12 Tips to Save on Trucking Insurance
As an independent owner-operator or owner of a small fleet, trucking insurance is one of your most significant expenses.
In this post, we explore the top 12 tips to save money, get the best rate, and coverage on your trucking insurance:
Driver experience, age of vehicles, maintenance schedule, safety violations, and the time your company has been in business are factors insurance providers use to determine truck insurance prices.
1. Hire Experienced Drivers
The number of years a driver has under their belt is one factor that insurance providers use to determine truck insurance premiums. More experienced drivers are more often safer and more able to deal with inclement weather, along with other less-than-ideal operating conditions.
Action Item: Hire drivers with at least two years of CDL experience.
2. Hire Drivers with Clean Driving Records to Qualify for Low-Cost Truck Insurance
Drivers who have been involved in fewer accidents are less likely to be involved in further accidents in the future. To lower the cost of your trucking insurance, consider drivers with fewer accidents and violations.
Action Item: Hire drivers with no more than one or two minor moving violations in 3 years.
3. Verify Driver Employment History to Get the Best Truck Insurance Rates
The number of years a driver has worked with different companies is important in determining the best commercial truck insurance rates. The chance of an accident is reduced if the driver is experienced with specific routes and equipment.
Action Item: Verify each prospective driver’s employment history and references.
4. Utilize a Driver Monitoring Program
If your using an electronic logging device (ELD) or have yet to start using one, you have the opportunity to save on your insurance premium by allowing your provider access to your driving data.
Action Item: Ask your agent about ELD options. New businesses save an average of 1,100 per vehicle
5. Specialize in the Products you Haul and Contracts you Accept
The type of load you are carrying will make a big difference in premium. In life, being a jack of all trades is a great thing, but when it comes to trucking, the more you can narrow down the type of commodities hauled, the more you will save from being rated for multiple risk classes.
Action Item: Determine what you want to haul and what you don’t
6. Your Routes and Radius of Operation
The different routes on which your trucks operate can impact your commercial truck driver insurance premium. Factors include population density, frequency of inclement weather, and so on.
Action Item: Avoid high-population metro areas like New York, Chicago, Houston, and Los Angeles.
7. Use Newer Trucks and Have a Maintenance Schedule
The age, condition, and value of your company’s vehicles are a factor in determining trucking insurance premiums. Upkeep of trucking fleets and recently installed equipment is also a factor.
Action Item: Utilize newer trucks (10 years or newer) with modern equipment whenever possible.
8. Staying In Business Lowers Your Truck Insurance Rates
All businesses have ups and downs, but simply staying in business under the same name and maintaining your operating authority will result in lower trucking insurance premiums because new trucking operations are considered riskier to insure.
Action Item: Stay in business and don’t change or revoke your operating authority.
9. Keep a Clean DOT Safety Record
Know where you stand! Your DOT safety record includes your owner-operator or fleet DOT safety rating,
Action Item: Monitor your DOT safety record monthly and take action to maintain good standing.
10. Have and Use Business Safety Features
Safety is our #1 priority! Use warning stickers, company safety programs, and driver safety training, all show insurance providers that safety is important to your organization.
Action Item: Periodically evaluate the safety features your trucking operation employs.
11. Consider a Higher Deductible
A higher deductible will lower your trucking physical damage insurance premium. However, you will pay a higher “self-insured retention” in the event of an accident.
Action Item: Use a deductible of at least $1,000 — consider a higher deductible such as $2,500 or $5,000.
12. Choose the Right Commercial Trucking Insurance Agent
Last but not least: Consider an agent with access to multiple insurance carriers and who specializes in trucking insurance. Your agent and agency are valuable assets for your business. Choosing a trucking insurance specialist is critical to getting the right coverage, best service, and best value for your dollar.