LEWISTON, ID - Many delivery drivers fight the clock on a regular basis to get us our meals, but some of them pose more of a threat to our safety and they may not even be aware of the issue.
It's not uncommon to see a restaurant delivery driver driving around town, trying to deliver hot food before it gets cold. According to American Insurance President John Sullivan, you might want to be concerned because some of these drivers may not know that they are uninsured.
"I think it's important for people to know that if they have a teenager, or if they get somehow involved in the pizza delivery business that there's new exclusions in their personal auto policy that may affect them. It could mean inadvertently that they have voided all their coverage on their auto policy," said Sullivan.
What Sullivan means is that when most people drive their own car, like many food delivery drivers do, they're covered by their own insurance. But some insurance companies now exclude food delivery from their policy. So if you're a delivery driver and your insurance company doesn't allow that, the coverage is void.
"It's kind of tragic," said Sullivan. "If you're involved in a car accident and you're involved the pizza delivery business and it's not in your coverage, there's simply no coverage to bring to bear."
These unknowingly uninsured drivers pose a safety threat for the rest of us on the road, if we should get into an accident with them. Sullivan said more delivery companies are hiring students and young people to do their deliveries. He said insurance companies are protecting themselves from the high risk scenario, of a young driver speeding to get a delivery in on time.
"People don't realize that they're voiding their coverage or may void their coverage, depending on what policy they have with what agent they have," said Sullivan.
The KLEW News Team called four different insurance agencies to see where they stand with the exclusion policy. If the personal auto policy is through Geico, the insurance is void when working for a big food delivery chain. A representative on the phone said mom and pop delivery shops have different rules that depend on each situation and person.
Allstate and Progressive both exclude food delivery from their policies, so while a driver is on the clock with these two companies, their coverage is nullified.
State Farm is the only one of the four companies we researched that does allow food delivery, as long as people aren't aren't being transported. There are options if coverage is void, but only before an accident occurs.
"It can be done under a commercial auto policy or in some cases they may be able to find a personal auto policy that does not exclude the delivery process, " said Sullivan.
It's important for all those delivering to check their insurance policies, for their sake and the sake of others in the community.
Depending on what delivery company you work for like Domino's, Sullivan said they may offer liability coverage while you're on the road. Some restaurant companies do cover their drivers and people shouldn't assume that all delivery drivers don't have extra coverage. But some drivers we spoke with didn't know they need additional coverage.