Are you considered a high risk driver by truck insurance companies? In general, high risk truck drivers will end up paying more for their insurance, unfortunately. You may be wondering, how do insurance companies determine whether someone’s a high risk driver? Well, they consider many factors.
In this article, we’ll discuss the criteria for a high risk truck driver as well as a plan of action. Without further ado, let’s get started.
What’s a High Risk Truck Driver?
This is someone who falls into the high risk category created by insurance companies. The silver lining for high risk drivers is that not every insurance company will view them that way. Some companies have a different way of classifying drivers than others.
Some companies will refuse to insure a driver altogether or they’ll charge them substantially more for their insurance.
Essentially, an insurance company believes this driver poses a greater risk and they’re more likely to file a claim. This could be due to a number of reasons that we will discuss next.
What Makes a Driver High Risk?
Although the criteria of a high risk driver varies among different insurance companies, four main elements remain consistent.
· They have a bad safety record
After a roadside inspection, the FMCSA stores their findings online for insurance companies to access. This information helps truck insurance companies figure out whether you prioritize safety.
So, if you have the following on your safety record you’ll be deemed high risk:
- A high number of claims filed
- A high CSA score
- Several accidents
- A bad SMS rating
- A large amount of OSS violations
· They have numerous traffic violations
Insurance companies prefer drivers with a clean record and excellent driving skills. So, if you have a DUI, speeding tickets, or other traffic violations you’ll be considered high risk.
· They haul risky cargo
One of the reasons you may not get insurance despite having a clean record could be due to the nature of your job. If your truck carries oversized loads or hazardous materials then you’ll be considered risky to insure.
Items that fall into the is category include:
- Poisonous substances
- Radioactive material
- Flammable liquids and solids
- And so on
· They’re a new venture trucking business
New trucking businesses often encounter several complications when it comes to finding insurance. This is because they don’t have any experience operating a commercial vehicle. Therefore, insurers are unable to identify their level of risk which can make determining rates difficult.
Insurance Options for High Risk Truck Drivers
Finding insurance as a high risk driver can be tricky. However, what you need to do is shop around and gather quotes from multiple reputable insurance companies. To make the process easier, you can seek assistance from an insurance agency and they’ll do all the hard work for you.
If none of these options work out then assigned risk insurance may be your only option. Ultimately, the state will need to intervene and assign an insurance company to you.
What to Do?
To overcome this problem, you’ll need a plan of action. First, you need to shop around and find the best deal. Not all insurance companies charge the same rate so you may be pleasantly surprised.
Next, you need to address the issue that’s causing you to fall into the high risk category. Talk with your insurer to get the answers you’re looking for. You may need to change your company’s culture or implement more safety training.
However, if you haul hazardous materials or oversized loads you won’t necessarily have control over this. All you can do is show your insurer that you’re following safety protocols and maintain a clean record.