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PSV blow

Operators raise alarm over new Massy policy

Insurance companies are being asked not to adopt a ‘Peter pay for Paul’ policy when it comes to insuring public service vehicles (PSVs).

That cry has come from chairman of the Alliance for Owners of Public Transport Inc Roy Raphael, in the wake of Massy United Insurance’s recent decision not to renew the insurance of several PSVs.

He said while operators would exhaust all efforts to seek a meeting with officials from the insurance company to find a resolution, they were willing to go the route of the  Supervisor of Insurance if they had to.

An outspoken Raphael told Barbados TODAY while he understood some PSV operators were causing headaches for insurance companies, he did not believe it was fair to punish every owner for the actions of few.

Instead, he said it would be more appropriate for insurance companies to penalize the offending operators and owners.

“The insurance companies in Barbados need to deal with individual persons and owners, rather than classifying everybody as high risk.

“As a PSV owner, this is our livelihood and we can’t make a living if we can’t get insurance for our PSVs. If we can’t get our vehicles insured it means that we have to take them off the road and we can’t make any money,” Raphael lamented.

He revealed that Massy United Insurance had notified some owners that their insurance would not be renewed.

Raphael said this was especially worrying because other insurance companies might eventually follow suit.

“Right now we have about five insurance companies who insure PSVs in Barbados and I am afraid that some of them may opt to come out of the portfolio,” he explained.

“That would mean that a number of our buses might have to park due to the fact that we won’t have any insurance.”

Raphael said while he was hopeful that a speedy solution could be reached, the operators were not afraid to take their case higher.

“I am not ruling out the possibility that we may want to approach the Supervisor of Insurance. We will be exploring all of our options,” he stated.

However, the Director of Business Development and Marketing at Massy United Insurance Micky Armstrong told Barbados TODAY the decision had been made based on the high number of claims in recent years with respect to PSVs.

He said they had taken a stance to only insure PSVs which were owner driven.

“The board took a decision not to insure PSVs which were not driven by owners, so that means a number of them don’t qualify for further insurance with Massy United Insurance,” Armstrong explained.

“It is a position which we did not take lightly and it was only taken after a deep analysis of the situation with regards to the high claims of insurance with respect to PSVs over the course of the years.

“I can understand some owners may own multiple PSVs and they would not be able to drive them all at once, but that is the stance which the board has taken and that has not changed,” he added.

Armstrong said however he was not against meeting with Raphael and would be willing to do so once contacted.

Raphael has suggested that in the same way the Transport Board has one insurance company writing its fleet, the same should be done for PSVs, whose annual insurance costs range between $5 000 to $18 000 for ZRs and $11 000 to $26 000 for minibuses.

The chairman readily admitted that the image of PSVs had been “dragged through the dirt” in the past, while suggesting that image had improved in recent times.

“Recently we have seen a steady improvement in the way PSVs operate . . . right now they aren’t like before.

“We have seen an improvement . . . we have seen improvements in persons wearing uniform, we have seen improvements in their behaviour and we have seen improvements in how they operate on the road.

“My suggestion to the insurance companies is for us to sit down and talk. We are very approachable,” Raphael insisted.

8 Responses to PSV blow

  1. jrsmith November 19, 2015 at 8:49 am

    I was wondering for some time , how long ,the insurance companies would take before , they run themselves into the ground by, the bad bajan attitude drivers. next stop the private vehicles, well the so and so ,has hit the fan chickens come home to roost. every body will start crying now, knew this day would come. AMEN.

    The Insurance companies could , try for a short period , both ,private and PSV( high added Access ) or (deductibles) of $2500 to $3000 , on the policies, if the insuree, suffered an accident ,was his or her fault, they pay the first of the claims against them. to the starting limits.

  2. Watchman November 19, 2015 at 9:13 am

    Look men, get wunna own insurance company and done. Then nobody can unfair wunna anymore. Insurance is de only product in this world that one is expected to pay for but be penalised for using.

  3. Angela Fergusson November 19, 2015 at 10:31 am

    This is a step in a good direction by the Insurers, which now forces users of the shared roads in Barbados to be more responsible, more considerate, and most of all be more caring and safe. The vast majority of responsible road users can start to feel a bit better now that an effective line of line of action is taking place.

  4. BOBO THE SAME CLOWN November 19, 2015 at 10:43 am

    What should PSV owners expect? They allow drivers who should never ever be allowed to drive a nail to drive these vehicles without a care for passengers, pedestrians,or other drivers, and of course the driver don’t worry about paying the Insurance if an accident occurs so they mistreat the vehicle as well.
    It should have registered in some way to the owners who hire some of these idiots that the short term gain would eventually lead to long term pain.
    I think there are two many of these vehicles on the road in the first place, and therefore Insurance Companies that are constantly paying out benefits because of careless and often avoidable accidents should refuse to sell Insurance to such offenders .

  5. jrsmith November 19, 2015 at 11:30 am

    @ ,Watchman, hail,hail, where do you live , are you on this planet. get they own insurance, like setting up a rum,

  6. Sue Donym November 19, 2015 at 11:51 am

    Why aren’t the insurance companies, police and MTW targeting actual offenders? This policy can mean that a good pool of drivers is excluded simply on the basis of not owning the vehicle. What if it were a cleaning company or a construction company? It doesn’t make sense unless there is a poor claims history with the particular company/drivers. This insurance company is effectively forcing a move away from company owned fleets, while the Transport Ministry has stated their desire to deal with a representative entity. Isn’t it harder this way or is this more divide and rule? It’s confusing!

    I am all for improvements in many areas of this sector, but what is needed is enforcement of existing regulations, not irrelevant, ineffective tactics that will remove badly needed seats from the system.

    Are we seeing the deconstruction of the industry?

    I have heard people speculate about the motives of this conglomerate when it comes to other sectors, and I wonder if those people have similar concerns with this move against the transport sector.

    I still say that the solution is to devise and implement a wide ranging national transportation policy and to enforce compliance, along with appropriate reviews, penalties and adjustments to take the nation forward.

  7. Alex Alleyne November 19, 2015 at 3:37 pm

    Just think back, ICBL start doing the same thing sometime back , now I hear them running an ad on the radio “begging” people to come back at a discount rate.
    This is about the insurance companies in BIM , nothing to do with PSV.

  8. Tony Waterman November 21, 2015 at 6:23 am

    I am actually amazed at how “Two Faced” some of you people are, you complain about the PSV’s but now that the Collisions and Claims are too much for the Insurance Companies, and the set out to do something about it, everyone is now Anti Insurance Company.
    as far as i am concerned, they are on the right Track, the only way to stop the recklessness that is associated with these Hoodlums, is to hit them in the Pocket, the insurance Company is a Business and is there to make a PROFIT (Bad Word) if these fools had no Claims, everyone would be winners, but they are too STUPID to see that, so yes Insurers, smarten them up.
    this year when i was on my regular stay, i saw these guys (Many) reverse pass my house at HIGH SPEED from 300 odd yards away to cut off the other guy from picking up passengers,the stop in the Middle of the road to pick up Passengers so that the guy behind them can’t pass to get in front of them, thereby blocking both sides of the Road way, they stab and shoot one another in that stand downtown.
    Good on you Massy, and that is considering that i don’t like much that is Trini.


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