Commercial Truck Insurance Regulation

HISTORY OF TRUCKING INSURANCE REGULATION

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When trucking deregulation was enacted in 1980, barriers to entry into the industry were virtually eliminated, but insurance requirements have not been adjusted since then. Congress believed, as expressed in the legislative language, that financial responsibility requirements were needed to protect the public from undercapitalized or inexperienced carriers who might not be willing or able to pay the damages from crashes they caused. The primary instrument of financial responsibility is the requirement to carry liability insurance at a level of $750,000 per occurrence for general freight carriers and higher amounts for hazardous materials (HM) and passenger carriers.

The underlying problems to be addressed are how to provide compensation for victims of CMV-at-fault crashes whose costs to the victims exceed mandatory insurance limits that the carrier is unwilling or unable to exceed, and how to reform or remove carriers from service due to detrimental safety behavior, before they have a serious crash.

Three distinct groups of carriers—with two divided into subgroups—are covered by Federal insurance liability laws, not all of which are engaged in interstate or for-hire transportation. The vast majority of the regulated carriers are general freight carriers in interstate for-hire service, and these carriers have the lowest requirement for liability coverage. HM carriers are regulated whether for-hire or private, interstate or intrastate, and passenger carriers are regulated if they are for-hire.

Trucking is a low profit margin business, and profitability can depend upon small cost savings. There are two broad categories of carriers: small/medium size carriers with little equity, and large carriers that are self-insured and relatively safe. Smaller carriers seem to be especially sensitive to operating costs, including insurance and fuel. The motor carrier industry as a whole can be roughly divided into two groups. The upper tier carriers are and will likely be little affected by financial responsibility requirements and rarely engage in cost exporting.
The lower tier carriers, in contrast, may not necessarily internalize safety costs and may need to be constrained through financial responsibility requirements. Studies have shown that safety measures and outcomes are correlated with the net worth of the carrier.

Insurance rates are set based on the expected crash cost: crash frequency multiplied by crash cost. An insurance premium is simply the insurance rate multiplied by the number of power units. When a person or firm purchases insurance, it is effectively paying to join a risk pool to spread the cost of an adverse event over a larger base than just the assets of the individual or firm. The risk has an expected value, which is the probability of an adverse event times the cost of the event.


Read more at cite* https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/sites/fmcsa.dot.gov/files/docs/Financial-Responsibility-Study.pdf

Making a Living in the Final Mile

The “final mile” delivery dynamic, once mostly an afterthought for retailers, today has become a strategic and integral part of a company’s customer service and brand reputation.

 

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A growing number of carriers and logistics providers are stepping into the final-mile sector to help retailers meet these rising expectations.

One of the fastest growing areas for online sales has been in large products that require delivery and setup in the home.

The driver or delivery person must have “a level of presentability, customer service, product knowledge and communication skills, all oriented to the con­sumer,” he said, adding that these skills — including the ability to quickly and accurately assemble or install a product — are not necessarily inherent in the traditional truckload or less-than-truckload driver.

The rapid increase in online buying of large durable goods requiring last-mile delivery into the home is bringing new business opportunities for carriers. And thanks to e-commerce, it’s expected to continue to grow at a double-digit annual clip.

The challenge for trucking companies is how to address the market and develop the employee skills and management processes to be successful.

Strategies range from adapting current operations to service last-mile freight, launching new divisions, bolstering existing capabilities through acquisitions or buying current operators and then combining and building them into a national network through investments in facilities, technology and people.

In other cases, traditional LTL and parcel carriers are partnering with existing last-mile providers.

Unlike a traditional LTL network, which requires major investments in physical infrastructure and rolling stock, the hurdles to entry in the last-mile segment are not as overwhelming.

Thousands of agents, contractors and owner-operators with small fleets of commercial vans and straight trucks are operating in the market. Many of these operators contract directly with smaller retailers for local or regional deliveries or align themselves with national last-mile networks.

As e-commerce continues to represent an ever-growing percentage of a retailer’s sales, the choice of a last-mile delivery partner becomes even more of a strategic decision.

As one might expect, technology plays a crucial role in the last-mile space.

It’s a unique challenge. Technology platforms must pull in information about the consumer’s purchase from the retailer’s e-commerce transaction and warehousing systems, tie in the last-mile carrier’s dispatch and routing system, connect with drivers in the field, often over a smartphone or tablet, and provide across-the-board, real-time visibility.

