Dashcams

Dashcams and insurance questionsDashcams are becoming increasingly popular and more commonly used all types of drivers: from truckers and long-distance commuters to soccer moms.

What is a dashcam?

A dashcam is a video camera which costs $50 – $300. It’s mounted on the interior of a windshield and is hardwired into the car’s battery to turn on when the car is running. Some dashcams have the option of running while the car is off and parked. The dashcam records all travels and the digital files are easily reviewable.

Why do drivers invest in a dash cam?

Some feel an extra sense of security in the situation of an accident or emergency; they’ll have video evidence of what actually occurred, rather than relying on those involved or witnesses.

Other reasons for using a dashcam:

  • Record fraudulent “staged” accidents
  • Parents of young drivers can review driving habits
  • Record accidents or acts of theft or vandalism while parked (when enabled)
  • Document incidences of road rage
  • To have a record of road trips and to catch unexpected footage

While having a dash cam may provide a driver with peace of mind, they do not make you eligible for an insurance discount. Any dashcam footage obtained can be used to help the insurance claim process (ex: determining liability), but the claim still needs to go through the usual channels.

It’s also important to note that if dashcam footage is posted publicly on YouTube or other social media networks, there may be privacy implications.

Dashcams: What would you use it for?

Fatigued Driving is Impaired Driving

Impaired driving is any condition which affects your driving performance. Impaired driving is not only alcohol and drug related; it’s also physical and mental fatigue.

Our lives are demanding, and often one area we neglect is proper rest and sleep.

Driver fatigue is a factor in up to 21 percent of vehicular collisions, according to the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators. For Canadians, this translates into approximately 400 deaths and 2,100 serious injuries every year.

Fatigued drivers put themselves and others at risk: and it’s simply not worth the potential outcome.

Fatigued Driving

Infogrraphic: National Sleep Foundation

Talk to your young drivers, loved ones and friends about the dangers of drowsy driving.

Has Your Vehicle Been Recalled?

The importance of vehicle recallsWhether your vehicle is brand new or years old; no one likes to receive notices of recall about their cars.

Even if the recall doesn’t “seem” to affect your vehicle; getting the necessary updates done is essential. Recalls can not only affect the resale value of your vehicle, but also personal, passenger and general road safety.

Not sure if you’re vehicle’s been recalled? Check out this easy to use Motor Vehicle Safety Recalls Database.

Consider as well that if you purchased your car used, you may not have received the recall notice.

Be proactive about your vehicular maintenance. Taking care of all recalls will help provide you with peace of mind when your family is on the road.

Safety first!

Changes to Your Auto Insurance Policy

Changes to your Ontario car insurance policy Gibb Insurance BrokersAuto insurance in Ontario is changing.

What’s changing?

Depending on your insurance company, you may see:

  • Reduction in insurance premiums
  • Reduction in coverage
  • A change in your coverage and/or benefits
  • New options available in your coverage and/or benefits

Why is this change happening?

In an effort to comply with the promise to make auto insurance premiums more affordable, the Ontario government is lowering the mandatory medical coverage you have to carry on your auto insurance policy, and in return you may see a reduction in your rates.

What does this mean?

Most of the changes are related to accident benefits you would receive if you were injured in a collision: some benefit limits have been reduced, and some options for increased coverage have been changed or eliminated.

What else do I need to know?

While this change in coverage will affect all Ontario insurance policies, people without an employer sponsored insurance plan may want to pay special attention to these changes.

When will it affect me?

Although the new initiative began June 1st, the changes won’ t affect individual policy holders until the automobile insurance policy is due for renewal or if a new policy is purchased.

Your best bet is to speak directly with your insurance professional to fully understand the potential impact of these changes.

If you have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us: 519-736-8228

Easy Ways to Update Your Older Vehicle

Make your old car feel like new - Gibb Insurance AmherstburgSome of us prefer older vehicles because they are paid for, or perhaps sentimental. Whether you keep your older vehicle or upgrade to an older, but new-to-you version, here are some inexpensive ideas make your vehicle look and feel newer.

  1. Clean it

Treat your older vehicle to a professional cleaning inside and out. Also consider having the engine bay, parts and connections cleaned as well. This will not only remove harmful build up but will help your vehicle run better, for longer.

Cost: $30 – $300

  1. Clear it

Remove the oxidization from your old, hazy, plastic headlight covers. Not only will your vehicle’s appearance will improve, so will the effectiveness of your headlights.

Cost: $10 – $25

  1. Remove it

Dents, dings and scratches on your vehicle can make it appear even older than it is! Aside from paying big bucks to a body shop or for a new paint job, try an at home DIY dent removal kit and reduce the appearance of scratches with touch-up paint.

Cost $25+

  1. Communicate it

Hands-free communication in vehicles is not only safe; it’s the law. Upgrade your sound system to integrate with the Bluetooth capabilities of your mobile devices.

Cost: $40 – $200

  1. Find it

Most older vehicles don’t have navigation systems, and in Ontario, it’s illegal to hold your mobile device and drive. It’s easy to install a mount to your dashboard or centre console to help your GPS enabled device.

Cost: $15 – $50

  1. Start it

Let’s face it… winters can be pretty tough in Windsor and Essex County! No one enjoys driving a freezing cold car (plus even newer vehicles need a minute or two for the oil to warm up and lubricate the systems). Treat your older vehicle to a remote car starter for those frosty days.

