Category Archives for "Fleet News"

November 19, 2018

Insuring your fleet – Factors to Take into Consideration

Insuring Your Fleet: Factors to Take into Consideration

Fleet Insurance is a must for those that deploy multiple vehicles to run their business. Not only is it required by law, but it also helps to protect your investment so your business can thrive well into the future.  

What is the biggest advantage of having fleet insurance?

By taking out a multi vehicle policy to cover your fleet of vehicles the premiums will be lower. This is possible because you have decided to purchase insurance in bulk. It is the same principal with most commodities, the more you purchase, the higher the discount is.

How do determine which fleet insurance is right for your organization?

Before taking out an insurance policy, an organisation needs to assess how they use their vehicles. Items that factor into the selection for the right type of insurance policy include the following;

  • What types of vehicles are in the fleet?
  • The frequency of their usage.
  • How the vehicles are used in relations to the business.
  • How much coverage does each vehicle need?

What are the different types of insurance that can be grouped into fleet insurance coverage?

  • Third Party is the minimal amount of coverage required to put vehicles on the road in the UK. This type of policy covers the repairs and medical costs of the other vehicle when your driver is at fault in an accident.
  • Third Party Fire and Theft is the same as above but there is also protection if the vehicle is consumed by fire or stolen when not in use.
  • Full Comprehensive covers the repairs and medical costs of all vehicles and people who are involved in an accident when your driver is at fault.
  • Any driver fleet insurance is part of the policy where the vehicle is covered independent of who is operating the vehicle. This is needed when vehicles are not assigned to a specific driver.

Are there any other types of coverage a business should consider?

For protection against lawsuits a pblic liability policy is highly advised. This will cover the legal costs and any settlement when someone files an accusation against your business in court.

Because the fleet will be away from the office when in operation, the recovery of vehicles that break down is very handy to have. Unless a tow truck and mechanic are on staff, Breakdown assistance will cover the costs of recovering the vehicles when they become stranded on the road.

Does every vehicle have to be covered with the same type of insurance?

Each vehicle covered in a fleet insurance policy will have its own individual policy. While all of the policies can be the same, it is not a requirement. This makes it possible for the vehicle used by sales representatives to have Full Comprehensive while the delivery vans to be covered with a courier’s policy.

Conclusion

By taking out a fleet insurance policy all of the vehicles can be covered at a lower price. Because each vehicle is also covered with its own policy that fits the needs for how it is used, the correct type of coverage for each vehicle is obtained.

November 16, 2018

The Dangers that Fleet Drivers Face

The dangers that fleet drivers face are considerably more than commuters have to deal with due to their increase presences on the motorways across the UK and Europe. There are ways to reduce these dangers and keep your fleet drivers safer and in so doing reduce your costs for multi car insurance.

Will continuous training reduce dangers fleet drivers face?

Yes training is a key component to reducing accidents and risk levels of fleet drivers. With regularly schedule training session, the most important road safety hazards can be repeatedly discussed so the drivers will have these situations freshly implanted in their minds. These hazards include the following;

  • Overexertion from sitting for a prolonged time behind the wheel.
  • Driving at night.
  • Driving in severe weather.
  • Driving over poorly maintained roads.
  • Delivery deadline dilemma.

By providing your fleet drivers with a consistent message during the meetings, they will be better prepared to avoid the hazard when they encounter them on the road.

Does the driving style of the fleet drivers increase their risk factors?

Again the answer is yes. This is another area that can be discussed during training. By consistently reminding your drivers of the dangers certain aspects of driving styles they can reduce the risks. These styles of driving that need to be avoided include the following;

  • Reckless driving by constantly changing lanes, tailgating and speeding.
  • Being distracted while driving by using a cell phone, day dreaming, eating, drinking, reading and writing.
  • Fatigue will cause a driver to react slower to a situation and reduce their effectiveness when having to make a snap judgment when a hazard is encountered.
  • Being overly aggressive when driving includes cutting other drivers off, blowing horns, making obscene gestures to other drivers and flashing lights to get other to get out of your way.

What can a company do other than training to reduce the risks on their drivers?

While training is a vital component to reducing risk fleet drivers will face on the roads so are the right types of company policies all drivers must comply with while at work.

To help reduce fatigue there should be a time limit each driver has for continuously operating of a vehicle. Regularly scheduled breaks will reduce fatigue and help to keep drivers alert when on the road.