Today’s consumers want to know at any minute where the truck is, and if it’s arriving on time. They also want an immediate feedback mechanism to rate the service or notify the retailer of problems, particularly with white-glove delivery, where the product is assembled or installed in the home.

To provide that level of visibility and service, e-tailers and last-mile delivery providers can turn to both established software vendors with years of industry experience and technology startups that are building apps from the ground up. Source * https://www.ttnews.com/articles/fleets-target-opportunities-growing-final-mile-sector

Good News For NJ Trucking Companies

For years New Jersey commercial trucking companies both small and large have had to play roulette with the same handful of commercial truck insurance companies, not anymore!

A 900 gorilla, Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Companies, has just entered the state and will provide some much needed relief for the over 45,000 commercial trucking concerns in the Garden State effective 08/15/2018.

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Berkshire Hathaway Homestate commercial trucking and property insurance in NJ (888) 287-3449.

If you are tired of the same high rates from the same few companies for your New Jersey based trucking business request a free quote from Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Authorized Representatives now at (888) 287-3449.

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Learn more about Commercial Truck Insurance In New Jersey.

Much like when Geico, a Berkshire Hathaway Homestate sister company entered the Garden State in 2004 the marketplace changed dramatically.  Many personal auto insurance companies that had made easy money for the past 40 years now had a major competitor.  Many commercial trucking insurance companies in the state have had the same captive marketplace domination and placed undue burdens and extremely high prices on trucking companies both new and established statewide.

Look for marketplace paradigm shifts to possibly happen with the New Jersey truck insurance markets  in NJ. The reign of the usual insurance companies and markets being blocked by Wholesalers and Managing General Agents that have refused agents access to the available insurance companies for decades and cherry picked the trucking customers that they wanted to write a policy for to maximize their profitability bonus from the insurance companies may be ending.

It will be interesting to see how it all works out, but if it is anything like when GEICO entered NJ, it will be a game changer!

 

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Big Rig Trucking and Urban Congestion

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Congestion in America’s growing cities is an big problem. While congestion can be a sign of healthy economic activity and the full use of roadway infrastructure, for the motor carrier industry congestion leads to increased travel times and, worse, reduced reliability of travel times. Congestion also increases vehicle operating costs (e.g., lower fuel economy, more frequent engine maintenance, etc.)

A related issue, and one that is perhaps more important for motor carriers, is the deterioration in travel time reliability in many urban areas. Freight shippers have become used to receiving a high level of highway-freight service, and can demand and receive schedule reliability such that deliveries consistently arrive in time windows of 15 or fewer minutes, even on runs of ten hours or longer. Whole systems of inventory control and supply-chain management have been built around the expectation that this kind of reliability is a permanent feature of freight service. As a consequence, carriers can be crippled by unexpected delays.

In our recent study indicated that on average, carriers value savings in transit time at between $144 and $192 per hour, while savings in non-scheduled delay are valued at $371 per hour.27 In other words, the time late (unexpected delay) was valued at roughly twice the rate of transit time. As congestion grows and a larger portion of roadway capacity is being used, highways are increasingly susceptible to this unexpected delay, with potentially serious implications for motor carriers.

In our interviews with motor carriers, most identified urban congestion as a problem that affects their productivity and service quality, but none put it at the top of the list. Clearly there is an expectation of some congestion in urban areas, and carriers adjust their operations to cope with it. What troubles some in the industry is the prospect that congestion will get worse, and thereby upset their logistical structure. For example, terminal locations and delivery schedules may be set up under the assumption of 500 miles of travel in a day, and large reductions in travel speed would force a costly change to this structure.

Elimination of urban congestion is virtually impossible, but a variety of strategies are available to reduce its extent or at least make it more tolerable. These strategies include: investment in more highway capacity; measures such as road pricing to reduce demand for highway travel or divert it from peak periods; and measures for more efficient use of the existing physical structure. While the motor-carrier industry would like to see more highway investment, some of their problem, especially reliability, may be best approached with improved information systems giving advance warning and improved incident management procedures to reduce the effect of incidents.

Several of the motor carriers we interviewed stressed the importance of avoiding peak periods whenever possible. Congestion is most acutely felt by the downstream end of the supply chain – shipments from distribution centers to retail stores, which are by inevitably located in populous and often congested areas. Carriers have advocated shifting deliveries to night or early morning hours, but this has been resisted by many retailers (and by some municipalities). Shifting driving to off-peak hours could also create greater accident risk if drivers operate vehicles during hours when their natural sleep cycle causes them to be less alert.

