There are thousands of businesses based in Alaska and they encompass many different industries, each of which has many different insurance coverage needs. If you are a business owner who relies on company-owned vehicles in your day-to-day operations, you will need to carry commercial vehicle insurance. Whether you own a large manufacturing company or a small retail establishment, you will need the extra liability protection that these policies can provide. Rates and policy offerings may vary considerably from one insurance company to the next, so Alaska business owners are strongly advised to compare a variety of commercial auto insurance quotes before making a selection.
Alaska Traffic Accident Statistics, 2009
- There were 12,890 vehicular accidents in Alaska in 2009
- These accidents involved 34,552 people
- Of these, 5,330 were injured and 64 were killed
- Accidents in Alaska average 261 crashes per every 100 million miles traveled
- The fatality rate is 1.3 fatalities per every 100 million miles traveled
- On average, a motor vehicle collision occurs once every 1.5 hours in this state
What Is Commercial Vehicle Insurance?
Commercial vehicle insurance is designed to provide liability and property damage coverage for company-owned vehicles. If you or one of your employees is responsible for an accident while driving a company car, your business can be held liable and the injured parties may be more likely to sue if they see the potential for a large payout. Because the risks are generally greater with these types of vehicles, you can expect the premiums for commercial vehicle coverage to be higher than for personal vehicles.
Commercial vehicles can range from cars, such as those used for pizza deliveries, to large tractor-trailers that are used to transport goods across the country. They can also include limousines, buses, taxis, cargo vans, construction vehicles, and pick-up trucks. In short, if a vehicle, or a fleet of vehicles, is owned by a business, it must be covered by a commercial vehicle insurance policy.
How Much Coverage Is Required in Alaska?
Different types of vehicles may have different insurance coverage requirements as mandated by the state. For example, company cars and many trucks and vans will be required to meet the same liability requirements as personal vehicles. In Alaska, these are:
- $50,000 for bodily injury per person
- $100,000 for bodily injury per accident involving two more injured parties
- $25,000 in property damage coverage per accident
Larger commercial vehicles, such as 18-wheelers and busses, will have much higher liability requirements. These requirements will be determined by:
- How much the vehicle weighs
- The type of cargo the vehicle is designed to transport (vehicles that transport hazardous materials, for example, will have high insurance needs)
- Whether or not the vehicle is designed to transport people (such as a bus or a passenger van) and, if so, the number of people the vehicle can carry
- Whether or not the vehicle will be driven through Canada and into the lower-48 states
If you are uncertain about how much liability coverage you need for your commercial vehicle, you can speak with an Alaska-based insurance professional to learn more about your state’s specific requirements.
Average Costs Associated with Collisions, 2011
- Vehicular accidents resulting in fatalities average about $1,420,000 in liability charges
- Accidents resulting in incapacitating injuries average about $70,500 in liability charges
- Those resulting in non-incapacitating injuries average about $22,700 in liability charges
- Property-damage-only collisions average about $9,100 in liability charges
What Does Commercial Vehicle Insurance Cover in Alaska?
There are a number of coverage options you can include with your policy. Not all options may be pertinent to your businesses, so it is important that you purchase all of the coverage you need while not paying for coverage that you do not. Some of the many coverage types you can expect to find in a commercial vehicle policy include:
- Liability insurance: This coverage is not optional. It is the most important coverage your commercial vehicle policy offers. It is designed to protect your business from liability charges if you or one of your drivers is responsible for a collision or injury while operating a company vehicle.
- Collision coverage: This is intended to cover collision-related damages sustained by your company’s vehicle, regardless of fault.
- Comprehensive coverage: This is designed to cover loss or damages to your company’s vehicles that is not crash-related. Covered events include such things as theft and vandalism, falling objects, fire, and flood.
- Medical payments coverage: This may cover associated medical costs if your driver or any authorized passengers in your company-vehicle are injured in a collision, regardless of fault.
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage: This coverage is meant to provide compensation for injuries and property damage if your driver is involved in a collision and the at-fault party lacks the necessary insurance coverage to cover the damages.
- For-hire (also called non-owned) vehicle coverage: This is designed to provide liability coverage for your company in the event that one of your employees is responsible for a collision while using their personal vehicle to do company business.
- Bobtail insurance coverage: This is meant to offer coverage for tractors at times when they are being operated without a trailer in tow. This coverage is applicable even if the truck is being driven for non-commercial purposes at the time of the accident, such as to or from a job site.
- Loading and unloading coverage: This is designed to provide financial compensation to your business or your clients if products or merchandise are damaged while being loaded to or unloaded from your company vehicles.
- Towing and labor coverage: This can provide compensation for specialized roadside assistance for your company vehicles if they become disabled while on the road.
It may be beneficial to discuss your company’s unique coverage needs with an insurance professional who can advise you about your options and help you determine appropriate coverage amounts.
Start Comparing Commercial Auto Insurance Quotes in Alaska
Commercial vehicle insurance is designed such that you can customize a policy to meet the needs of your particular business. When searching for the right insurance plan, it may be to your benefit to enlist the help of an independent agent in the Trusted Choice® network. These agents can answer your insurance-related questions and can help you compare a variety of competitively-price commercial vehicle policies that are suitable to meet your business’s unique coverage requirements.
Trusted Choice agents can be found in several locations throughout Alaska, so you may be able to find one close to your home or business. Contact a local agent to get more information and you can start comparing commercial auto insurance quotes in no time.