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want to get a truck w/plow for my property only

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by ellinas83, Aug 26, 2015.

  1. ellinas83

    ellinas83 Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    hello. I own 2 restaurants right next to each other located in western new york and to plow my parking lot every winter costs me about $6,000(contract) . I was thinking of getting my own truck with a plow and doing it my self. IF I want to plow only my commercial property what permits, vehicle insurance do i need to obtain? Is it worth the investment and my time to do this. Any advice would be appreciated
  2. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,993

    IMO stick with a pro but if you want to do it, you will need a truck, plow, some type of material spreader, a supply of ice melt. You then need to talk to your insurance agent about insuring yourself against the liability and obtain commercial insurance on the truck.

    Remember you will be on your own in any slip and fall situation, if they sue the buck stops with you (and your insurance.)

    Do you have any experience plowing snow? If not I suggest you start studying, it is a little different then cutting grass, failure to take the proper actions at the proper time could leave you with a parking lot that is a law suit waiting to happen.

    equipment is key, if you buy a beater rig just to plow be sure you have a back up on call because snow will not wait for you to repair a vehicle failure. Same with the plow. You could spend two years plow budget (at 6K annually) just purchasing a acceptable condition plow rig before you ever consider insurance, repairs, materials, etc.
  3. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    who is going to plow the restaurants when it's snowing all day and into the next?
    Then salt, do you have a place to score bulk salt or are you thinking of using bags?
    then a spreader for the salt.

    Do you have a summer use for said truck?
    Do you have a back up plan for when your truck or plow breaks down?
    Can you fix it or are you dependent on a shop fixing it,
    (wich could take days) (and it's snowing)

    it's probably cheaper and easier to hire a service.

    but it would be nice to get a new 60k truck and a 8k plow with a 6k spreader.
    maybe the dishwasher could take a break and plow the lot?
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2015
  4. Dogplow Dodge

    Dogplow Dodge PlowSite Veteran
    from NJ
    Messages: 3,699

    Doesn't western NY get HUGE amounts of snow each year ?

    What do you guys do when you can't place the snow anymore ?
  5. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    ^ melt in the deep fryer?
  6. ellinas83

    ellinas83 Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    thank you for the information i really appreciate it. I have no experience at all. It looks like a good long term investment. Where would be a good place/site that will help guide me step by step. also is the driver required to get a special licence? whats the estimate price to start up this up?

    also to answer your questions. I will have my son plow. I have enough room to store all the salt i need. i would buy another truck for backup if the first truck broke down. thank you again for the info
  7. LapeerLandscape

    LapeerLandscape 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,248

    I am not sure about your local laws there but here you don't need any special license to plow snow on your own property. As for insurance you should already have liability insurance on your business so you will just need your regular truck insurance. I would look for a good used truck with a blade already on it and make sure it works. A small tailgate salt spreader should be all you need to do 2 small parking lots.
  8. Diesel Dan

    Diesel Dan Senior Member
    Messages: 219

    a used half ton with an 8' straight blade would do if you want to keep it cheap.

    You should already have liability insurance for you business, so no worries there.
  9. Dogplow Dodge

    Dogplow Dodge PlowSite Veteran
    from NJ
    Messages: 3,699

    Should confirm this with his insurance co. I guess as long as he only does his own property, and doesn't drive the plow on the road.
  10. 1olddogtwo

    1olddogtwo PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,174

    Role play time

    Assuming the truck is registered to OP personally,

    Does his liability insurance cover slip and fall on his lot?

    Does his Ins cover him driving down the road and he hits something or someone with plow attached?

    Assuming the truck is registered to the work

    Will his Ins allow the additional risk without increase in Premium?

    Will his Ins extend coverage he hit someone or something with plow attached?

    Either scenario and does damage to properties?

    Is the son listed as employee?
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2015
  11. Dogplow Dodge

    Dogplow Dodge PlowSite Veteran
    from NJ
    Messages: 3,699

    My ins policy , on the first couple pages, excludes all snow operations. Plowing, shoveling, blowing, kicking it with my feet, or deicing. Since every state and ins co has different regs, he needs to review his policy.

    You can't assume his business policy covers anything unrelated or related to his business without reviewing the policy first, and then confirm it with his agent
  12. Randall Ave

    Randall Ave PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,600

    If this was done correctly in the past. He had a insurance certificate from his contractor. Now he is assuming all liability on his own. He needs to at least contact his agent and clarify his coverage. At least we in New Jersey, the sue happy state would do this.
  13. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,993

    he will always get sued in a slip and fall, they have to go though him to get to contractor. However in the past he would just pass the liability down the line to the contractor who would be in the position of proving he had successfully fulfilled the contract. The most it would ever cost his insurance would be getting a judge to dismiss him since the contractor assumed the liability with the contract.

    The only one who can really answer that question would be his insurance agent.