Washington, DC… The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association adamantly opposes recently introduced legislation that would drastically increase insurance costs for our nation’s small-business truckers. According to OOIDA, H.R. 3781, the INSURANCE Act, would effectively put countless small-business truckers out of business. OOIDA is the largest association representing the interests of small-business truckers with more than 159,000 members nationwide.
Introduced by U.S. Representatives Chuy Garcia (IL-4) and Matt Cartwright (PA-8) on July 16, H.R. 3781 would require truckers to carry nearly $5 million in liability coverage. The current requirement is $750,000, although most truckers have at least $1 million in coverage.
“There’s no correlation between insurance coverage and highway safety,” said Todd Spencer, President of OOIDA. “This bill would do nothing more than make trial lawyers even wealthier at the expense of our nation’s small-business truckers.”
In a letter, OOIDA points to a report conducted by the John A. Volpe Transportation Systems Center, which was commissioned by FMCSA and required by MAP-21.
“Volpe concludes that more than 99 percent of truck-involved crashes are covered by today’s limits. And in some cases, those that exceed today’s limits are usually covered by additional insurance or assets,” said Spencer.
OOIDA is also concerned about blatant conflicts of interests that are all too common in D.C.
“Rep. Cartwright’s family law firm boasts about suing trucking companies for gobs of money. That’s what they do. Considering trial lawyers generally receive 30 to 40 percent of a settlement – and in some cases much more than that – his interest in this issue is crystal clear: money,” said Spencer.
OOIDA contends there’s plenty of other issues Congress could tackle that would actually improve highway safety.