liability, have settled the indemnification processes judicially and extrajudicially.
Because of the accident the company moved on to extend the runway in 1986 and in successive years – it is still today considered one of the most difficult to land worldwide.
In 2017 this international airport was renamed “Cristiano Ronaldo” in honor of the player, under a proposal that has not yet been officially accepted.

 

Image Source
Image of newspaper cover “O Dia”, 21st November 1977 – CHAPAS Club Collection

1985, 11th September – The Alcafache railway accident

In the late afternoon of 11th September 1985, a terrible and remarkable event in the history of the Portuguese Railways took place on the Beira Alta line.
It would have been a communication error, via telephone, between the station chiefs of Nelas and Moimenta de Maceira Dão-Alcafache’s Station that put the involved trains on a collision course. On the line, from a single track, followed the regional train that had left the Guarda bound for Coimbra and in the opposite direction, the Sud-Express composition that had left the Porto to Vilar Formoso bound for Paris.
Among the 460 passengers travelling on the two trains, many were emigrants returning to France.
Around 6:37 p.m. the two trains collided head-on with such violence that they caused a series of explosions, causing many injuries and a few dozen deaths. This tragedy left victims unidentified and who, until today, have been reported missing.
CP-Comboios de Portugal took over the payment of funerals, the treatment of the injured and speeded up the process of compensation.
Source:
TL-TrainLogistic official website, “Acidente Ferroviário de Alcafache-1985” by Cláudio Amendoeira, September 2013
Picture extracted from TL-TrainLogistic

1988, 25th August – Great fire in Chiado

It was Thursday, 25th August 1988 and at 5 a.m. a fire alert is given in Chiado.
The Chiado fire broke out at Grandella Warehouses, on the side of Carmo street, in Lisbon. In the heart of downtown Lisbon several buildings were devoured by the flames and in less than 5 hours, leaving that historical area in ruins. The fire consumed 18 buildings between Garrett street and Nova do Almada street, mostly shopping and services areas.
More than 1200 firemen fought the great fire. There were two fatal victims, a fireman and a resident, and the despair of those who lost their property or their job.
But the recovery began and was completed in 1999.
The emergency office, which then arose, to assess the damage and the reconstruction worked in the then Insurance Institute of Portugal, now ASF – Insurance and Pension Funds Supervisory Authority. The insurers will have paid the equivalent, today, of 20 million euros in damages.
Source:
RTP Notícias official website/ País, “Um fogo no coração de Lisboa. O incêndio do Chiado foi há 30 anos” by Andreia Martins, Sara Piteira-RTP, 26th August 2018
Image of newspaper cover from “O Independente”, 26th August 1988 – CHAPAS Club Collection
Image of newspaper cover and back cover from “Correio da Manhã”, 26th August 1988 – CHAPAS Club Collection

2010, 20th February – Alluvium in Madeira Island

Rain continued to fall incessantly on the island of Madeira during the dawn of 20th February 2010.
This storm was a sequence of events initiated by heavy rainfall, followed by a rise in sea level. The orography of the island, the lack of town planning and illegal construction were factors that will have aggravated the effects of the disaster, causing heavy flooding with the overflowing of streams and landslides along the slopes of the island, particularly in the south.
The lower part of the city of Funchal was flooded and road traffic was hindered by stones and tree trunks dragged along the streams of São João, Santa Luzia and João Gomes.
The chapel of Nossa Senhora da Conceição was taken by the force of the waters, together with some houses. The image of the Saint was saved by the people.
It was confirmed 47 dead, 4 missing, 600 homeless and 250 wounded.
The amount of water that fell that day, particularly at Pico do Areeiro, was the highest ever recorded in Portugal.
The losses were estimated at around EUR 1 080 million, distributed by the State,
740 million by the regional government, together with private donations and insurance companies which supported 309 million. The European Union Solidarity Fund contributed EUR 31 million.
The Portuguese government declared three days of national mourning.
Source
Picture extracted from Wikipédia, “Aluvião na ilha da Madeira em 2010” by Andreas Gehret from Hamburg, Germany

 

2017, 17th June – Pedrogão Grande’s Big Fire

The fire that broke out in Pedrógão Grande and spread to neighboring municipalities caused 66 deaths and 253 injuries, seven of which were serious, and destroyed half a thousand homes, 261 of which were permanent homes as well as 50 businesses.
Source:
Online newspaper official website “O Observador”, 14th June 2018
Picture extracted from RTP Notícias official website/ País/ Reuters, “Foram apagados ou destruídos documentos sobre incêndio de Pedrogão Grande” by RTP, 2nd May 2018

2018, 13th October – Leslie Storm

The passage of hurricane Leslie, which arrived in Portugal as a tropical storm, on the night of October 13 to 14, 2018, affected, with varying degrees of severity, the Central region, especially the district of Coimbra. It caused 27 minor injuries, 61 displaced persons and losses of about 120 million euros.
Source
Picture extracted from RR-Renascença official website, Photo: Manuela Pires/RR (arquivo), 13th October 2018

 

Insurance Headquarters

Old and current

“There are worse things in life than death. Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman?”

Woody Allen

In and out

European continent

Portugal

CHAPAS – Clube História e Acervo Português da Actividade Seguradora
EPMS – Exposição Permanente Memória do Seguro
Livroteca dos Seguros
Biblioteca da ASF – Autoridade de Supervisão de Seguros e Fundos de Pensão
História do Seguro

Spain

Fundacion Mapfre
Corredor D’ Assegurances Ruiz
Vallvé Corredores de Seguros

Italy

Fondazioni Mansutti
Museo Paolo Raspino
Casari Assicura

Germany

Deustsher Feuer Versicherungs schilder Verein

United Kingdom

The Fire Mark Circle

Russia

Society: Общество любителей страховых древностей
Collector Dmitri Korneyev

American continent

United States of America

The Fire Marks Circle of the Americas

Argentina

Rádio Argentina – Tiempo de Seguros

Directors:
Marcelo Eduardo Deve
Fernando Tornato

Fundação Museo Argentino del Seguro

Brazil

Sincor – Sindicato de Empresários e Profissionais Autónomos da Corretagem e da Distribuição de Seguros do Estado de São Paulo

Cuba

Seguros Cuba

Prof. Alejandro Vigil Iduate
Habana University of Law

Asian Continent

China

China Insurance Museum

Mediation in Portugal

 

“It is possible, by force of trust, to put someone in the impossibility of deceiving us.”

(Joseph Joubert)

The insurance mediator communicates in two languages, and verbalises in good faith, the nearness and trust between insurance companies and persons or companies.

To the insurance mediator is entrusted with the task of advising and promoting so that, with the Insurers, the goods and people are effectively secure and that there’ be tranquility.

“ALLIANÇA MADEIRENSE”

 

“Alliança Madeirense Insurance Company” – Agent Mediation Contract

So, it was hired in 1964

ANUÁRIO DE SEGUROS, 1941

 

“Perspetivas para a Mediação” – Insurance Yearbook, 1941