Post-Recession Traffic Increases Accidents and Premiums
Accidents are always a scary topic in the freight transportation industry. While companies love the high-capacity trailers bringing in the goods consumers demand, one false move behind the wheel can lead to disaster.
As with anything else, there are certain factors which can decrease or increase the possibility of an accident. Even with the large size and dimensions of commercial vehicles, accidents are less probable when there is less traffic on the road.
The trucking industry has less to worry about with fewer members of the motoring public on the road. Despite efforts to help people learn how to handle their vehicles around commercial vehicles, tense situations still arise. But while roomier roadways have their positives for truck drivers, less traffic usually means a sluggish economy. This can translate into losses and dips in the freight transportation sector, putting carriers in a tough spot.
While truckers and trucking companies incurred more costs last year, many of these were related to accidents. An increase in traffic brought about by general economic optimism has led to more collisions and claims, with $700 million in claims being logged for commercial trucks in the last year.
Distracted driving now plays a role in accidents, driving the numbers up and leading to new records in 2016. Truckers have been targeted, with many carriers consistently taking a loss and finding that prices consistently rise.
The rising cost of premiums is a tricky expense for carriers. Like fuel and regulatory compliance, it is a cost carriers are forced to budget in somehow. For some carriers, they wish they had the luxury of trying to budget in insurance – some companies dropped carriers as a result of so many claims involving commercial vehicles.
The solution for trucking? Safety technology can do a lot to help prevent accidents, and to help truckers prove they were not at fault during any collisions that do occur where they may be falsely accused. Many truckers have claimed they are unfairly targeted, and placed at fault due to the size of their vehicle in any type of accident.
As insurance continues to be a crucial purchase for trucking companies, it will be interesting to see how those on the smaller end of the spectrum will deal with the rising cost.