Truck insurance is needed for anyone who starts a trucking business. You must hire experienced drivers who have a clean driving record because this will reduce your insurance coverage costs. Some types of trucking insurance, like an umbrella policy and occupational accident coverage, may be optional for your type of business. But you should purchase primary and general liability insurance so that your employees and vehicles are covered in the case of an accident. It may be wise to buy physical damage coverage, as well, so that your truck is covered for non-accident damages.
Trucking Insurance Categories
There are many types of truck insurance you can buy for your business; the ones you choose will be based on your company’s needs.
Primary liability covers the insured driver when an accident involves bodily injuries or property damage to someone else. For example, if the driver gets in a car accident and breaks their leg, the insurance would cover the medical expenses from the accident. If the driver rear-ends another car, the insurance will cover the damage to the other vehicle.
This is one of the essential types of Commercial truck insurance. General liability will cover customer bodily injuries and property damage that does not involve the truck. For example, suppose a customer gets injured on your business’ property. In that case, general liability will cover medical expenses, attorney fees, court-ordered judgments, and funeral expenses if the injury was fatal. This insurance does not cover employee injury; you must get workers’ compensation insurance to cover employee injuries.
An umbrella policy, also known as excess liability insurance, covers lawsuits when the primary liability insurance gets depleted. This insurance coverage will provide you with additional protection if your business is the target of a lawsuit. For example, suppose your primary liability insurance is set to $1 million, and your company gets sued more than $1.5 million. In that case, excess liability insurance will give you the extra coverage to cover the remaining amount.
Physical damage insurance will cover costs for damages that occur to your truck. For example, if a driver collides with a wall, your insurance will cover the repairs needed for the damage. This insurance will also cover damage to the truck caused by natural disasters, extreme weather events, fire, theft, and vandalism.
Non-trucking Liability Insurance Non-trucking liability insurance covers the truck when the driver is not transporting cargo and is using the truck on their personal time. For example, if the driver gets into an accident when they are off-duty and not hauling cargo, the truck will still be covered when you have this insurance. When the driver uses the truck on their personal time, the truck will not be covered under the primary liability insurance. Therefore, it is essential to have this type of coverage.
Uninsured motorist coverage covers your expense and damages in the event of an accident where the other motorist was at fault and they do not have insurance. Under-insured motorist coverage applies when another driver is at fault, but their limits are too low to cover the damage to your vehicle or its driver.
Occupational accident insurance covers workers for medical, disability, death, and dismemberment benefits for accidents while on the job.
It is wise to look at the coverages available and make a list of must-haves so that you will have an idea of what you want to purchase when you talk to the insurance agent. Of course, if you have any questions, insurance agents are there to help you make this critical choice to keep your drivers, trucks, and everyone out on the road safe.