 

PSP MCMIS Data Update Hire Safer Drivers

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FMCSA studied PSP’s impact on safety and the results showed that companies using PSP to screen new hires lowered their crash rates by 8% and driver out-of-service rates by 17%, on average!

The FMCSA Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP) Website has been updated with the December 29, 2017 snapshot from the Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS).  The term “snapshot” refers to data captured from the MCMIS database as it appears on a particular date.

IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED

Account holders must use the new driver disclosure and authorization form before requesting a PSP record. Have you purchased your PSP record in the last five days? Access it again here for no charge.

DRIVERS, ACCESS YOUR PSP RECORD TODAY

Your PSP record includes your five-year crash and three-year inspection history from FMCSA’s MCMIS database and costs $10. Review your PSP record today! GET YOUR PSP RECORD

 

The program helps carriers make more informed hiring decisions by providing secure, electronic access to a commercial driver’s five-year crash and three-year inspection history from the FMCSA Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS). PSP records are available for commercial drivers and companies conducting pre-employment screening for the carrier industry.

The PSP customer service team is available Monday through Thursday from 8 AM to 6 PM ET, and on Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM ET.  You can email them at PSPhelp@egov.com or call them toll-free at 1-877-642-9499.

PSP records contain descriptions of any FMCSA-reportable crashes that occurred in the last five years, or roadside inspections that happened in the last three years. The record will show any crashes or inspections with which you were involved, without indicating that these incidents were your fault. View a sample PSP record.

PSP AND MVR: WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) PSP report and a state motor vehicle record (MVR) offer different
information. Both are important sources of data to consider when hiring a commercial driver. Let’s look at the differences.

WHAT’S IN A PSP REPORT?
• Crash and roadside inspection data are submitted to FMCSA and stored in the Motor Carrier Management Information
System (MCMIS). PSP reports consist of commercial motor vehicle driver information from the federal MCMIS database.
• A PSP report displays a driver’s 5-year crash history and 3-year roadside inspection history. This includes all serious safety
violations that are cited during an inspection. Conviction information is not included on the PSP report.
• When requesting a PSP record, motor carriers should submit each CDL number a driver has held in the last 5 years.

WHAT’S IN AN MVR?
• States maintain records of drivers’ motor vehicle convictions known as MVRs. Conviction data is posted
periodically to an MVR, depending on each state’s unique process.
• An MVR includes information related only to the driver’s license issued by a particular state and includes data for
any type of vehicle, including passenger cars, motorcycles, commercial trucks, and buses.
• An MVR displays only a driver’s conviction data, which typically remains on an MVR for 3-5 years, but this varies by state.

WHY ARE THE REPORTS DIFFERENT?
• An MVR shows what a driver has been convicted of by a state court.
• Citations, warnings, and tickets yet to be settled in the courts will not appear on an MVR.
• A PSP report includes violations collected at the roadside inspection or crash, which is sent to MCMIS. The PSP
report does not include citations, warnings, or tickets.
• Violations from a roadside inspection, or a crash, will not appear on an MVR. Convictions resulting from a
violation will appear on an MVR. These violations, however, will remain on the driver’s PSP report.
• A PSP report and MVR may not match, because a citation, warning, or ticket can be reduced by a state court.
• MVR records and PSP records are maintained by different sources. State agencies are responsible for MVRs.
FMCSA is responsible for the PSP report. The two records are not linked.
Motor carriers can access a driver’s MVR by contacting the motor vehicle division in the license-issuing state.

All records state where and when a crash or inspection occurred.  Crash records also note any fatalities, injuries, or towaways, and inspection records display any co-driver involvement and out-of-service status when applicable. The PSP record does not assign a score or point values.

The Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP) earned a Gold MarCom Award in the Promotion/Marketing Materials category for its redesigned program fact sheets. MarCom Awards recognize outstanding achievement by creative professionals involved in the concept, direction, design, and production of marketing and communications materials and programs. FMCSA and NIC Federal dedicate creative resources to encouraging PSP adoption.

MarCom is administered by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP). The international organization, founded in 1995, consists of several thousand marketing, communication, advertising, public relations, digital and web professionals.

 

Ford recalls 73,000 Transit vans, 30,000 F-150 pickups

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The reference number for this recall is 17S34.

