Buses may be commonly seen on roads, but they’re still unique vehicles. Few other vehicles are made to transport as many people as busses can hold. Because they’re unique, buses often require specialized bus insurance policies.
Bus insurance is a form of commercial auto insurance that’s been uniquely tailored to the needs of bus operators. When underwriting policies, insurance companies consider the potential risks that bus operators face and the protections that can help mitigate those risks.
There are a number of different businesses that may operate buses and therefore, need a bus policy. Some examples of businesses that frequently purchase this type of insurance include:
Charter bus companies
Coach bus companies
Tour bus companies
School bus contractors
Since each of these businesses uses their buses differently, their insurance requirements frequently vary. Most bus policies can be customized to meet a particular business’ specific needs. An experienced insurance agent who’s worked with other bus companies will be able to help a business determine what coverages are right for them.
Like other commercial auto policies, bus policies typically have a number of coverages that work together to form a web of protection. Some of the coverages that a policy might offer are:
Bodily Injury Coverage, which normally covers injuries that people outside a bus sustain during an accident
Personal Injury Protection, which normally covers injuries that a bus driver and their passengers sustain during an accident
Medical Payments Coverage, which normally covers medical care for injuries sustained by the bus driver and passengers
Property Damage Coverage, which normally covers damage caused to other people’s property during an accident
Collision Coverage, which normally covers damage that that a bus sustains during a multi-vehicle accident
Comprehensive Coverage, which normally covers damage a bus sustains during other incidents
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage, which might cover accidents caused by other drivers who don’t have adequate insurance
While all of these coverages are important, the coverages that protect onboard passengers deserve special attention. Many passengers don’t wear seatbelts while riding buses, which may leave them at greater risk of being injured if there’s an accident. Additionally, claims can quickly become expensive if multiple passengers are injured. For these reasons, operators should carefully consider how much personal injury protection, medical payments coverage, and uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage they want.
As is true with most kinds of insurance, the premiums charged by insurance companies for bus policies are dependent on many factors. Some of the items an insurer might consider when setting a policy’s rates include:
How many buses are being insured
How many seats each bus has
How long drivers have been driving commercially
What drivers’ past driving records are like
How many miles the insured bus(es) are driven annually
For some businesses, there are other considerations that come into play. Businesses that transport children, cross state lines, or carry wheelchairs or oxygen may pay slightly higher premiums than those that don’t.
Selecting a bus policy requires carefully considering coverage needs and then, comparing different policies that offer those coverages. The best policy is usually only identified after several policies from multiple insurers have been compared.
For help with this process, contact the bus insurance specialists at Haberman Insurance Group. Our independent agents are familiar with the nuances of these policies, and they’d be happy to help you compare quotes from several insurers to find the best available policy.