Interstate Truck Insurance

Interstate truck insurance is a type of coverage for trucks that travel between two or more states. Interstate truck insurance differs from intrastate truck insurance in that intrastate travel is contained within a single state. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) oversees regulations for interstate truck insurance and other requirements. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) also regulates interstate truck laws. Carriers must establish proof of financial responsibility through the purchase of liability insurance or a surety bond.

Interstate Truck Insurance Coverage Types

Interstate truck insurance typically covers a number of aspects of trucking and cargo transportation. Coverage may include, but is not limited to, primary liability, physical damage, and cargo. Interstate truck insurance typically involves drivers, trucks, trucking companies, and other parties and vehicles involved in accidents and other incidences which require insurance coverage.

Primary Liability Coverage

Primary liability coverage in interstate truck insurance is intended to provide coverage for property damage and bodily injury during trucking accidents. The home office of the carrier’s insurance company is required to send coverage evidence to federal and state agencies. Often, states model intrastate truck insurance requirements after federal insurance requirements.

Physical Damage Coverage

Physical damage coverage is not federally mandated. However, many lenders require this type of coverage during the purchase of a commercial truck. Physical damage coverage may involve fire, theft, explosions, flood, and collision coverage.

Cargo Coverage

When applying for common carrier authority through the FMCA, truckers are required to obtain cargo coverage. Cargo coverage involves the goods being transported for the client. Laws require that cargo coverage is at least $5,000 for each vehicle, and $10,000 for each occurrence. Drivers and trucking companied should consult each shipper, as the shipper may require additional coverage.

Interstate Truck Insurance Laws

Interstate carriers for trucks that weigh less than 10,000 pounds are required to have at least $300,000 in interstate truck liability insurance. For trucks that weigh more than 10,001 pounds, at least $750,000 in interstate truck liability insurance is required. This applied to carries that do not transport hazardous materials. When transporting hazardous materials, interstate truck insurance laws differ.

Hazardous Materials Insurance Liability

When carrying hazardous materials, carriers are required to have $5 million of liability insurance. Hazardous materials include explosives, radioactive materials, gases that exceed 3,500 water gallons, and any materials poisonous by inhalation. Private or for-hire trucks weighing 10,001 or more pounds must have $1 million in insurance liability. This applies when transporting the aforementioned hazardous materials, as well as oil and other federally-defined hazardous materials.


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