Trucks and truck drivers are at the core of our economy. They make sure commercial goods we use every day get from one point to another. They also travel long distances and use a lot of physical effort to do so. Yet, in spite of their role in trade and industry, insurance for truck drivers are not always easily accessible. If you are a truck driver looking for additional protection, where do you even begin?
What is Truck Insurance?
Commercial truck insurance is specifically designed for trucking companies and fleets. It covers the vehicle, cargo, and any liabilities that may arise. In the past, however, trucking-specific insurers have come and gone pretty fast. This resulted in trucking companies having to move their business elsewhere. Because of this, insurance for truckers and drivers tend to be volatile from time to time.
What Does Truck Insurance Cover?
Insurance companies give the most priority to cargo and destination. These two factors affect your premium the most. Insurance companies also provide coverage for vehicles and fleets. They also offer liability coverage in the event of an accident. At the same time, owner/operators can opt to get health and life insurance for themselves and their drivers. However, it is important to note that not all companies that sell truck insurance offer this. If you are a driver, be sure to ask your employer if you are covered by their company insurance.
Can New Truck Drivers Get Insurance?
If an insurance company insures drivers and employees, chances are they cover new drivers too. If you are a driver, you do not need to get this yourself. You will be covered under the company’s terms. The problem is, new drivers cost higher premiums for the company. This is because their lack of experience means a higher risk for accidents. Other things that may jack up premiums are drivers with road violations and previous accidents. It is best for owner/operators to check how a drivers’ experience and records will affect their premium.
Is There Travel Coverage?
Traveling is what trucks do. As such, coverage while on the road is very important. This is why many companies provide Travel Medical Emergency coverage for drivers. But be careful. Sometimes companies have a fine print saying drivers are not covered while they are working. This means that if you get in an accident while operating the truck, you cannot make a claim. Thus, it is important to ask about this to make sure you have the right kind of protection. There are also limits in terms of destination and duration. Where you are going will affect the premium, especially if you drive regularly to the US.
What Happens If I Get Injured On The Job?
Depending on your coverage, you should qualify for disability insurance while you are out of work. This means the insurance company will be paying you in lieu of your salary as you heal from your injury. You can also get more information and assistance from the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board of Canada.
Do I Need My Own Health Insurance?
You may or may not need your own health insurance. Again, this depends on the benefits provided by your company. Many trucking insurance companies cover health and dental insurance. However, not all trucking companies provide this for their drivers. If you need health insurance but your company does not provide it, it is best to contact a broker to help you out. Likewise, if your company provides health insurance, be sure to check what benefits it comes with. This way, you will know if you need supplementary coverage or not.
Do I Need My Own Car Insurance?
If you are an owner/operator or a driver and have a car for personal use, you still need your own car insurance. This is because your work coverage is limited to driving company trucks or vehicles. Vehicle insurance does not extend to the driver either. As such, you will need to get your personal vehicle extra security on your own.
Where Can I Get Truck Insurance?
Commercial vehicle insurance is easy to find. But is it the same for truck insurance? Unfortunately, that is not always the case. Despite the challenges, it is more beneficial for owner/operators to find insurance companies that offer truck insurance. This is because they can provide coverage that is specific to trucking needs. This includes more detailed coverage for cargo. This could also include fleet coverage for trucks and drivers. Getting insurance for the company as a whole may even qualify you for discounts. Most importantly, insurance companies that cater to trucking companies know the business. As such, they have more knowledge when it comes to logistics and operations.
For trucking companies, insurance may not be the easiest thing to find. Only a few offer it, and even then, it is not consistent. In general, trucking insurance considers cargo, destination, and vehicle for the premium. The size of the fleet and the drivers also affect the premium. New drivers and drivers with a bad record mean the company can be paying more.
Different insurance companies also offer different benefits. Some of these include disability insurance and travel medical emergency. Injured drivers who are out of work get disability insurance if they got injured at work. Meanwhile, travel medical emergency covers a driver while they are on the road, whether they are driving or not.
In the end, though, a truck driver still personal car insurance for their own vehicles. This is because vehicle insurance does not extend from work to personal. The same goes for health insurance if the company does not provide that benefit.