Saskatchewan adding insurance options: CBC

According to CBC, Saskatchewan provincial insurance body SGI is adding new options that could lower prices for motorcycle riders.

If you look at our stories about motorcycle insurance over the last few years, many of them have been about the ongoing fight over rates in Saskatchewan. The story started in February of 2013, when the government first announced they were considering massive price hikes for the province’s riders. Over the next couple years, many motorcyclists did indeed see huge jumps in their insurance costs. To add insult to injury, some of the solutions SGI offered to riders (mandatory riding gear, or a voluntary onboard telematics program) were just as onerous as the price hike.

Now there might be some relief for riders – sort of. SGI says they’re prepared to offer riders an insurance option with reduced benefits in case of a crash. The reduced benefit package will take away a rider’s right to sue after a crash; as a result, Don McMorris, the government minister in charge of SGI, advised riders to consider their insurance needs very carefully before choosing the third option.

The fact that many of Saskatchewan’s car drivers seem to resent subsidizing motorcycle insurance rates is troubling when considering the long term, though. Any time these stories run in the national media, the comments in the peanut gallery show plenty of Internet tough guys who think motorcycles are death traps that they shouldn’t help to insure – regardless of whether or not cagers are actually responsible for a huge portion of the province’s insurance costs in collisions involving motorcycles. It’s too bad SGI won’t allow private insurance into the province, because if they did, motorcycle rates would no doubt fall, as riders paid their actual costs.

9 thoughts on “Saskatchewan adding insurance options: CBC”

  1. The reason Sask Govt Insurance (SGI), not me, makes this argument is that they claim the amounts paid out for injury recovery, death benefits and scars (yes, scars, more on that below) is so much higher for bike riders. Therefore, on a per capita basis motorcycle insurance costs are higher so riders should pay more. As others have said, if this was really true, wouldn’t the private insurers have figured it out.

    The idea behind the no-sue option, and remember it is an option, has come from some riders. Those individuals with premium health and disability insurance through work don’t really feel they need to have their motorcycle insurance cover the same thing they are already covered for. The big danger of course is Joe Schmoe will just pick the cheapest coverage, and if Joe doesn’t have the gold-plated insurance at work he will be screwed.

    As for the cost of scars, I crashed in 2007 in BC. I’m from SK. It was not my fault. I swerved suddenly and violently to avoid a car that had just pulled out in front of me onto a highway. I successfully avoided the collision and instead did a long low side slide, but wearing full protective gear. Something pierced my knee armor though, probably a bike part, and so the pants tore at the knee, and I ended up with some road rash on my knee about 2 x 3 inches. For that scar, I got paid $12,000. Personally, a boon for me, but it gives you the idea of the cost of scars, especially with many riders not wearing protective gear. This is a Canada-wide insurance standard too, not just something in SK. Remember it if you ever get a scar, even if you are in a car.

    The irony of that crash is the mountie, who never even spoke to me at the crash site, declared me at fault because it was a single vehicle accident. The car driver fled the scene. I did successfully fight that though.

  2. “What a terrible waste… Hi, I’m actor Troy McClure! You might remember me from such driver’s ed films as “Alice’s Adventures Through The Windshield Glass” and “The Decapitation of Larry Leadfoot.” For the next sixty minutes, we’ll be seeing actual film of car crash victims.”

  3. “The fact that many of Saskatchewan’s car drivers seem to resent subsidizing motorcycle insurance rates…”

    Actuarial studies have shown that motorcycle insurance is NOT subsidized by car drivers. Especially in Saskatchewan. Get your facts straight, Mr.Kuryluk.

    1. Hey, I don’t believe it is either. But
      that is what they think

      . If it was true that car drivers subsidized motorcycle rates, we’d see higher rates from private insurers, and we don’t.

  4. Im not sure how the numbers and statisics come into play. However it doesnt seem to add up. Cars to motorcycle ratio on the roads. How is it if for every couple hundered cars/trucks to one bike does it drive the car insurance up? I would think its the other way around. Then I would be currious as to if most claims made by a motorcyclests are due to collisions with another car or due to the lack of maintained roads and highways in sask. And who gets to pay high insurance rates in that case. Yes I agree those whom ride a bike versus car/truck should have rates a little higher as they choose to place themselves in a higher risk factor however not at the ludicrous amount being asked of them now

  5. I bet they’re still cheaper than Ontario, where there are private insurance companies and the costs are often as much or more than the motorcycle was.

  6. Removing rights for a rider to sue makes no sense: If a rider is in an accident caused by a cager and successfully sues the cager, then the insurance company doesn’t have to pay out on the rider’s policy. So allowing a rider to sue SHOULD reduce the insurance rate for the rider!

    the problem here is that the insurance company is the same for the rider and the cager, and they don’t care about who’s responsible for the accident: They only care about the total cost. By removing the rider’s right to sue, they get to keep an injured rider in penury for the rest of their life, while letting the at-fault cager off their responsibility for the pain and suffering the cager caused.

    As for the complaints from the cagers, the cagers are not “subsidizing the rider’s insurance”: The cagers are simply paying their fair share since they are at fault for a huge percentage of the accidents involving riders.

    Burn all the insurance shark b*st*rds at the stake!

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