Category Archives: Tow Trucks

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Times are tough, but don’t scrimp on your tow insurance coverage

In this economy, every business is looking for ways to save money. But cutting back on certain expenses now could mean heftier bills later.

Follow these tips so your tow business can save money and be protected from the unexpected:

Make sure you have the right amount of coverage.  Even if business finances are tight, don’t lower your liability coverage. Not only could you put your business assets at risk in the event of an accident, it could also jeopardize contracts that require you to carry specific limits.

Instead, make sure your physical damage coverage, which protects your vehicles in the event of a loss like a collision, theft or fire, accurately represents the value of your trucks. Most insurers do not automatically depreciate vehicles, so take a look at your policy to make sure you’re not overstating their current worth. You could save money by adjusting your limits.

Think before canceling your coverage altogether. Going without minimum liability insurance is illegal in most states, and should only be an option if you are temporarily putting your vehicles out of service. Additionally, keep in mind that if you drop your insurance now, you’ll pay more to get a new policy later because most insurance companies want to see proof of continuous coverage. Consider moving to a Comprehensive-only policy during temporary downtime to retain proof of continuous coverage and protect your trucks even when they’re not in use.

Protect yourself from uninsured and underinsured drivers.  You might not be the only one who’s looking to save a little dough – other drivers could cut costs by canceling their policy or reducing their coverage.  And if one of those drivers hits your truck, you could be left paying for the damages.  Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist coverage can protect you.

Keeping an eye on your insurance coverages can protect your business and save you money. Let us help. We can quote competitive tow rates and important tow coverages on the spot with Progressive. Call us today.

Save money on your tow insurance coverage

You want to save money on your vehicle insurance, but cutting back on coverage isn’t the answer. That definitely holds true for your vehicle insurance. If one of your tow trucks is in an accident, not having the right coverage could cost you twice: not only will you have to pay to get the truck repaired, you’ll also lose out on jobs while it’s in the shop.

Instead of scrimping on coverage, think about these other ways to save:

Consider raising your deductibles. If you would rather save a little money today but pay more out-of-pocket in the event your vehicles are damaged or stolen, a higher deductible may be right for you.

Keep in mind that driving history influences rates. Run Motor Vehicle Reports (MVRs) on potential hires. Your agent can help with this, just make sure to notify your employee(s) first. Also, tow businesses that require larger vehicles and whose drivers hold Commercial Drivers’ Licenses (CDLs) may qualify for pricing discounts.

Think about how you’re going to pay. Some insurers have significant finance charges associated with their bill plans, or don’t have flexibility in payment schedules. Look for companies that offer flexible pay plans, including low initial payments and no finance charges.

Shop around for insurance. One of the easiest ways to save money is to make sure you have a vehicle insurance plan that fits your business’ needs.  While commercial auto insurance can seem complicated, understanding the carriers, coverages and services available to you is the key to making an informed decision for your business. Coverages like On-Hook Legal Liability and Garagekeepers Legal Liability are designed specifically for tow businesses:

On-Hook Legal Liability covers towed property, and was recently expanded to cover more than just the vehicle you have in tow.  Cargo like equipment or raw materials and select personal items in towed vehicles are now covered if they’re damaged at any time between pick up and delivery. Plus, coverage for transmission and transaxle damage is now included. Limits for this truck insurance coverage are now available up to $100,000.

Garagekeepers Legal Liability covers vehicles being serviced, repaired or stored at up to three business locations. This coverage is also now available in limits up to $100,000.

Also, check with your insurance carrier to see what discounts they offer. Some carriers offer discounts to companies who pay in full, have been in business for more than three years, and more.

Regularly reviewing insurance costs can both save you money and keep your business moving forward. We’ll be glad to help. We can quote competitive tow rates and important tow coverages on the spot with Progressive. Call us today.

Seven tips to keep truckers safe and protected during the winter season

A carpet of fresh snow can be heartwarming when viewed from indoors in front of a roaring fireplace. But for a trucker, that beautiful landscape can mean treacherous roadways.

To prepare for brutal winter weather, here are a few tips from Bill Kampf, Progressive Commercial Auto general manager, to help protect against harm to you or your truck this season:

1.  Pull together a winter survival kit for yourself… – Make sure your truck is fully stocked with everything you might need so a stall-out or breakdown doesn’t leave you stranded.  Key items to include: a shovel, battery booster cables, ice scraper/snow brush, flashlight with extra batteries, and a space blanket to help prevent heat loss from a person’s body.  Additional items might include extra pairs of dry socks and gloves, energy bars or other non-perishable food, bottled water and spare fully-charged cell phone batteries.

2.  …AND your truck – Before the cold weather hits, equip your truck with new winter windshield wiper blades as well as winterized washer fluid and fuel. Also make sure that your tires, headlights, cooling system and battery are all in good shape. With all of these precautions, both you and your vehicle will be ready for any snow, hail, black ice or below freezing temperature that you might face out on the open road.

3. Slow down – Give yourself more time to react if something occurs in the road ahead. Compensate for poor traction by driving slower and making all changes slowly and gently.

4. Give yourself extra space in front and behind – To stay out of harm’s way in a sudden emergency, increase the distance between you and other vehicles and avoid driving in packs. Normal following distances should be increased to 8-10 seconds when driving on icy, slippery surfaces.

Look further ahead in traffic than normal to get a split-second extra to react safely. Awareness of other drivers can go a long way this time of year.

5.  Keep an eye on the temperature – Be alert to potentially dangerous road conditions. Touch the front of your outside mirror to see if ice is forming. If it’s forming on your mirrors, it’s forming on the road too. Be especially cautious when crossing bridges and overpasses where ice often forms first.

6. Check your favorite station – Listen to the weather forecast before you leave town. If travel seems hazardous, postpone your run.

7.  Be ready for the unexpected – No matter how cautious you are, you still need a safety net on the road. Specialized insurance coverages and services designed specifically for truck owners and operators are offered by commercial insurers like Progressive.

Check with your insurance company to see what they offer.  Make sure your policy has tailored solutions that meet the unique needs of you and your business, including:

  • Cargo Coverage to protect against damage or loss due to theft, fire, collision and hitting or running over cargo. Progressive’s Cargo Coverage includes no co-insurance penalty, no exclusion of coverage if a vehicle is left unattended, and no reduction in coverage limits for items such as electronic equipment.
  • Roadside Assistance that provides 24/7 towing, battery jump-starts, tire changes, emergency fuel delivery, locksmith service and on-scene labor.
  • Rental Reimbursement to pay for a replacement vehicle following a covered claim.

Bottom line: make sure you and your vehicle are safe and covered, even during the coldest and most treacherous winter months.

Progressive, in business since 1937, is a market leader in commercial auto insurance.

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