A policy on the proper use of a cell phone is a must today. There are many locations around the world where texting while driving is against the law. This should also be a company policy so it is in writing. The company should also provide the equipment so the phone can be answered and communication can occur while being hands free.

Each vehicle should also be regularly inspected to make sure they are road ready. This will reduce the risk of mechanical failures on the road.

The most important policy to have is a no tolerance on driving under the influence of alcohol.

Conclusion

A company can reduce the dangers that fleet drivers face by regularly scheduling training session and maintenance inspections on vehicles along with having the right policies in place.  An added bonus of having these measures in place is most insurance companies will reduce the premiums cost for van fleet insurance because the risks have been reduced.

October 7, 2018

5 steps to a lower premium

Tips on saving money on fleet insurance

The price of UK fleet Insurance continues to increase. The introduction of keyless car entry  is one of the key reason for the increase in car theft. As a result the price of auto insurance continues to increase. However, there are steps that can be taken to either reduce or keep the costs under control. 

“Cars are being stolen and driven off within seconds,”

Clkive Wain head of police liaison at Tracker

The risk of claim is a main factor in determining your company fleet insurance costs.  

Be proactive and act on the advise below. Communicate with your broker on these and any other measures that could reduce your annual premiums.

1 Telematics

Increasingly technology is improving driving and also reducing the likelihood of accidents. Telematics enables each driver to receive the exact type of training required to reduce avoidable accidents. 

In addition the software will also enable intelligent route planning  based on both historical and real time information. Search for Telematics and Fleet manage for range of software as a service offers all available in the cloud

2 Theft Risk Faraday Wallet

Security is now the number one factor used in determining  your insurance premium. However, it is possible to take steps to reduce keyless car theft. One cheap method is to keep the keys in a metal box or a microwave. Faraday wallets are also available and will provide the same protection as a metal box.

3 Vehicle Security Tracking Devices

Fit concealed trackers that will enable you to track the exact location of any stolen fleet vehicle.

4 Third Party Only 

If you manage a large fleet it may be worth the self insure approach. Effectively you provide  your own fleet cover and just purchase the legal minimum of third party.

5 Combined Insurance

Give your broker all of your insurance business, including employee liability and public liability. In return most brokers will reward you with an attractive discount on your mot fleet insurance.

October 6, 2018

Employee Car Allowance or Small Fleet

Car Allowance or Fleet

Employee Car Allowance or Small Fleet

Are you facing the question of starting a small business fleet or providing a car allowance to your employees? Both options have benefits and the choice will depend on your business type and needs.

Having a business fleet of vehicles brings with it additional overheads, but if your company provides a delivery service the fleet option may be the only route. The first question that you must address is should you lease or buy. Each option comes with both advantages and disadvantages and you must select the one that best meets with your business requirements both now and the near future. Always look ahead when planning to make  substantial investment.

Before proceeding with a  leased fleet spend time to work out estimates for your additional costs including lease payments, fuel and fleet maintenance. Will managing the fleet be a full time job? If yes then add in the costs for an additional salaried employee. If the costs make it unfessible you can consider paying your employees an allowance toward a  company car. The employee then leases direct saving you the worry of having to manage a business fleet.

Either approach will still require consideration of the type of insurance needed for the fleet business vehicles. This will depend on the vehicle use and your broker will be able to advise you further on the options for your individual business requirements.

Small fleet insurance will provide cover of all your business vehicles under one policy. The details of the policy will determine the costs. The more flexibility in the insurance conditions the more expensive, but flexibility may be a requirement that your business needs. With large fleets business fleet insurance will provide cover for different vehicle categories for example salesmen cars, delivery cars, vans or even large trucks.

Whichever route you choose spend time selecting the fleet manufacturer provider based insurance categories and the costs to repair and maintain that particular fleet model.

