Earthquake Insurance - Did you know?
With the recent earthquakes that have rolled out of the Irving area, much attention has been brought to the possible need for earthquake insurance.
A standard homeowner's insurance policy does not cover damage caused by an earthquake. Some insurance companies will attach an earthquake coverage rider or endorsement to a homeowner’s policy. Due to the low risk in Texas, the premiums may not cost much, possibly as low as $100 a year for a $200,000 home.
Paschall Insurance Group offers earthquake insurance through several of our insurance carriers. If you are interested in learning more about earthquake insurance or any other insurance coverage, please give our office a call and let one of our friendly team members assist you (817-341-4400).
Your Teenage Driver - Speed Kills
We’ve all heard the mantra a thousand times: “Speed kills!”
As parents of teenage drivers we know it’s true. Chances are good that your teen driver has heard the phrase a time or two as well. The problem is that your teen may not really believe it’s true—especially when it comes to his or her driving. The Allstate Foundation reported that some 55 percent of teens they surveyed said that they at least occasionally exceed the posted speed limits by more than 10 miles per hour.
The scary thing about this is that according to National Safety Council statistics, for every 10 MPH over 55, the chances of being killed in a crash DOUBLES! What’s scarier still, 40 percent of the surveyed teens claim that they plan to continue exceeding the posted limits in the future.
It’s not just driving too fast that’s the problem, however. A lot of teenage drivers falsely believe they are safe drivers. According to the Allstate survey, close to half of them claimed to be “defensive” drivers. They saw themselves as “safe” drivers. But they also claimed that more than 60 percent of their peers were “aggressive” drivers. This shows a complete “disconnect” between perception and reality.
Unfortunately, there is some misconception among teens as to what makes a driver a “safe” driver. More than 50 percent of teenage drivers surveyed were under the impression that most teenage car crashes came about as a result of drinking and driving. The fact is that fewer than 25 percent of those crashes involve alcohol. Of course that’s still far too many, but it means that 75 percent of teen crashes are due to other driving mistakes.
Teen drivers are involved in over 800,000 crashes per year, resulting in 3,000 lost lives (www.rita.dot.gov). Make sure your teen driver is aware of these statistics. Driving is 90% mental, as proven by the fact that 9 out of 10 car crashes are caused by mental error (www.nhtsa.gov) with the main culprits being speeding, tailgating and an overall lack of focus while driving.
Top 10 Stolen Cars of 2013
Honda Accord and Civic top the list of the most stolen cars in the country.
The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB)’s annual “Hot Wheels” report examines vehicle theft data submitted by law enforcement to the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) and determines the vehicle make, model and model year most reported stolen in 2013.
Overall, car thefts are down to their lowest point since 1967 and down 50 percent since 1991.
For 2013, the most stolen vehicles in the nation (with the total reported stolen) were:
- Honda Accord (53,995)
- Honda Civic (45,001)
- Chevrolet Pickup (Full Size) (27,809)
- Ford Pickup (Full Size) (26,494)
- Toyota Camry (14,420)
- Dodge Pickup (Full Size) (11,347)
- Dodge Caravan (10,911)
- Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee (9,272)
- Toyota Corolla (9,010)
- Nissan Altima (8,892)
The NICB also released a list of the top 25 most stolen 2013 vehicle makes and models in calendar year 2013:
- Nissan Altima (810)
- Ford Fusion (793)
- Ford Pickup Full Size (775)
- Toyota Corolla (669)
- Chevrolet Impala (654)
- Hyundai Elantra (541)
- Dodge Charger (536)
- Chevrolet Malibu (529)
- Chevrolet Cruze (499)
- Ford Focus (483)
After a slight increase in 2012, the FBI predicts a reduction in national vehicle thefts of 3.2 percent when final 2013 statistics are released later this year. The peak year for vehicle thefts was 1991 with 1,661,738. If the FBI’s preliminary 2013 vehicle theft estimate holds, thefts will be under 700,000—a number not seen since 1967 and a reduction in vehicle thefts of over 50 percent since 1991.
“The drop in thefts is good news for all of us,” said NICB President and CEO Joe Wehrle. “But it still amounts to a vehicle being stolen every 45 seconds and losses of over $4 billion a year. That’s why we applaud the vehicle manufacturers for their efforts to improve anti-theft technology and pledge to continue to work with our insurance company members and law enforcement to identify and seek vigorous prosecution of the organized criminal rings responsible for so many of these thefts.”
New NHTSA Crash Study Released
The U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a new study that underscores the high economic toll and societal impact of motor vehicle crashes in the United States. The price tag for crashes comes at a heavy burden for Americans at $871 billion in economic loss and societal harm. This includes $277 billion in economic costs – nearly $900 for each person living in the United States based on calendar year 2010 data — and $594 billion in harm from the loss of life and the pain and decreased quality of life due to injuries.
Behavioral factors contributing to the huge price-tag of roadway crashes based on the 32,999 fatalities, 3.9 million non-fatal injuries and 24 million damaged vehicles include:
- Drunk Driving: Crashes caused by drivers under the influence of alcohol accounted for 18 percent of the total economic loss due to motor vehicle crashes and cost the nation $49 billion.
- Speeding: Crashes involving a speeding vehicle traveling over the posted speed limit or too fast for conditions accounted for 21 percent of the total economic loss and cost the nation $59 billion.
- Distraction: Crashes involving a distracted driver accounted for 17 percent of the total economic loss and cost the nation $46 billion.
- Pedestrians and Bicyclists: Crashes involving pedestrians and bicyclists accounted for 7 percent of the total economic loss and cost the nation $19 billion.
The economic cost of motor vehicle crashes in the U.S. is the equivalent of 1.9 percent of the $14.96 trillion Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2010. Factors contributing to the price tag include productivity losses, property damage, medical and rehabilitation costs, congestion costs, legal and court costs, emergency services, insurance administration costs, and the costs to employers, among others. Overall, nearly 75 percent of these costs are paid through taxes, insurance premiums, and congestion related costs such as travel delay, excess fuel consumption, and increased environmental impacts. These costs, borne by society rather than individual crash victims, totaled over $200 billion.
Truths About Credit Scores and Car Insurance Rates
Good, bad or nonexistent, a customer's credit score still matters when shopping for car insurance. The impact doesn't always remain equal across geographies or insurers. That's the general finding of a new report from personal finance site WalletHub, which set out to make sense of the whole issue in its 2014 Credit Score vs. Car Insurance study. The goal was to determine how transparent insurers are being about their use of credit score information, how big of a role the data plays in underwriting decisions and how scores are impacting policy premiums on a state-by state basis. Click here to read the findings from WalletHub's study.