Affected vehicles include 2015-17 Ford Transit vehicles built at Kansas City Assembly Plant from Feb. 3, 2014 to Aug. 2, 2017.The recall involves about 65,000 U.S. vehicles and some 8,000 in Canada.

Specifically, these affect 2015-2017 Transits and certain 2017 and 2018 F-150 pickups, with the Transit vans representing by far the largest number of vehicles being recalled.

I. 2015-2017 Ford Transit vehicles equipped with trailer tow module

Ford is recalling approximately 73,000 2015-2017 Ford Transit vans with trailer tow modules. Water can get into the module and connector, Ford said, potentially corroding wiring and damaging the module.

The reference number for this recall is 17S35.

II. 2018 Ford F-150 vehicles with 3.3L engine, 6-speed automatic transmission and column-mounted shift lever

Ford is recalling about 15,000 2018 Ford F-150 trucks with 3.3L engines, six-speed transmissions and column-mounted shift lever due to inaccurate gear selection that could result in unintended vehicle movement.

In affected vehicles, moving the transmission shifter from park to drive rapidly may cause loss of the “PRNDL” gear indication in the instrument cluster and momentary engagement of reverse before the vehicle moves forward. Read the entire article.

 

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Interstate or Intrastate what is the difference

What is the difference between interstate commerce and intrastate commerce?

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Interstate commerce is trade, traffic, or transportation involving the crossing of a State boundary.

Either the vehicle, its passengers, or cargo must cross a State boundary, or there must be the intent to cross a State boundary to be considered an interstate carrier.

Intrastate commerce is trade, traffic, or transportation within a single State.

If your operations include interstate commerce, you must comply with the applicable Federal safety regulations and Operating Authority rules, in addition to State and local requirements. You must notify the State in which you plan to register your vehicle(s) of your intentions to operate in interstate commerce to ensure that the vehicle is properly registered for purposes of the International Registration Plan (IRP), and International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA). The base State will help you by collecting the appropriate fees and distributing a portion of those fees to the other States in which you operate commercial motor vehicles.

If you operate exclusively in intrastate commerce , you must comply with applicable State and local regulations. The only Federal regulations that are applicable to intrastate operations are: the commercial driver’s license (CDL) requirement, for drivers operating commercial motor vehicles as defined in 49 CFR 383.5; controlled substances and alcohol testing for all persons required to possess a CDL; and minimum levels of financial responsibility for the intrastate transportation of certain quantities of hazardous materials and substances.

https://www.transportation.gov/faqs/default.aspx

What does it cost for obtaining my authority

What is the cost for obtaining a Big Rig Trucking Operating Authority?

What is the cost for obtaining an Operating Authority? We explain it here

Each individual Operating Authority is $300. Separate filing fees must be submitted with the application at the time of processing for each Authority sought. For instance, requests for Common Carrier of Property Motor Carrier and Contract Property Motor Carrier Authority will require two $300 fees ($600). Payments can be combined. FILING FEES ARE NON-REFUNDABLE.

1. You can file for the following operating authorities with the OP-1 Application For Motor Property Carrier and Broker Authority:

Motor Common Carrier of Property except Household Goods;
Motor Contract Carrier of Property except Household Goods;
Motor Common Carrier of Household Goods,
Motor Contract Carrier of Household Goods,
Broker of Property except Household Goods,
Broker of Household Goods,
United States Based Enterprise Owned or Controlled By Persons of Mexico Providing Truck Services For The Transportation of International Cargo (Except Household Goods);
United States Based Enterprise Owned or Controlled By Persons of Mexico Providing Truck Services For The Transportation of International Household Goods

2. OP-1(FF) – Application for Freight Forwarder Authority
3. OP-1(P) – Application for Motor Passenger Carrier Authority
4. OP-1(MX) – Application to Register Mexico-based Carriers for Motor Carrier Authority to Operate Beyond U.S. Municipalities and Commercial Zones on the U.S.-Mexico Border
5. OP-2 – Application for Mexican Certificate of Registration for Foreign Motor Carriers and Foreign Motor Private Carriers Under 49 U.S.C. 1302.

https://www.transportation.gov/faqs/default.aspx

FMCSA Update: ELD Information for Big Rig Truckers

The electronic logging device (ELD) rule – congressionally mandated as a part of MAP-21 – is intended to help create a safer work environment for drivers, and make it easier and faster to accurately track, manage, and share records of duty status (RODS) data. An ELD synchronizes with a vehicle engine to automatically record driving time, for easier, more accurate hours of service (HOS) recording. Sign up for a free ELD account right now.