August 8, 2018

Reduce Insurance Costs

how to reduce fleet costs

Checklist to save money on fleet policy costs

  • New customers or renewal time – Most brokers offer attractive introductory discounts for new customers, so it does pay to shop around at renewal time.
  • Reduce your annual mileage – If possible agree a cap on your fleet mileage with your underwriter or broker. Reducing time on the road will also reduce risks and thus you insurance costs.
  • Build a history of no claims discounts – This can play a big factor in reducing fleet cover costs so work at reducing the number of claims. Reducing claims should result in significant savings on your annual or monthly insurance costs.
  • Build a history of no claims discounts – This can play a big factor in reducing fleet cover costs so work at reducing the number of claims. Reducing claims should result in significant savings on your annual or monthly insurance costs.
  • Black Box : The idea here is to show your insurer that you pose less of a risk because you or your drivers are considered safe drivers. The black box records your driving, for example how quickly and how often you break, speed, extreme or jerky steering.
  • Regular Service : Some accidents are partly the result of vehicles that are not running 100%. For example a braking system that has been left unchecked. Pursuing a company wide policy of regular servicing alongside driver safety checks will help reduce accidents.
  • Driver Age : Drivers under 25 attract a higher premium, if possible ensure all drivers are over 25 or if possible over 30.
  • Security - Add additional security devices approved by the UK insurance industry.
  • Increase the excess - Taking more responsibility for the costs of any future claims by increasing the policy excess amount will be rewarded by a policy discount. Before taking this route ensure that you will be able to afford to pay the excess in the event of an accident.
  • Expert advice – Take advice from the insurance specialists when unsure of what you should include and the level of cover required.
  • Named Drivers : If possible avoid any driver fleet insurance and choose named drivers only.
  • Security - Add additional security devices approved by the UK insurance industry.
June 26, 2018

What is SORN

Old Car

How  SORN can save you money

If you manage a motor fleet you will no doubt know what SORN is and how it can be used to the benefit of your company. In a nutshell applying for SORN will enable you to stop paying tax and insurance for a fleet vehicle that will no longer be driven on the public roads in the UK. 

For those of you that have an off-road only vehicle you need to know what SORN is and how it will affect your pocketbook. Understanding this legal technicality about owning a vehicle that will not be used on a public road begins with what the acronym stands for or Statutory Off Road Notification.

What can I declare as SORN?

Examples of vehicles that will fall under this category of motorized vehicles include land transportation that will only be used on private land of the owner of the vehicle. It will also include off road vehicle that will be transported to locations off of public roads for use as entertainment or amusement by the owner of the vehicle.

Other vehicles that can be classified as SORN include this collectible and scrap vehicles stored in garages.

  • Vehicles that are not taxed or insured are considered SORN.
  • If the owner of a vehicle plans to part it out and sell it in pieces it can be listed as SORN. This can be an older vehicle that no longer operates or one that has been involved in a motor vehicle accident and is no longer road worthy.

What if I don't apply for SORN

As a legal point, if a SORN is not declared or the official paperwork is not completed, an owner of a vehicle can be fined up to £80 for owning a vehicle and not paying taxes on it.

How to get a vehicle listed as SORN

If you vehicle is not road worthy, not taxed and uninsured it must be declared SORN as soon as possible. If this is not done you may well be fined. 

  • To have a vehicle listed as SORN, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency or DVLA of the UK has to be officially notified by registry that a vehicle is now declared SORN.
  • If the owner of a vehicle plans to part it out and sell it in pieces it can be listed as SORN. This can be an older vehicle that no longer operates or one that has been involved in a motor vehicle accident and is no longer road worthy.
  • When the owner of a vehicle decides to deport the vehicle like selling a vehicle to a new owner in a different country it is also considered SORN.
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    Once the paperwork is complete with the DVLA, the SORN will take effect on the first day of the next month.

Recent change to SORN

A recent change to the SORN system is that once a vehicle is listed as a SORN, it will remain there indefinitely. In the past each vehicle had to be relisted every 12 months. That requirement has been removed.

For the car restoring enthusiasts, once their vehicle is close to or is ready for use on public road, insurance and taxes must be paid before the vehicle can be tested on a public road in the UK. If this is not done, then the owner and driver of the vehicle can be fined for operating an illegal vehicle on public roads.

Article contributed by Eamonn Turley

June 3, 2018

Keep your vans operational with regular checks

Van Maintenance

Simple routine vehicle checks 

Keeping you multi car fleet maintained will reduce  preventative incidents, leading to less time that your fleet vehicles spend in the local garage. The following routine checks will not take more than 30 mins and can be carried out by the driver, initial training is advised to ensure all drivers understand how to carry out these checks and also the importance of these checks.

Tires

Tires take the most wear and tear and connect your van to the road. Start by checking:

  • Thread depth, at least 1.66 mm.
  • Tire Condition look for uneven wear and tear or bumps.

  • Correct pressure, this is critical for safe and economical driving. ( should be checked at least once per month )

  • check-circle
    If you use snow tires remember to change during summer, this will also save you on fuel charges.

