Semi truck insurance is a hard-hitting expense for a small fleet owner or independent owner-operator. The continued rate increase by as much as 20% when there are minor claims does not help transportation companies manage overhead. Regardless of how clean your driving record is, your commercial trucking insurance keeps increasing. Unfortunately, commercial truck insurance is not one of the business expenses you can cut out. However, it is not all gloom. You can reduce your commercial trucking premiums and still get the most out of your semi truck insurance policy.
Insurance providers consider many factors in determining your commercial trucking premiums. Knowing what the providers are looking for can help you get reliable coverage at an affordable cost. Here are the top 6 ways you can reduce your commercial trucking insurance premium.
Employ Experienced Drivers
Insurance providers have a keen interest in years of driving experience when determining truck insurance premiums. Experienced truck drivers can better deal with adverse weather and other difficult working conditions. Providers perceive your operation as relatively less-risky. Therefore, they will be willing to impose lower trucking insurance premiums. Ideally, your drivers should have at least 2 years of CDL experience.
Hire Drivers with Clean Driving Records
The past is the best predictor of the future. Drivers with a history of numerous accidents and violations have a higher risk index compared to their counterparts. The reverse is also true and insurance providers do take notice of this trend. Therefore, consider hiring drivers with fewer violations and accidents. Ideally, hire drivers with at most 2 minor moving violations in 3 years.
Verify Driver Employment History
A driver who is constantly changing companies does not inspire confidence with insurance providers. Conversely, drivers who have served extended periods of time with few companies is perceived as more stable, and has a cleaner history with fewer employment (and possibly insurance coverage) gaps to review. It also implies that they are experienced with specific equipment and routes.
Map out Your Trucking Routes
The routes on which your trucks operate have an impact on your commercial trucking insurance premiums. Factors such as frequency of inclement weather, population density etc. have an impact on the risk level of a particular route. Ideally, avoid high population metro areas and areas prone to bad weather when mapping out your route.
Use Newer Trucks
The age, value and condition of your trucks have an impact in determining your commercial trucking insurance premiums. Regular maintenance and installation of new equipment on trucks also informs the premium rate decision. Ideally, stick to new trucks, 10 years or newer. The truck should also have modern equipment when possible; such as accident avoidance technologies geared toward commercial trucks is a bonus.
Consider a Higher Deductible
When implemented well, the factors above have the ability to push down your insurance premiums. If after implementing the aforementioned steps you still find yourself paying abnormally high premiums, consider adjusting your semi truck insurance policy. A higher deductible results in lower trucking insurance premium. However, you will have to bear higher upfront costs if an accident occurs. If you decide to go down this route, select a deductible your company can afford to front without additional burden. But, before proceeding with changes to your policy, set up a policy review with your commercial trucking insurance agent to find out the best options for reducing your company’s insurance premiums.
Reducing your commercial trucking insurance premiums is not always easy. While the measures listed above, individually may not save you a great deal on your premium, collectively they can reduce your premiums substantially while also maintaining at or above-minimum coverage on your semi truck insurance policy.