The ELD final rule does not change any of the basic hours-of-service rules or exceptions. For more information regarding hours-of-service. ELD's will be a way of life for Big Rig Trucks. We have big discounts for trucker with ELD'S installed in Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee & Virginia (888) 287-3449.
ELD’s will be a way of life for Big Rig Trucks. We have big discounts for trucker with ELD’S installed in FL,GA,IA,IN,KS,MD,NC,NE,NJ,OH,PA,SC,TN & VA (888) 287-3449.

The FMCSA ELD Rule:
•Specifies who is covered by the rule and exceptions to it.
•Provides for ELDS to be self-certified and registered with FMCSA.
•Includes technical specifications to ensure ELDs are standardized and compliant.
•The rule includes a phased implementation timeline to give drivers and carriers time to comply.
•Rule also includes provisions to help prevent data tampering and harassment of drivers.
•Creates standard data displays and data transfer processes, making it easier to demonstrate compliance and faster to share RODS with safety officials.

ELD’s will be a way of life for Big Rig Trucks. We have big discounts for truckers with ELD’S installed in FL, GA, IN, MD, NC, NJ, OH, PA  & SC (888)287-3449.

The ELD Rule applies to most all of the motor carriers and drivers who are currently required to maintain records of duty status (RODS). The rule applies to commercial buses as well as trucks. Canada- and Mexico-domiciled drivers are included, unless they qualify for one of the exceptions to the ELD rule.

ELD Rule Exceptions

The following are not required to use ELDs (but carriers may choose to use ELDs even if they are not required):

  • Drivers who use paper logs no more than 8 days during any 30-day period.
  • Driveaway-towaway drivers (were the vehicle driven is the commodity) or the vehicle being transported is a motor home or a recreation vehicle trailer (at least one set of wheels of the vehicle being transported must be on the surface while being transported)
  • Drivers of vehicles manufactured before model year 2000.

Read more at the Official FMCSA website.

Big Rig Insurance Quotes

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FMCSA Establishes National Drug – Alcohol Testing FMCSA Drug Testing Truck Drivers

FMCSA Drug Testing Truck Drivers. This is a major safety win for the general public and the entire commercial motor vehicle industry
This is a major safety win for the general public and the entire commercial motor vehicle industry.

December 2, 2016

FMCSA Drug Testing Truck Drivers

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) today announced a final rule that establishes a national drug and alcohol clearinghouse for commercial truck and bus drivers. The clearinghouse database will serve as a central repository containing records of violations of FMCSA’s drug and alcohol testing program by commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders.

“An overwhelming majority of the nation’s freight travels by truck, and millions of passengers reach their destinations by bus, so creating a central, comprehensive, and searchable database of commercial motor vehicle drivers who violate federal drug and alcohol testing requirements has been a departmental priority,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “This system will be a new technological tool that will make our roads safer.”

Once the clearinghouse is established, motor carrier employers will be required to query the system for information concerning current or prospective employees who have unresolved violations of the federal drug and alcohol testing regulations that prohibit them from operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). It also requires employers and medical review officers to report drug and alcohol testing program violations.

The drug and alcohol clearinghouse final rule annual net benefits are an estimated $42 million, with crash reductions resulting from annual and pre-employment queries by FMCSA-regulated motor carriers.

“This is a major safety win for the general public and the entire commercial motor vehicle industry,” said FMCSA Administrator Scott Darling. “The clearinghouse will allow carriers across the country to identify current and prospective drivers who have tested positive for drugs or alcohol, and employ those who drive drug- and alcohol-free. Drivers who test positive for drugs or alcohol will no longer be able to conceal those test results from employers and continue to drive while posing a safety risk to the driving public.”

The final rule requires motor carriers, medical review officers, third-party administrators, and substance abuse professionals to report information about drivers who:
•Test positive for drugs or alcohol;
•Refuse drug and alcohol testing; and
•Undergo the return-to-duty drug and alcohol rehabilitation process.

Additionally, motor carriers will be required to annually search the clearinghouse for current employees, and during the pre-employment process for prospective employees, to determine whether a driver violated drug or alcohol testing requirements with a different employer that would prohibit them from operating a CMV.

Learn more at https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/newsroom/fmcsa-establishes-national-drug-and-alcohol-testing-clearinghouse-commercial-truck-and-bus