Working with limousine companies is an excellent way to expand for insurance producers who want to write more business. Limos are popular for special events and celebrations, but they also come with a lot of risk, necessitating limousine insurance. While passengers are excited to have fun, drivers are responsible for safety. And companies must be prepared for the potential for things to go wrong.
Check out these limousine safety tips to better understand how your clients can offer excellent service while staying safe and protected from liability.
1. Understand the Risks
First, limousine companies need to understand the risks of their work. Driving is an everyday occurrence, even in a specialty vehicle like a limousine. It’s easy to think of it as a low-risk activity, but driving any vehicle comes with inherent risk, no matter how safe the driver is. Nobody can control other drivers on the road or weather conditions. Both can lead to accidents, injury, and even death. Liability can skyrocket when adding in the specific risks of limos, including passengers not secured in their seats and other concerns like poorly maintained vehicles.
Limousines, especially stretch limousines, can be riskier than a standard vehicle. When stretch limousines are created, the pillars that make up a typical structural cage may be reconfigured. This leaves the passenger area unprotected. Side-impact crashes can have tragic results.
There are numerous cases of death and injury. Twenty people died in one tragic limousine crash in Schoharie. The vehicle had mechanical problems, noted by the driver and passengers, and noted by the Department of Transportation, which had ordered the vehicle off the road. Lawsuits stemming from this incident involved the limousine owners, the estate of the driver, state agencies, and companies involved with repair work on the limo.
2. Carry Safety Gear
One of the most basic safety tips for limousine drivers is to carry safety gear! This will help in minor situations and incidents. Drivers should have a first-aid kit, tire change tools, jumper cables, and flares, at the very least.
Limousine companies should have a system to handle large and small incidents and prepare drivers for these situations. When you partner with Prime Insurance Company, our risk management team will help your clients reduce risk and they can help them mitigate unwanted outcomes.
3. Properly Train Drivers
Limousine companies need to ensure that their drivers are properly trained and certified. Drivers also need to maintain a code of good practices that all drivers should be following on the road. Good practices should include avoiding needless distractions, being aware of other drivers, and abiding by traffic laws.
When training their drivers, it would be wise for companies to be well-versed in Department of Transportation rules and regulations and ensure compliance. Drivers need to follow driving time limits and be able to present logs or records of their duty status, for example. A limousine is only as safe as its driver. Training drivers to excellent standards is a critical aspect of security and wellbeing.
4. Inspect and Maintain the Fleet
A limousine company is responsible for maintaining and inspecting every vehicle before putting it into use. This should happen with every limousine rental, as there can be damage or wear and tear to a vehicle between rides. The time between rides presents an excellent opportunity to ensure that safety gear is in place.
Limousine companies would do well to maintain a log of inspection and maintenance. These records are valuable in the event of an incident or accident. Remember that maintenance is not just a reactive measure. Companies can avoid repairs and potential danger by performing proactive maintenance. Preventative maintenance goes a long way in keeping vehicles running well in all driving conditions.
Be aware that consumers also have the right to inspect the vehicle before use. They may inquire about the vehicle’s condition and any of its parts or check to see what safety gear is in place. They can ask the driver what tools they have in place and test various vehicle parts, including windows, sunroof, and lights.
5. Educate Passengers on Safety Rules and Tips
Passengers typically rent limousines to bring extra fun to a trip, but that doesn’t mean that they can ignore safety. As noted earlier, while limousines are bigger than the average vehicle, they do not benefit from extra protection. Have a safety policy in place and make it available to all passengers.
For example, passengers should be wearing their seatbelts while the vehicle is in motion. Drivers should be telling passengers where those belts are located and why they should wear them. Companies should clearly display the passenger capacity based on safety and weight restrictions and insist that drivers and passengers comply with the rules.
6. Invest in Limousine Insurance
Our biggest and perhaps best safety tip for limousine companies is to invest in limousine insurance. Your clients need customized liability insurance to protect their businesses and livelihoods if something happens on the road or otherwise. No matter how many safety tips and precautions companies follow, there is always the risk of an accident or other problem. Only insurance can protect against the fallout.
Partnering with Prime Insurance Company gives your policyholders protection and peace of mind. It allows you to write more business by offering liability insurance. We’re an excess and surplus lines insurance company, rated A by A.M. Best, which means we know exactly how to insure your clients best. Our in-house teams are here to help you and your clients with everything from risk management to handling claims.
We work hard to reduce risk and prevent needless claims, but we are just as prepared to efficiently and effectively handle the claims process. Through it all, we keep in close contact with insurance producers and their clients. For more information or to talk to our team, call us at 800.257.5590 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.