VML Insurance Programs celebrates Where the Rubber Meets the Road defensive driving campaign successes

Press Release, February 21, 2013

– At banquet VML Insurance Programs provides 33 award plaques and discusses success of the campaign on reducing claims, injuries and creating safer roadways –

Richmond, VA – In 2009 VML Insurance Programs (VMLIP) started a campaign to address losses related to vehicle incidents. At the time vehicle losses were accounting for half the cost of all claims for the insurance pool.

On February 19 VMLIP celebrated successes of the Where the Rubber Meets the Road (WTRMTR) campaign at a banquet for participating VMLIP members at The Place at Innsbrook.

WTRMTR Award Banquet
WTRMTR Award Banquet

“Since the campaign began we have seen a 22 percent reduction in the number of claims and a 16 percent reduction in the overall costs of our automobile liability claims among those first year members participating,” said VMLIP Director of Safety Services Beth Rosenthal.

Since it began 46 VMLIP members, consisting of cities, towns, schools, authorities and other governmental entities, have enrolled in the campaign. From those members 124 instructor-trainers have then trained more than 14,400 students representing bus drivers, straight truck and van drivers, maintenance vehicle drivers and more.

The WTRMTR campaign coaches entity trainers to provide their drivers with defensive driving instruction using the National Safety Council’s Defensive Driver four-hour course as a guide. Through the WTRMTR campaign, VMLIP funds tuition, course materials, lodging, meals and travel expenses, for member employees to attend the two-day instructor training class.  Financial support is provided from VMLIP reinsurer ACE.

WTRMTR Award Banquet
WTRMTR Award Banquet

In return members must agree to provide driver instruction through their trainers to a minimum of 90 percent of their entity drivers within the first year of their signed agreement.  Additionally they must conduct annual DMV record checks, have a driver selection and retention program in place, and have and enforce a vehicle use policy.

Members meeting these goals receive a 5 percent credit on their automobile liability coverage premium.

“The National Safety Council estimates that a workplace motor vehicle crash costs an employer more than $24,000,” said Rosenthal. “And if the employee is injured those costs rise to more than $125,000. We know that providing this type of training to drivers can help reduce accidents and injury and keep all Virginians safer on the roads.”

33 member entities that have achieved their first year training goals were provided with recognition plaques for the campaign. Those receiving plaques include:

  • Town of Abingdon *
  • Alexandria City Public Schools
  • Augusta County Service Authority *
  • Chesapeake Public Schools *
  • Danville Public Schools *
  • City of Danville
  • Town of Dumfries *
  • Town of Edinburg
  • Fairfax County Water Authority
  • City of Fredericksburg *
  • Town of Front Royal *
  • Halifax County Service Authority *
  • City of Harrisonburg *
  • Henry County Public Service Authority *
  • City of Hopewell *
  • City of Manassas *
  • Town of Marion
  • Town of Mount Jackson
  • City of Petersburg
  • Prince William County Service Authority *
  • City of Radford
  • Richmond Metropolitan Authority *
  • Town of South Boston *
  • Southeastern Public Service Authority *
  • Spotsylvania County Schools *
  • Suffolk Public Schools *
  • City of Suffolk *
  • Virginia Beach City Public Schools *
  • Western Virginia Water Authority *
  • Westmoreland County
  • City of Williamsburg *
  • York County
  • York County Schools

* Members marked with an asterisk have received their plaques and pictures are available.

Motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of occupational fatalities and the leading cause of death for those aged two to 39 and 50 to 72. Defensive driving courses are key toward providing strategies to reduce collision-related injuries, fatalities and costs. (National Safety Council)

Entities completing their first year training goals can continue receiving the 5 percent premium credit for continuing to train 50 percent of their drivers annually and maintain policy and program elements. For more information on the campaign visit the VMLIP website at: www.vrsa.us and select “resources.”

VML Insurance Programs is administered by the Virginia Municipal League.  This nonprofit group self insurance program provides automobile, property, liability and workers’ compensation coverage to more than 460 local political subdivisions across Virginia.  For 30 years VML Insurance Programs has provided pool members with superior financial stability and effective risk management services.  For more information visit: www.vrsa.us or follow VMLIP at: www.facebook.com/vmlip.

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Editor’s note: Interviews are available upon request. For additional story ideas and information, contact Hollie Cammarasana at (804) 237-7312 or: hcammarasana@vmlins.org