by Ed S, Illinois commercial auto insurance specialist in Chicago

Snow plowing vehicles insurance

The subject of insuring autos used in connection with removing snow is not uncommon in Chicago where snow removal requires constant and dedicated services during the winter season. The scope of operation of the snow removal services will determine the nature of insurance coverage required.  For example, large contractors that work with municipal and airport authorities need significantly different insurance than that which Joe The Plower needs to remove the snow from his neighboring store parking lot.

Using personal vehicles to remove snow is not unusual. Despite the fact that many companies exclude accidents resulting from snow plowing, those that do not clearly exclude it will make sure that any commercial use of the vehicle (including using your persona vehicle to plow the snow at your neighbor home for a fee), will not be covered under your personal auto policy.

For your personal auto policy to cover snow plowing, it must be explicitly  endorsed for that purpose. Using a vehicle that is insured with a personal auto policy to commercially plow snow is unwise. Any damage that is caused by a snow plowing vehicle will not be paid if the insurance coverage on that vehicle is personal. If you use your own personal auto to plow the driveways of your own properties then you may not need any special insurance. Remember, however, that destroying your own property with your own vehicle may not be covered under your own auto policy.

Liability Insurance for Snow Plowing Trucks

For individuals who run their one man snow plowing service, a commercial policy is necessary. The amount of coverage vary, but cannot be less than what the State of Illinois require for auto insurance. The State of Illinois require that you have a minimum of $20,000 bodily injury per person, $40,000 bodily injury per accident and $15,000 property damage per accident. Also, similar limits of $20,000 bodily injury per person, $40,000 bodily injury per accident are required for Uninsured Motorists coverage.

Physical Damage Insurance for Snow Plowing Vehicles

Snow plowing services may also find it important to get comprehensive and collision coverage for the snow plowing vehicles. Certain snow plowing trucks that have lienholders may be required to have physical damage coverage.

Commercial auto insurance Chicago IllinoisCost of Insurance for Snow Plowing Trucks

The cost to insure snow plowing equipment depends  on the garaging ZIP code of the business autos, limits of liability coverage requested, age and driving records of the designated drivers. Some insurers will also take in to account the credit history of the owner of the snow plowing service and if or not the business maintained continuous liability insurance or not. If full coverage is sought then the value of the snow plowing vehicles and coverage deductible will determine the premiums for the full coverage (comprehensive and collision.)

Snow Plowing Contractors Insurance

Snow plowing contractors plowing for larger businesses or strip malls may be required to carry higher liability limits on their snow plowing autos and trucks, perhaps $1 million each occurrence. Low liability limits may disqualify lots of snow plowing contractors from getting contracts with larger instructions & municipalities.

Besides insuring their snow plowing trucks, larger snow removal businesses may need to get insurance for their commercial general liability,  workers compensation insurance, property insurance for their offices, and any other contractors tools.
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