First, truckers, tractors and trailers are insured as commercial equipment and do not automatically receive the coverage extensions of a personal automobile policy. Electronics, cargo equipment, cargo securing equipment, rental reimbursement, and personal property are insured differently and are not automatically covered.
Commercial vehicle liability is pretty straightforward. If a trucker has the ICC Authority, a presentation of proof of financial responsibility will be given to the feds. Submissions are what makes a trucker compliant with Federal Authority (ICC) requirements. Uninsured / Underinsured Driver is also helpful for a trucker who has been injured by an uninsured vehicle. Medical payments come in handy when someone is injured on and off your truck.
Cargo insurance covers the liability of truckers for other goods they transport. There are 3 different forms or policies: Named Perils and Theft, which has limited coverage, Broad Form, which adds some coverage to the basic form, and All Risk Coverage, which offers coverage for all causes, unless excluded by the language of the policy. Regardless of the form, there are certain coverages that a trucker would need. Truckers must purchase cargo coverage equal to the highest value of the goods they transport. Some policies have a coinsurance clause that can limit the coverage limits if you transport a load of value greater than the insured limit on your policy.
1) A refrigerated carrier would need Reefer Malfunction or Reefer Breakdown coverage to cover freeze damage or spoilage incurred if their refrigerated unit breaks down. Remember to find out if the policy covers an error in setting the temperature control device. Most refrigerated policies only cover in case of breakdown or malfunction of the unit.
2) A flatbed carrier should have a moisture shield or backrest in case its cargo is damaged by rain or snow. Most policies have a tarp endorsement that limits coverage to loads that are properly covered. Sometimes a tarp can become damaged or come loose due to no fault of the trucker, resulting in cargo damage that may not be covered unless moisture coverage is added. Cover for tarps, chains, and folders is also desired to replace stolen or damaged binding equipment not otherwise covered.
3) A dry truck hauler would be recommended to make sure a load shifting is covered. In this type of operation, larger and longer trailers are used and the cargo securing equipment may fail. These cases are rare but they do happen.
Every trucker should have obtained freight coverage on their cargo policy. This coverage pays for lost income when you cannot deliver your cargo due to a covered loss. Loss removal and cleanup coverage must be at least $ 10,000.
Physical damage coverage is generally to repair the tractor and trailer in the event of a covered loss. This coverage is insured for a set value. The value set for the equipment is the responsibility of the truckers. The insurance company will pay a loss based on equipment of similar quality. That means market value. Therefore, the trucker must ensure that his values are accurate. Remember that you will pay a deductible for each unit unless your policy has a combined deductible endorsement. Also, the towing is for a covered loss only, not for disability or breakdown. Many policies pay for losses and include towing and storage limits on the indicated amount of the vehicle, so if you have a loss and a large towing or storage bill, the policy limit may not cover all of your losses. Towing coverage can and should be purchased in addition to physical damage. Make sure your towing policy covers disability and road service.
Electronic devices such as cell phones, televisions, and radios are generally not covered unless you purchase additional coverage. Your personal property is also not covered unless it is specifically covered by the policy, but it may be covered by your homeowners insurance. Rent reimbursement is also not automatically covered.
I have insured truckers for many years and know that the emotional bond with their trucks can be very strong, but insurance companies see them as a piece of equipment that is used to generate income. So the older they are and the more miles they have, the less money they are worth. Improvement issues also come into play. Tractors go many more miles than cars and have a longer life. The average tractor travels 115,000-135,000 miles a year. Some insurance companies take this into account when replacing an engine or suspension part after an accident. If the useful life of the part is expected to be 500,000 miles and you have an accident at 250,000 miles, some insurance companies will only pay half the replacement value of the part because half of the expected useful life has been used. of the pieces. If an agent doesn’t know how their insurance company handles this up front, they may have to pay hell.
General liability is for incidental liability exposure not covered by the commercial auto policy. This is good coverage for car carriers who can drive vehicles to a location after unloading them from a trailer. Also a trucker who uses his own forklift to load and unload cargo.
Workers’ compensation is required for injuries to truckers or their employees. The Work Injury is a low cost alternative with certain advantages and disadvantages of coverage. It is always best to consult a truck insurance specialist to explain all of these coverages and advise you on particular types of truck risks.
For more information about me and truck related issues, see the links below.