A long time ago I remember reading a story in grade school that took place in Saskatchewan, Canada. The setting in the story was described in detail and for some reason I almost felt as though I had visited the region. To the point, that whenever I noticed anything about Saskatchewan in the news, I paid close attention.
Sadly, yeaterday there was a horrific accident where 15 died when a truck, and a hockey team bus collided. You will likely find several articles about the catastrophic collision online, simply by inserting “Humboldt Hockey Bus Accident.”
Having spent several years advising businesses about risk management, one of the first things that came to mind, when I saw the photos on Twitter of the team players holding hands while they were lined up in their hospital beds, happened to be the potential lawsuits that would inevitably be filed after an incident like this. Who was at fault? The driver of the bus, the driver of the truck, was it nobody’s fault?
When an accident like this happens, many of us are saddened and struck by the reality that life as we know it can be aborted in an instant. We are reminded about our own vulnerability and might even hug our loved ones, or text/call them if they are not within our arms’ length. How many of us think to check our insurance policy limits?
If you are a businessowner, you might not think that your automobile liability is one of your biggest exposures, but it very well could be. Do you have trucks on your schedule of vehicles? Even private passenger type vehicles can be driven and cause a bus to swerve off a road, and that bus may very well be carrying a load of passengers. The time to check to see that you are adequately insured is not after a tragedy but now, before something happens. Hopefully nothing ever does, but keep in mind that insurance is not something that you buy hoping that you use it. It’s something you purchase, hoping you never need to.
Note, too that if you have an excess liability policy over your business automobile policy, you should be sure to ask your agent or broker for a detailed explanation for the additional exclusions that might apply, and whenever possible have them removed. For example, some excess liability policies exclude uninsured or underinsured mototrist liability. Be sure you know what your policy provides.
My heart is with the players and all those impacted by this horrible tragedy.