Truckers who want privacy in their over-the-road endeavors will need to be prepared to forego insurance coverage to retain that privilege. This is the message insurers have for American truckers who will now have to resort to invasive monitoring technology if they hope to still hold onto their affordable insurance.
This measure is a fairly recent addition to the list of tightening mechanisms insurers are imposing on trucking clients. Failure to comply may result in a premium increase up to 30 percent annually. In addition, some of insurers are even pulling out of certain coverage schemes altogether. Zurich Insurance and American International Group (AIG) were among the early ones to drop coverage for most of the for-hire trucking fleets.
Why have insurance companies become so pushy?
Increasingly, crowded roads coupled with rampant smartphone use are being blamed for staggering losses (approximately $716 million before taxes) suffered by many trucking insurance companies in recent years. The situation is exacerbated by an influx of inexperienced drivers.
Consequently, with costs mounting at $112 for every $100 premium collected and significant jury awards reaching $3 to $5 million per case, underwriting scores of these businesses have bottomed out, resulting in the imposition of tech-based monitoring systems such as in-cab cameras and GPS speed detection in order to modify driver behavior.
These systems can be used to record all of the driver’s activities–how he drives, how many stops he takes, the hours of service he puts in and the like. In severe cases, the data can be used to fire those who operate in an unsafe manner.
Cost-saving measures adopted by Trucking Companies
Now that trucking firms know that insurers will only renew coverage upon their adoption of the new high-end technologies, they, too, have taken to saving costs and reducing risks as much as possible.
For example, Estes Services, a heating and air-conditioning firm, recently prompted its drivers to install a program called CellControl in an effort to reduce all possible distractions while driving, which includes making calls, using apps, texting, and emailing. These activities can only be resumed when the vehicle is stopped.
Also, maintaining e-logs, something the trucking industry used to frown upon, now finds supporters in that it not only helps foster a safer environment for drivers, but facilitates easy management of specific data like hours-of-service. This helps trucking firms to comply with their insurer’s requirements.
If you were badly injured in an accident with a big rig, you may be able to recover money damages in a personal injury case. The San Francisco attorneys at Alexander Law Group, LLP will work fervently to procure all possible monetary compensation. Our goal is to help our clients and their families receive proper compensation for their pain and suffering. You can reach one of our San Francisco personal injury attorneys at 888.777.1776, or you can contact us online.