Meridian, Mississippi has a diverse economy based on manufacturing, construction, and retail. Businesses in these industries use vehicles for all kinds of purposes, such as deliveries and sales calls. If you own a commercial vehicle in Meridian, you’ll want to protect your company with the right commercial auto insurance policy. Otherwise, crashes and other incidents can leave your assets at risk for large claims and lawsuits.
A local independent insurance agent can help you find an affordable policy that protects your assets and is compliant with all state and federal regulations. Independent agents aren’t tied to a single carrier. They can obtain quotes from multiple insurance companies, so you can be sure to find the customized commercial vehicle coverage that properly protects your unique business.
Why Is Commercial Auto Insurance So Important?
Commercial auto insurance is the equivalent of your personal auto insurance policy, but it protects vehicles and drivers associated with your business. If your business owns vehicles, this policy will insure your business for costs associated with collisions and other vehicle damage. It also provides liability coverage for your business if one of your drivers is at fault for an accident. You need commercial auto insurance to cover your business cars, trucks, and any other vehicles used in business operations. Your commercial auto insurance policy can cover:
- Vehicles that your business owns
- Vehicles that your business hires and leases
- All vehicles that are used for business purposes, including those that the business does not own, hire, or lease (e.g., when your employees drive their own personal vehicles for business purposes)
While driving any type of vehicle can be dangerous, driving a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) can be particularly dangerous—not just for truck drivers, but for everyone on the road. If one of your vehicles is involved in a crash, your business will be held accountable for any property damage, injuries, or fatalities that occur. A single lawsuit after a fatality can cost you millions of dollars in legal fees and damages. CMVs include large trucks, passenger vehicles, small package delivery vehicles, pick-up trucks with trailers attached, box trucks, and more. CMVs are frequently involved in accidents in Mississippi and across the US. Passenger vehicles involved in crashes with CMVs are highly vulnerable to damage, injuries, and fatalities.
CMV-Related Fatalities Recently in the US:
- There were 37,461 fatalities on America’s roadways in 34,439 motor vehicle crashes.
- There were 4,564 fatalities in 4,079 crashes involving large trucks or buses.
- Large truck occupants made up 16% of all large truck and bus fatalities.
- While CMVs accounted for only 4% of the registered vehicles on the roads, they accounted for 9% of motor vehicle crash deaths
Mississippi CMV Crash Statistics:
- Two-thirds of all Mississippi CMV crashes occur on a rural road, while one-third occurred on the Interstate.
- One-third of all Mississippi fatal crashes involving CMVs occur at night.
How Much Does Commercial Auto Insurance Cost in Meridian, MS?
Commercial auto insurance typically costs more than personal auto insurance because there are far more variables and risks to consider. The insurance company looks at what the vehicle is used for, the size and weight of the vehicle, the number of miles the vehicle is expected to travel each year, and even the items that are being transported.
The amount of coverage you need also affects what you pay for commercial auto insurance in Meridian. Keep in mind that you may not need the same coverage for every vehicle. Costs for Meridian commercial auto insurance vary from business to business. A company with a fleet of trucks will pay more than a small business with a few cars used for sales calls or deliveries. Some other factors that come into play include:
- The driving history of the drivers listed on your policy
- The age, make, and model of each vehicle listed on your policy
- The location of your business and vehicles
- Your company’s auto claims history
Because each insurance company has its own proprietary formula for calculating commercial auto insurance premiums, you can save a lot of money by shopping around for the most competitive price. And comparison shopping is easy when you work with an independent insurance agent who isn’t tied to one carrier.
How Much Commercial Auto Insurance Does My Business Need?
Commercial auto insurance coverage is determined by either state or federal law, depending on:
- The type of vehicle
- The vehicle’s weight
- The number of passengers
- What the vehicle carries (e.g., innocuous goods or hazardous materials)
- Whether it is engaged in interstate commerce
Most small business owners don’t have to worry about federal regulations for their business-owned sedans, vans, or pickup trucks. In these cases, Mississippi commercial auto insurance requirements are the same as for personal vehicles.
- Minimum liability insurance limits: 25/50/25; coverage up to $50,000 for all persons injured in an accident, subject to a limit of $25,000 for one individual; and $25,000 coverage for property damage
Passenger carriers, certain freight carriers, trucks over 10,000 pounds, carriers that travel across state lines, and vehicles that carry hazardous substances must follow federal regulations for liability insurance coverage. For-hire taxis and tow trucks might also need to comply with additional liability insurance requirements.
What Does Commercial Auto Insurance Cover?
Mississippi commercial auto insurance helps your business tackle expenses that are related to accidents and other mishaps with your commercial vehicles. It pays for physical damage to vehicles, medical bills for injured parties, and even repairing and replacing stolen or vandalized vehicles. Here are some typical coverage options for a commercial auto policy in Meridian:
- Collision coverage: Covers damage to your vehicle sustained in a collision, regardless of who was at fault.
- Comprehensive coverage: Covers the cost to repair damage to your vehicle due to non-collision events such as fires and property crimes.
- Uninsured motorist coverage: Covers your employee’s medical expenses and your vehicle’s damage following an accident caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver.
- Towing and roadside assistance: Covers the cost of a service call if your company vehicle becomes disabled while it is out on the road.
- Non-owned or hired auto liability insurance: Provides liability coverage for non-owned vehicles being used for business purposes, such as when you rent or lease a vehicle or when you or an employee use a personal vehicle for business purposes.
You might also want to consider purchasing commercial umbrella insurance. It adds liability coverage that is beyond the limits of your commercial vehicle policy. A local independent insurance agent can help you decide which of these coverage options will benefit your Meridian business.
Why Work with an Independent Insurance Agent?
Finding the perfect commercial auto insurance policy does not have to be difficult or time-consuming. Local independent insurance agents can answer your questions, offer advice, and provide you with multiple customized quotes from reputable insurance companies.
Contact an agent in or near Meridian today.
©2020, Consumer Agent Portal, LLC. All rights reserved.