Now you can insure against losing your licence
January 13, 2008, 4:33 am
Filed under: bicycle commute, commute, cycling | Tags: , , , , , , , ,
Gillian Cook
January 10, 2008 – 11:16AM
We insure our household contents, our cars and our precious belongings, now there’s a policy to cover the consequences of losing a driver’s licence.
The Loss of Licence Assistance policy was developed by the National Underwriting Agency for Australia.

It is designed to provide up to $1000 to cover transport related costs a month for three months to drivers with suspended licences.

Similar policies have proved popular in Britain.

However, Geoff Corrigan, chairman of the NSW Staysafe committee, is worried it might encourage careless driving.

“Though I can see some benefits, the insurance company has to take care that it doesn’t encourage people to take risks,” he said.

“In 2007, NSW had the lowest accidents and deaths on the road for 20 years.

“The message has started to get through to people and I hate to think that people would take out this policy and think they can drive with impunity.

“If people think that they can drive unsafely because they pay a premium to have their transport costs covered, I wonder if they will be afraid of the repercussions.”

Despite the fact that the policy eases the financial burden of a licence suspension, Noel Johns a representative for National Underwriting Agency, believes that drivers are still getting punished for their offences.

“People will still need to ring up a taxi every morning or get other transport so they are still being inconvenienced by their loss of licence,” he said.

Mr Johns said there was a market for such a policy in Australia.

“The policy is being introduced because of a proliferation of speed cameras that catch the normal everyday motorists who usually do not speed and who were caught just over the limit and find themselves accumulating points and receiving infringement notices,” he said.

The policy applies to speeding offences that are worth three demerit points or less, so offences such as drink driving and driving while on a mobile phone would not be covered.



2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Here in the US there is now a (heavily advertised) new incentive to sign on with a certain insurance agency which offers “accident forgiveness”– during the commercial you see a montage of “whoopsies” moments: basic rear-enders, opening doors in the path of oncoming, ahem, cars, running over fire hydrants, banging another car in a neighbouring parking space, etc. As a bicycle commuter, I just cannot believe it– not only does it irritate me to no end that these intentional acts of carelessness are called “accidents” (contrary to our highway administration which now acknowledges all collisions involving motor vehicles are the result of human error rather than divine intervention, and so now calls them “crashes” in all cases), but it’s infuriating to think this company is encouraging drivers to have the mentality that “oopsie daisies” is a reasonable response to, say, dooring a cyclist, and the only thing that matters in such a scenario is preventing a rise in their insurance rate. Oh, and they can be forgiven five times.

The idea of “innocent offenses” such as the example given in the article above of going just a little over the speed limit– regularly– and that drivers are victims of the laws designed to keep them from killing people is just getting more and more absurd.

Comment by gunsofbrixton

I find the ‘accident forgiveness’ a pretty obnoxious marketing ploy, too… it’s insurance to the second power. I mean, isn’t ‘accident forgiveness’ what insurance is?
I’m thinking it must be working; why else would they have then added the “send you a check if you drive well.” As in, we’ll charge everybody more, have mroe of your cash on hand, and then give some of it back at the end of the year. Why not just charge me less to begin with?

Comment by Siouxgeonz

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: