Haulage Insurance Explained

Insurance can be a confusing area for anyone who doesn’t deal with it regularly and haulage insurance possibly more so. What it covers and, just as importantly, what it doesn’t cover is something that every haulage business owner needs to know. So here we look at the basics of cover and the extras you may need to take.

What Is Haulage Insurance?

There are two main types of business vehicle insurance – carriage of own goods and haulage. The difference is relatively simple – if you just carry your own stock in the vehicle along with equipment and materials for a project you are working on, then this is classed as carriage of own goods. If you transport someone else’s goods or materials for a payment, then this is haulage.

Once you know that you need haulage insurance, the choices for cover are the same as for other types of insurance – comprehensive, third party fire and theft and third party only. Their names tell the story:

Comprehensive covers damage you cause to your vehicle as well as to other vehicles and third party property such as lamp posts or fencing.

Third party fire and theft covers the vehicle for any damage due to theft, vandalism and fire as well as damage caused to a third party vehicle or property.

Third party only is the legal minimum and covers any damage to third party vehicles or property but nothing for your own vehicle.

Generally, you can take a policy for each vehicle you own but if you have three or more vehicles, you may be better with a fleet policy. This is a specialist type of haulage insurance and can save around 25% on the cost of three individual policies as well as making it easier to administer – only one renewal date, for example.

Haulage Insurance Extras

While the exact details of what a policy covers does vary between insurers, there are some elements that aren’t covered and that the business may need to take a separate policy to cover them for.

Goods in Transit is one popular extension for haulage insurance. This covers the goods carried in the vehicle against theft, loss damage and also the consequences of delay. It does need to specify if hazardous goods are carried or dangerous sites visited but most insurers will offer some form of this policy if they cover haulage insurance.

Public liability insurance is separate to vehicle insurance entirely and is something most businesses will have regardless. This should also cover if your vehicle causes any injury to a member of the public or another driver so if they sue you, the policy would cover the costs.

Continental lorry insurance is something that might be an optional extra or a separate policy depending on the insurer. It is only required if you take your vehicle to the continent as part of your routes to ensure you have the extra cover to protect you while abroad. If you just use the vehicles in the UK, you won’t need to consider this.