A Beginner's Guide To Commercial Truck Insurance

Whether in life or business, owners must protect anything of value at all costs. Getting insurance is often a wise option to shield any asset from damages and accidents.

Business properties, including trucks used for commercial, are essential in any enterprise. Large volumes of products and merchandise can’t move from point A to point B without these impressive vehicles. As a vital commercial asset, business owners must ensure that they get insurance coverage for their fleet.

A Beginner's Guide To Commercial Truck Insurance

Ahead, you’ll find out more commercial truck insurance: what it is, how it works, and what standard truck insurance policies cover.    

Who Needs A Commercial Truck Insurance?

Like personal vehicles, insurance for commercial trucks is a must-have in all states and territories. Federal regulations require all commercial trucks to have insurance coverage, as indicated in title 49, section 387 of the United States Code of Federal Regulations.   

There are several commercial truck types used in various businesses and industries. Whatever their business purpose, they need to be amply protected by an insurance policy in case of damage-causing accidents.

How Does Commercial Auto Insurance Work?

Unlike business automobiles, trucks can be exposed to different risks on the road. Huge trucks carry heavy volumes of merchandise cross-border, requiring these vehicles to travel for hours. 

Commercial truck insurance is a particular type of insurance that’s specifically developed for these mammoth motor vehicles.

Trucks are supervised by FMCSA or Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, requiring owners to comply with the minimum insurance requirements before deploying a car, especially for trucks owned by high-risk clients

Most often, trucking policies are required to have primary liability coverage. Depending on the weight, cargo, and other factors, the FMCSA may need additional coverages. 

While businesses may consider additional coverages as unnecessary expenses, extra insurances may prove helpful during accidents. When something happens to a truck, a business owner may file for insurance claims, depending on the insurance coverage, of course.   

What Are The Different Types Of Coverage?    

As mentioned, federal rules through FMCSA require different insurance levels for different types of trucks. Below are the most common types of vehicle insurance coverage applicable for various truck classifications:   

Primary liability: This type of insurance safeguards people and assets from damages caused by the accident. The liability truck is required before the FMCSA can release a trucking license.  

General liability: This coverage shields your truck and business against liabilities for bodily injury and property damages within your premises or due to your trucking operations. Some offer advertising and personal injury liabilities in this policy.    

Comprehensive coverage: Insures commercial trucks that get damaged due to natural disasters and incidents such as collisions, fire, theft, vandalism, falling objects, and similar. 

Motor truck cargo: This insurance protects your business from legal liabilities arising from damage to transported goods.  

Bobtail insurance: Covers your trailer-less truck when not used to haul items but figures in an unfortunate accident.

A primary liability offers basic and minimum coverage, while a general liability offers extra protection. For peace of mind, most experts suggest the owners get both.  

Which Commercial Truck Insurance Is For You? 

Federal regulations aside, insurance coverage requirements may depend on whether you’re a truck driver or an owner. For instance, those who want to drive a truck will need primary liability insurance, at the minimum. Ideally, owners of truck companies will have to get primary and general liability coverages.  

A Beginner's Guide To Commercial Truck Insurance

If your truck is used mainly to transport goods, it’s wise to get additional policies that protect merchandise and other transported items. The FMCSA requires $750,000 worth of insurance, while most shippers and brokers require up to $1 million worth of insurance. 

Additionally, the FMCSA might require certain trucking operations to have sufficient overall liability coverage.

How Much To Cost A Commercial Truck Insurance?  

The cost of insuring varies depending on the type of coverage you need and other factors. Primary liability, for instance, may have to pay up to USD$7,000 in annual insurance premiums. The rates, however, will vary according to the following factors:   

Your US Department of Transportation authority  

Your equipment’s condition and age  

The types of cargo your truck hauls  

Driving history 

State requirements and location 

Your route and operations coverage 

Conversely, the FMCSA estimates that the average cost for a large truck crash with one death could reach USD$3.6 million, while collisions with injuries cost USD$200,000 on average. A motor crash involving a large truck could cause about $91,000 in payments. It means getting an insurance policy is a smart business move.   

Final Thoughts 

Protecting your truck and yourself or your drivers is crucial, considering that trucks face higher risks on the road. Getting truck insurance should not be an added business expenditure. It must be a worthy investment that could protect you from paying hefty out-of-pocket costs in case of an accident.

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