Oil keeps everything  working

Oil is paramount in the smooth running of any engine, failure to change oil as required including the oil filter will lead to damage to the moving parts of you engines. The damage caused can be very expensive to fix and in some extreme cases require an expensive retooling or replacement. 

Hoses and Belts

With the latest advances belts play less of a roll indeed if any role in the modern engine, however some manufactures still rely on timing belts. Belts do wear out and failure to replace in time as per the manufacturer's instructions can result in a hefty bill to sort your engine block out.

Battery

The key here is to replace your battery  before you are let down badly by a car that fails to start. Any quick fit operation can quickly run a check and provide you with a print out, showing you how well your battery is functioning. The test will check your batteries's ability to self charge and start your car, with an overall score which will indicate either good or time to replace.  

Taking preventative steps will pay dividends down the road

Following the checks outlined above will reduce roadside breakdowns and reduce the number of hours that your valuable fleet of cars or vans are sitting in a garage.

Article contributed by Eamonn Turley

April 28, 2018

Fully Autonomous Vehicles

driver less cars

Driver less Cars are Coming

Below I have outlined some of the challenges and ethical questions that need addressed before we reach the goal of a car that is 100% driver-less ( no pedals and no steering wheel!).

Why should fleet managers be concerned with advances in driver-less technologies? Because these advances  will drastically reduce the number of car accidents and this should lower the cost of multi car insurance.

The race to create a vehicle that reaches level 6 on the scale of the the Society of Automotive Engineer, which translates to a fully autonomous vehicle or in plain English a vehicle that does not need human intervention. Level 1 is car with no automation built into the 3 key driving elements (steering, braking and the gas pedal).

The Case for Smart Cars

Currently in the USA and I am sure these figures will be similar in the UK 94% of accidents are the result of driver error. 3 million plus people have vision problems that prevent them from driving and let’s not forget senior citizens who are no longer able to drive. The journey to fully automated driving will drastically reduce road accidents and give the right of mobility to many more people in out society.

Should cars be 100% autonomous

This is being debated, but in the meantime we have to answer some ethical questions. One of these questions is referred to as the trolley scenario.In this case you have a trolley moving down a rail line and in front five people are in its path. The trolley can only take one action to avoid killing the 5 people and that is by switching track, but one child is on the other track. Can you see the dilemma?

Some questions that need to be addressed first

Can you see the dilemma given the knowledge that these cars rely on deep learning which is a form of artificial intelligence to make decisions.  The artificial intelligence is a form of deep learning in which neural networks are trained by human engineers or programmers to take the appropriate action when driving autonomously. 

So one of the ethical question is what do you train the AI to do?  In addition should we allow these types of death and life decisions to be made by an artificial intelligence? Do we give equal weight to human life or should other factors be considered such as age? Should you the driver be killed in taking the necessary preventive action to minimize the outcome of an auto accident by artificial intelligence?

Should Drivers always be on standby.

If level 6 is too much to contemplate lets consider levels 4 and 5. These cars are fully automated to drive in any weather condition, but will alert the driver when an accident that is unavoidable will occur and let the driver take the appropriate action so an artificial intelligence is not responsible for killing humans.

Some road accidents will still happen

In the recent TESLA fatal accident the cars was operating at level 4 and it would have notified the driver by noise and if necessary touch that it needed human intervention. The accident is still being investigated as to why the standby driver did not take action. These cars rely heavily on artificial vision by using radar, cameras and LiDar in combination to create a 3D map of the driving environment. One theory is that one of these sensors malfunctioned which may have been caused by something as simple as dirt on the lenses.

Fleets of the future and the cost of Fleet insurance

Without doubt cars will continue to get safer as these new technologies are applied to new cars. Limits on driving hours will most likely be removed or increased as driver tiredness will be less of a factor in accident cause. The big question for fleet managers is will their fleet insurance costs be reduced? Possibly you would think, but would any decrease in insurance costs may be offset by the increased cost of vehicles with this new technology. LiDar is not cheap.

In my view long term these costs will come down like any new technology and we will all benefit  by drastic reductions in road accidents which will reduce fleet insurance costs.

