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Questions on liability

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by WW LawnCare, Sep 22, 2004.

  1. WW LawnCare

    WW LawnCare Junior Member
    Messages: 5

    I am currently going to buy a snow plow for this winter and was wondering if anyone has a liability form or something like that in case you hit or run over something hidden in the snow? Thank you Jerod
     
  2. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    It's called Commercial Vehicle insurance and General Liability insurance. You get them from your local insurance agent. Seriously, there is nothing that will absolve you of liability for your actions.
     
  3. ZamboniHDB

    ZamboniHDB Senior Member
    Messages: 335

    You might state that you aren't liable in your contract several times for various actions, but good luck on that sticking when the lawyers get their hands on it! Also, you can't hold your customers responsible for damage to your equipment while engaged in snow plowing operations. Just like Mick said, commercial vehicle and general liability insurance is the best personal protection one could have.

    Just my .02¢
    Rick
     
  4. WW LawnCare

    WW LawnCare Junior Member
    Messages: 5

    I have that, I just did not know if there was anything I could do to take a little extra precaution. Like I said, I am new to this a would like a little information
     
  5. pbeering

    pbeering Senior Member
    Messages: 266

    Put is some "fine print" on the bottom of your bid sheet and contract docs to try to limit your liability. then plan to fix what you tear up in the spring. It's worth every penny of the dirt/seed/time in saved accounts and good will.
     
  6. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    When I read through my reply, I could see how it might seem I was being a "wise a--"). What I said before is the best protection for big stuff like damaged cars, etc. What you should do before it snows, is put markers at the edge of driveways, at any obstruction or anything you might damage. These markers come in various lengths - I use 48" ones. Probably the biggest concern I have around here are well heads. These are about 18" high above a well and can be disastrous if hit with a plow. I also put a marker on road edges where there are particularly hazardous drop offs and edges of the driveway. Don't forget to mark things like telephone pole guy wires.

    Starting out, you are probably going to have a lot of places you plow "on call"; that is people who wait till they're snowed in to call a plow guy. Now, the biggest problem is that you have no idea what is under that snow. I even got caught last spring when an account had new gravel brought into a road without telling me. It snowed late in the season, so I went and plowed. Sank the right side of the truck to the axles. Tore up his new section of road. Like I told him, I'd just been down there plowing two weeks earlier with no problem. I had no idea he'd done that as I couldn't see under the snow. My advise in a situation like that is to explain to them that you can't tell where anything is and have them right there while you're plowing to keep you off the grass or anything else.

    Good luck.
     
  7. Mowey9

    Mowey9 Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 93

    I was wondering if anyone could help me on this. I was a subcontractor last year so I have my commercial insurance on my truck but there was never anything said to me about the general liability insurance. Is this something that I will need if I try and go on my won this year. Commercial vehicle insurance and/or general liability insurance? Thanks in advance for any incite on this topic.
    Mowey
     
  8. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Yes. Commercial Vehicle covers operations while you are in the act of plowing (ie: scraping a car or running into a garage). General Liability covers you after you depart the premises (ie: slip and fall injury).
     
  9. ZamboniHDB

    ZamboniHDB Senior Member
    Messages: 335

    Mowey9 -

    When you were subcontracting, you were covered under your employers general liability policy which you do not need in that situation. However, just like Mick said, you still needed the commercial vehicle insurance. If you were to go on your own this year, it is best to have both general liability and commercial vehicle insurance to cover you from any accidents or potential lawsuits.

    Just my .02¢
    Rick
     
  10. Mowey9

    Mowey9 Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 93

    Thanks for the help so far guys. The problem that I have is I'm not real sure what type of a company you would contact to get the general liability insurance or how much to get. Another question: How much property liability is good for my commercial insurance? Any other information that you might have on insurance, such as basic knowledge that might be useful.
    Mowey
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2004
  11. snoluvr

    snoluvr Senior Member
    from RI
    Messages: 266

    insurance

    you are best to get a landscape insurance policy that includes plowing with it. Straight plowing insurance can get high, but added to a landscape plan is a lot more economical. I currently use National Grange from my local agent and have 1 mil. per occurance with a cap of 2 mil. on the policy..covers hopefully anything that could happen.Most commercial customers require this as a minimum.
     
  12. Mowey9

    Mowey9 Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 93

    Ok so the 1mil is the general insurance right. How about your vehicle insurance? With a ball park number could you tell me the price of the general insurance and must you carry it all year round? Thanks for your time Snoluvr.
    Mowey
     
  13. snoluvr

    snoluvr Senior Member
    from RI
    Messages: 266

    I have my truck registered commercial and pay normal comm. vehicle insurance.
    My commercial policy covers up to 1 mill. claim for any damage to property that may happen, and has a 2 mil. cap..basically after 2 claims you r out of luck..better not have claims like that or I should change jobs..I now pay about 550 for the year for the insurance..well worth it.My buddy slid into a garage door without it, and it cost him almost $2,000 to have it fixed..With insurance you make a claim and it is taken care of.