Cost: $250 – $500

  1. Reverse it

If you feel insecure when driving in reverse, consider purchasing a rearview camera and a new accompanying rearview mirror which displays the camera’s images.

Cost: $350

Whether you choose to upgrade aspects of your older vehicle or not, the most important thing is that it’s performing safely and consistently. Enjoy your older vehicle and enjoy the ride!

New – Ride Share Insurance Coverage

Ride Share UberX Insurance Windsor OntarioRide sharing has overtaken the traditional taxi industry and is now available with UberX in the Windsor and Essex County area.

Due to the rise of ride sharing services, there has been a serious gap in protection and benefits for drivers carrying passengers in their own vehicles – until now.

In February, Aviva Canada will launch coverage for drivers involved in ride sharing services.

Ride Share Insurance – What you need to know:

  • The coverage is an addition to an Aviva personal auto policy.
  • Eligibility for coverage will be based on some simple underwriting criteria, such as a maximum of eight passengers, licensed for a minimum of six years, etc.
  • The coverage will protect ride-sharing drivers from the moment they initiate looking for passengers through to collecting and dropping off those passengers.
  • The coverage will be available for drivers who spend up to 20 hours a week participating in ride sharing.
  • The cost for the additional coverage will equate to a small portion of the income earned by the driver, calculated using factors such as time spent ride sharing, area driven and driving record.

This coverage is important for both the driver and their passengers. If you or someone you know is contracted by a ride sharing company, please contact us for a quote today: 519-736-8228

May the Force Be With You

The force is strong with Gibb Insurance Brokers Inc.

We not only offer you the coverage you need at a competitive price, but we pride ourselves on fast, courteous, personalized service.

Give us a call, 519-736-8228, or submit an online quote here. We’d be happy to help you save.

Gibb Insurance Amherstburg Ontario

 

And yes, we’re just as nerdy and passionate about insurance as we are about Star Wars, so you know you we’ll be here for you no matter what.

Good Idea or Bad Idea? Driver-less Cars

Autonomous cars - Considerations Gibb Insurance Amherstburg OntarioThe technology involved with driver-less cars is believed to be the greatest advancement in transportation since the invention of the automobile.

How does the technology work in an autonomous vehicle?

The technology uses a combination of cameras, radar, GPS, sensors and data acquired from other self-driving vehicles.

While we’re not seeing autonomous cars speed down roads in Windsor-Essex quite yet, Ontario will start allowing the testing of completely driver-less vehicles on roads and highways in January 2016.

Some of the technology of autonomous vehicles is already in place:

  • Cruise control
  • Auto or assisted parking: For the parallel parking challenged (Volvo is designing a car that you can leave in a parking lot and it will find a spot for you!)
  • Blind spot detection
  • Collision avoidance detection: Some cars on roads today will automatically break if it senses an object approaching quickly

Proponents of autonomous vehicles believe that driver-less cars will result in fewer accidents, lower fuel consumption and emissions, less congestion and improved traffic flow, will allow commuters to be more productive and may have a positive economic impact with improved transportation of goods.

There’s a lot to be determined still about autonomous vehicles.

  • What about drunk drivers?
  • What if the technology fails or is hacked?
  • In an impeding accident situation how is it decided it’s better to swerve into oncoming traffic or hit the vehicle in front of you?
  • How will this affect insurance rates?
  • Will driver-less owners require special licensing?
  • How will the benefits of driver-less cars impact businesses related to car maintenance and transportation industries?
  • What about treacherous driving situations?
  • Will drivers growing up with this new technology have the skills to maneuver in an accident situation?
  • Can our existing infrastructure support these vehicles?

How do you feel about driver-less cars?

How do you feel about this technology? Please leave your opinion below.

Don’t Let Road Rage Affect You

Don't Let Road Rage Get to You Gibb Insurance AmherstburgIt’s hot, you’re running late, someone is tailgating you and you’re stuck behind possibly the slowest tractor in Essex County! Arg!

It’s a fact: Incidences of road rage increase as the summer heats up.

Hot weather, construction backups, slow moving farm equipment, cyclists, erratic drivers can make tempers flare.

Don’t let road rage affect you.

  • Realize that traffic conditions and other driver’s poor behaviour is beyond your control.
  • Give erratic drivers all the room they need to behave badly.
  • Do not make eye contact, honk, or use hand gestures with bad drivers.
  • Be courteous and set an example – use turn signals, don’t tailgate and practice patience while on the road.

Remind yourself that this feeling will pass. Focus on the road and think of the good things in your life.

Have a Happy and Safe Canada Day!

Enjoy Canada Day week-end responsiblyIt’s finally summer! The kids are out of school, a few local plants are on shutdown and just about everyone is making plans for the long Canada Day holiday week-end!

Boating, golfing, camping, visiting friends at a cottage, backyard family BBQs or exploring all that Windsor and Essex County has to offer. Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it? And it is!

With an increase in road travel on long week-end, plus a rise in drinking and driving related accidents, please remember to be safe.

Make a plan to not drink and drive

  • Use a designated driver
  • Call a cab
  • Stay the night
  • Or use a service such that will bring you and your car home safely.

It’s simply not worth risking your livelihood or anyone’s life.