Article contributed by Eamonn Turley

April 1, 2018

Telemetrics – reduce fleet insurance

telematic device

How can Telemetrics reduce fleet costs

Need to save on fleet insurance? Start by adding a small device is added to your vehicle, that will record data on the driver. Typical things recorded include:

  • check
    Rate of acceleration and deceleration (braking)
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    Driving speed
  • check
    How often the driver brakes
  • check
    Steering data, example sharp cornering

All our intelligence suggests that monitoring by telematics is increasingly accepted . . . as a fact of life and the benefits more fully understood,

Ralph Morton, editorial director of Business Car Manager

This information can also be used to plan quicker routes this coupled with safer slow driving will also reduce fleet fuel costs, which by itself is a significant running cost.

This type of data enables the fleet manager to identify areas in which driving can be improved and enacting that by provision of additional training. To help get your drivers on board involve them, for example awarding prizes for best drivers, or create driving teams that compete against each other. In some cases this approach has made a significant reduction in claims. This not only reduces your company insurance costs, but also will decrease the time vehicles are off the road for accident repair. 

How can telematics reduce your fleet polciy premiums

Being able to substantially  reduce the number of claims made against you fleet insurance policy puts you in a strong position at renewal time. This position can be used as leverage to negotiate a reduction in your fleet costs. Why? Your insurance premium cost is partly based on the number of claims that you make. 

Some of The Rewards That Can Be Achieved

  • Significant reduction in claims.
  • decrease the time vehicles are off the road for accident repair.
  • information can also be used to plan quicker routes.
  • safer slow driving will also reduce fleet fuel costs,which by itself is a significant running cost saving.
March 19, 2018

7 key areas of fleet management

key areas of fleet management

7 Key Areas of Fleet Management Costs

1 Get the fleet foundations right

Insurance costs tend to increase or at best to stay level, but taking some prudent measures can lead to a reduction in your fleet policy costs. If you are a fleet manager you will understand that insurance is multi faceted with the premium based on a number of factors, one key factor is the fleet itself. Have you been wise and able to choose a manufacturer that has a sound reputation for building sound and reliable motors and at a reasonable cost? In addition the vehicle category selected should be easy and inexpensive to service with the price of replacement parts within the norm.  

If you have the correct fleet type in place you may congratulate yourself in having taken the first major step in lower company fleet insurance.

Work with your insurance broker

Some key areas that you need to put all your energy and commitment into is the lowing of claims and taking measures to convince your insurance company that you are taking the correct steps to continue to lower your risk profile and frequency of future claims.

Get the drivers on board to reduce accidents

Start by taking control and bringing on board the drivers, let them know that the company focus is lowering fleet costs and that reducing the frequency of accidents plays a big role .

Let the workforce know that all accidents will be monitored and in cases that the accident is down to driver error, additional training will be provided. At the same time it could be wise to initiate a rewards program, maybe team based to get drivers motivated and tied into the new way forward.

2 Driver Training

Don't wait until the accident has happened be proactive and provide additional training. Use your knowledge that young drivers under 25 are more risk and if they need a company car can the driving be restricted to within office hours or daylight hours. Whilst that may seem unfair it has been proved to be effective to lowering accidents and thus premiums and the government is backing a similar approach  .

3 Install dash cameras

These are mostly forward facing, but you can also get cameras that can record in front and behind the vehicle. These can help  defend against any false claims or what is known within the industry as crash for cash. It also has a hidden benefit of intimidating any would be tailgaters once they see the camera ( even if not rear facing you can swivel it around so they now  they are being filmed).

Another added benefit that has been noticed is that the driver behind the wheel no longer drives in a manner that is risky which in turn leads to a lower number of accidents in which your drivers are at fault. 

4 Install Tracking Devices

A concealed tracking device will enable the location of your vehicle to be instantly available to the police. Cybit is one of the leaders in this technology and trusted by the insurance industry

5 Trim your policy

Don’t include insurance for things that you do not need or things that can be replaced cheaply by your company take for example windscreens.  Breakdown recovery is another option that can be outsourced to a local recovery company that provides coverage in the region that you operate or nationally.

6 Report all accidents quickly

The insurance company must know of any accident immediately in order to reduce and mitigate any claims from the third party. For example if the third party intends to hire a replacement vehicle your broker may have arrangements with a hire firm to provide this at a vastly reduced cost. If the underwriter has not been informed in a timely manner the third party may have gone direct to an expensive car rental agency.

7 Be honest

Fighting a claim that you are guilty of can turn out to be expensive. If you are at fault it is best to admit it and reduce any court costs that most likely you or rather your underwriter will be then liable for.  

The above list whilst not exhaustive is a good starting base as you embark on applying approaches to lowering the cost of company fleet insurance