What To Look For In UK Truck Insurance

by : Luke Humble

The world of HGV insurance has never exactly been the most thrilling, and while I'm aware that writing an article on what to look out for in haulage insurance is enough to put a good deal of my readers into a narcoleptic coma, I nonetheless think it's an important, and sometimes confusing, issue worth covering. I hope that this article will prove to be of some use for those struggling in reams of small print and clauses.

Firstly, you may ask why you need insurance. That is to say, why you need specific UK truck insurance, because obviously there's a legal requirement to have basic vehicular cover to be on British roads in the first place. Extra cover, like goods in transit lorry insurance can seem a lot of extra hassle to arrange, and an unnecessary cost in times when some owner operators and haulage companies are trying hard to make ends meet, but it's worth considering the extra security your customers will feel knowing their goods are properly protected. Well publicised UK lorry insurance can lend an extra air of legitimacy to an unproven owner operator starting out for the first time. And of course it's not just about appearances - if goods are damaged on the road and you're not insured, you're going to have to either pay for the damages yourself, or endure a drawn out legal battle with someone who could have become a good customer. Likewise, if the employees of a big haulage company have an accident and blame the owners, some kind of protection can make all the difference towards an amiable resolution.

So here's a rundown to the types of UK truck insurance on offer, and what they provide. Some are compulsory, while others are optional - and it's up to you to decide whether you can do without them, though obviously I have my own views that I shall share along the way...

Vehicle Insurance

Any vehicle on the road must be insured - that's a legal requirement which most people are aware of, and naturally it counts for lorries as well! This is obviously a major expense for owner operators starting out, so it actually makes sense to see how prices compare for different lorries before you decide which type you intend to purchase, allowing you to save on your vehicle's haulage insurance.

Goods in Transit Truck Insurance

It's worth stumping up the extra cash for 'Goods in Transit' insurance as well. This will protect your cargo against loss and damage, which can offer real peace of mind when you're loading up delicate valuable into the back of the truck. Be sure the haulage insurance you select will cover you to a high enough value - if you're claiming for damage to items worth £20,000, and you only have goods in transit truck insurance for goods valued up to £10,000 then you're going to be paying half the damages!

Your main insurance company might cover this, but if not, then it's very easy to get this from specialist UK lorry insurance dealers. This is especially worth considering for new owner operators, as it makes you seem more legitimate and people will feel they have the peace of mind to take a chance on you, in all your untested glory.

Public Liability

This one may not be as necessary as the other two, but is still worth considering, especially for new owner operators with butter fingers! This aspect of UK lorry insurance will cover you for incidents involving your customers, for example if you drop their entire batch of pianos on their foot. It does more for backup basically, and gives you extra legal grounding should accidents happen.

Continental Lorry Insurance

This one is something that's either essential or pointless, depending on how you do business, but it's really easy to work out, of course: Do you spend any of your work hours delivering loads abroad on the continent? If yes, then you need continental haulage insurance, if not you can save that money and stick to a UK truck insurance policy.

These options vary between essential and optional, but all should be carefully considered - it really doesn't pay to cut corners to make a short term saving, and HGV insurance can really offer you some essential leeway should things go wrong, whether you own a fleet of freight vehicles or are a humble owner operator. If you are looking to insure an entire fleet with lorry insurance, it's worth remembering that discounts are often available and wide ranging, so don't be afraid to shop around!