When you first started your business, it was easy enough to transport gear in your trunk or back seat. Over time, your operations grew. Soon you needed a designated commercial vehicle to drive on company time, then two. Even with customized up-fits to suit your industry, your handful of commercial vehicles inevitably grew into the fleet that you’re in charge of today.
It can be stressful to register and maintain one vehicle, let alone a fleet. On your best days, your convoy of commercial vehicles allows you to carry out tasks with the busy precision of a beehive. On your worst days, important details—like what you need to do to keep your fleet up to code—can slip through the cracks without extra attention.
Keep reading to learn more about the importance of keeping your fleet current, and protect your growing transportation needs with commercial auto insurance quotes from CoverHound.
Know City, State and National Requirements
Your fleet is supposed to help your business make money, not run up the cost of regulatory violations, tickets and fines. Different areas have different rules for registering and operating commercial vehicles. It’s your responsibility to comply.
For example, in Chicago , “commercial pick-up trucks, junk vehicles and any pick-up truck weighing more than 8,000 pounds are prohibited from parking on any residential and business streets." However, let’s say you’re a contractor completing a job at a specific address. You can legally park your commercial truck on the street if your vehicle displays your business name and license number and you display the worksite address on your dashboard.
This is just one small example of how following local rules can be the difference between a productive day at “the office" versus a day spent tracking down a towed commercial vehicle and paying the fees to get it back.
Teaching Fleet Safety Can Cut Down on Insurance Claims
Keeping your fleets up to code and training employees how to operate vehicles safely and legally can positively affect your company. Failing to do so can negatively affect your bottom line.
The Occupational Safety & Health Administration outlines one success story: Pike Industries, an asphalt paving company in Vermont with 280 vehicles (pickups, tractor-trailers, dump trucks, and more), instated a fleet safety program. New drivers and veterans worked together and completed classroom training on topics like federal regulations and accident avoidance, plus participated in discussions about ongoing safety. How did it go? Workers compensation claims dropped from 73 percent of total losses to two percent in just two years, even with over two million miles traveled.
The Fallout: Cargo Securement Violations
If your commercial vehicle is pulled over for a roadside inspection, what is most likely to earn your company a violation? As Trucking Info reports , the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance conducted approximately two million inspections and found that “failure to prevent shifting cargo" and “leaking/spilling/blowing/falling cargo" were the most common offenders.
The moral of the story? In addition to training your employees on proper practices for operating and maintaining your fleet vehicles, don’t forget to check on cargo securement practices regularly!
When your commercial fleet fails to meet legal and safety standards, your company stands to lose time, money and peace of mind. In addition to bringing your commercial vehicles up to code and keeping them there over time, it’s important to shop around for commercial auto insurance quotes with policy limits to accommodate your growing business.
The first step is knowing your options. CoverHound can help! Compare policies right here.