Semi truck insurance is one of the many expenses that business owners must cover each year. The cost of vehicles, equipment, fuel, wages, taxes, maintenance, and other necessities adds up very quickly. That’s why many trucking companies look for ways to cut costs and save money.
One of the first places many look is their semi truck insurance policy. Depending on what kind of coverage you need, you may be able to lower your annual costs. There may be a risk involved in doing so if you are refusing a coverage that you may need in the future. Some policies are available with a lower premium but also lower payouts, which means your next accident may not be fully covered.
It may be tempting to consider skipping the semi truck insurance altogether. Be aware that if you choose to do this, you are putting yourself at risk for high losses and legal repercussions.
The Trucking Industry’s Most Common Liabilities
Before you cancel your semi truck insurance policy, consider the many liabilities that come with the trucking business. These are things that just about all truckers face, and they can lead to high costs and even lawsuits.
- Trucker Lifestyle and Health
Staying healthy as a trucker can be difficult. The job requires sitting for long periods of time. And for many, cooking a fresh meal on the road isn’t always an option. Eating fast food is easier, but it isn’t good for health. Lack of exercise and unhealthy foods can cause a series of medical problems like obesity, high blood sugar, and high blood pressure.
Truckers are also exposed to diesel fumes, which can cause respiratory conditions. Trucking companies that haul hazardous chemicals face an increased risk of other health issues.
Lengthy drives can cause fatigue. And when loading and unloading, frequent lifting can cause injuries. Even if you don’t suffer an immediate injury, repeated movements and heavy lifting over time can lead to musculoskeletal problems later in life.
- Accidents Related to Sleep Deprivation
Truck drivers often push themselves to stay on schedule. This may encourage them to stay awake longer, leading to sleep deprivation. Irregular sleeping patterns also make it more likely to suffer from insomnia. It’s difficult to get restful sleep on the road.
Federal regulations have rules in place for how long a driver can operate a vehicle before they are required to take a break. Deviating from this can cause health problems and make a tired driver a hazard on the road.
- Pushing Drivers to Meet Tight Deadlines
The trucking industry is notorious for its strenuous deadlines. Drivers have to push through, and sometimes they take risks to get there on time. That can mean excessive speed and not stopping, even when they should.
Tight deadlines are a contributing factor in the number of crashes and injuries reported each year. These incidents lead to more expenses on top of medical costs as vehicles and cargo are lost or damaged.
These are just a few of the liabilities that come with the trucking business. Consider the cost of a single accident. Can you pay for it all without semi truck insurance?
No Semi Truck Insurance Can Mean Serious Legal Problems
It is not legal to drive without semi truck insurance. If you are caught doing so, you could face hefty penalties.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) lists insurance requirements for truckers. That includes minimum coverage required for different types of vehicles and freight. For example, if you have a truck that’s under 10,0001 lbs. hauling non-hazardous cargo, then you must have at least $300,000 in public liability insurance coverage.
The minimum goes up a lot for other categories. If you are hauling oil, then you must have $1,000,000 in coverage. Other hazardous materials will require over $5,000,000 in coverage.
There is a good reason for these minimums. That is because the cost of cleaning up after an accident can be tremendous. Semi truck insurance is a must to protect you financially and legally.
Finding the Right Semi Truck Insurance Coverage for Your Fleet
Public liability is important, but there are other types of coverage that might be beneficial to you. Cargo insurance will pay for lost or damaged cargo. Most shippers will refuse to do business with a trucking company if they do not hold a cargo insurance policy.
Owner-operators should look into bobtail insurance. This coverage will pay out if you are in an accident without a trailer attached after making a delivery. If you lease with a motor carrier, then you may be required to have bobtail insurance.
Other types of semi truck insurance are available. The experts at Insure Trucking can help you decide which coverage you need and show you the best rates for your trucking business. Contact us now to learn more or to get a personalized semi truck insurance quote.