Luxury Coach & Transportation

January 2014

Magazine for the professional limousine, charter and tour industry.

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Page 37 of 75

SAFETY & INSURANCE PHOTO: ŠISTOCKPHOTO.COM / IA_64 Learning the hard way after a chauffeured vehicle accident leads to some memorable lessons on vehicle insurance. O By Linda M. Jagiela, LCT contributing writer ne typical April afternoon at our company, a senior chauffeur came to pick up his car and jobs. At 1 p.m., he was early for his 3 p.m. airport pick-up but he liked to take his time getting to the airport. With Philadelphia traffc, he believes, it's better to be safe and wait at the airport than to make a client wait because you are late. At 1:30 p.m., the dispatch phone line rang. Taking the overfow, I picked up the line to lend a hand. The chauffeur who had just left minutes before was on the line. "Hey, I just got whacked and good." Taken aback, I asked if he was O.K. to which he replied, "I think you better send Phil (my husband) up here." The accident was at the end of our street. He had waited at the traffc light to make a right. When he turned right, he was broadsided by a pickup truck traveling up the right-hand shoulder. We believe the driver had fallen asleep. The car was totaled. Our chauffeur suffered a broken leg and torn rotator cuff. The driver of the pickup truck appeared uninjured. My husband took pictures at the scene with the disposable camera that the insurance company provided while I jumped in another car and covered the chauffeur's frst job at the airport. My husband stayed at the scene and made sure our chauffeur was taken to the hospital. He returned to the offce and immediately called our insurance agent. Two Months Later After two months, we had not received a penny from our insurance company. Our business had gotten much busier and we were down both a car and a chauffeur. At our last renewal, we switched insurance companies from the one we had been using for many years. Key things we learned: t YOUR INSURANCE AGENT IS NOT YOUR INSURANCE C COMPANY. Just because you have dea with the same agent forever does ealt dealt w ot mean that the underwriter is the not m ame. same. Your insurance agent will shop ou around to get you the best rates. you ar Make sure that the companies they sur shop you to have a proven track record d in this industry. You may get what you pay for with a company that does not understand that a livery vehicle differs from a consumer's automobile. 36 KNOW WHAT YOU ARE PAYING FOR. If the price NOW diff diffe difference is too good to be true, check it out. T can be diffcult because typically This g you get your policy written on the last day before it is due for renewal. This doesn't leave you a lot of time to scrutinize the policy. Make sure that the sheet written up by y your agent matches what it is stated in p the policy. KNOW WHO IS MAKING THE DECISIONS FOR YOU. them who do the adjusting. These folks do not necessarily work for the underwriter themselves but are contracted, and again, may not know anything about the livery and for-hire industries. They hire appraisers to evaluate the vehicle. The appraiser also may not know anything about the for-hire industry. Understand that although they may handle adjustmen ments daily, it may be rare for them to enco encounter a livery vehicle. Within your insurance writer's realm, there are other people who work for READ YOUR POLICY! Y LIMOUSINE, CHARTER & TOUR JANUARY 2014 If I took a survey of WWW.LCTMAG.COM

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