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Skip Vehicle Insurance.


Skip Vehicle Insurance. So, you’ve got an Operators Licence and a Waste Carriers Licence, what’s the next thing that you need to arrange to remain the right side of the law? “Insurance”......

For many, insurance is a grudge purchase, one of the most expensive and sometimes one of the most “annoying” aspects of running an HGV. Have I got the right cover, am I paying the right price?

So, you pick up the phone and start to go through a mass of telephone numbers, speaking to call centres, people from different areas of the country, some speaking “gobble-de-gook”, some just wanting to sell you - this insurance, that insurance – do I need it all – what does it all mean? Aaaaarggghhhh – please, please, please – speak in ‘Laymans’ terms to me! If I tell you it’s a ‘Ro-Ro’, I half expect my insurance company/broker to know what a ‘Ro-Ro’ is – if you don’t know what it is, what else don’t you understand about my business?

Insurance Companies or Brokers need to know all about you, your experience and your skip hire insurance history, your age, no claims bonus, details of your convictions and accidents.... the list goes on.

When you arrange insurance, the insurers have a very specific set of questions usually asked in a similar order, starting with name, address, vehicle details and then cover details. The attention to detail is “what’s in the middle”. You MUST make sure you are asked all the relevant questions which are peculiar to you, such as, do you have any motoring convictions, have you had any accidents claims or losses on ANY motor insurance, any NON MOTORING convictions or any disabilities or infirmities. Not only does this apply to you, but it applies to all known drivers, so if you are asking for “Any Driver”, this will come with a number of if and buts. Let’s talk about Any Driver for a moment.

Any Driver doesn’t actually mean ‘Any Driver’ –as it always comes with restrictions and limitations.

First and foremost, all known drivers who will drive the vehicle regularly MUST be disclosed to the insurers, including their age, conviction, accident and driving history. Secondly, Any Driver usually limits the drivers to “...use in connection with the business”, so they may not automatically be provided with Social, Domestic and Pleasure Use. Thirdly, Any Driver usually comes with age restrictions, so drivers normally have to be over 25 and under 65. Last but not least, drivers would normally have to have held a licence for the type of vehicle being driven for at least 12 or 24 months, before they are automatically acceptable under Any Driver cover.

Some helpful tips on how to stay the right side of your insurance company;

  1. Always, tell the truth! – Never lie about your circumstances! When you arrange insurance, more often than not the insurance company holding the cheque book which pays the claims, won’t check anything you’ve told them until after an accident occurs. Insurance is arranged in “utmost good faith” i.e. “you tell me the truth, we’ll pay your claim when something happens”!
  2. There is no such thing as cheap insurance. If something is cheap, usually there’s something different to everything else on the market. There is economical insurance where the insurance company reduce the cover or increase the excess. Again, sometimes, you won’t find out about the cheap or economical element of the insurance policy until an accident occurs. Look for insurance that covers what you use your vehicle for; some hints on exclusions are as below.

 Look out for nasty policy exclusions:

If your cover is Comprehensive, does the policy cover “Accidental Damage” to your vehicle if it rolls over whilst loading or unloading a skip or container? Some cheaper policies may exclude this. How would this impact you if your vehicle was written off and your insurers waved their finger at you saying, “Sorry, clause 976 of 4084 says ‘no cover whilst tipping’” and as such, you’re not covered!

Does your policy cover claims whilst the keys are in the vehicle? So, your man (or woman) is stood to the side of the vehicle operating the loading equipment, with the engine running. Someone decides to jump in the wagon from the other side and take her for a spin or “joy ride” as is affectionately known. Under your insurance policy, you may well be covered for the damage the joy rider causes to property and vehicle they smash up whilst out on his merry way, but then when your vehicle eventually stops and is written off , you may find the theft isn’t covered ... because clause 1097 of 11,584 states ... if the keys are left in the vehicle ... we will not pay for theft of your vehicle if the keys are left in the vehicle and the doors or and windows of the vehicle are not locked at the time of the loss....” In this scenario - Not covered – again!

If you own more than one vehicle, it’s often more convenient to insure all the vehicles under one policy. There are a number of reasons for this.

  1. Premium, you are likely to get a better “premium” per vehicle if one insurer covers all your vehicles – i.e. there’s more “fat on the bone” for the insurers to get their teeth into.
  2. One renewal date – it’s easier for you at renewal to make sure, once a year, that you are paying the right premium.
  3. One place to call to perform all adjustments – imagine having 5 vehicles insured with 5 different insurance companies and then imagine trying to add a new driver onto each policy. Open to error for all parties concerned.
  4. Accidents. When you have an accident in one vehicle, did you know that you have a duty to advise other insurers of that accident? This is called “the non-disclosure trap”. If you fail to advise all insurers of accidents as and when they happen you could end up having your insurance policy cancelled or worse still – void from inception - as you have had accidents elsewhere and not advised all the relevant insurers. “Void from inception” hurts, it means the insurance is cancelled from the date it starts – you get your premium back you paid but you are left to deal with any claims that may have occurred.

Top “Skip Hire” Insurance Tip!

Find a reputable insurance broker and insurance company that understand what you do, make sure the person arranging your insurance knows what you do and how you do it.

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