The following, taken from the Tire Business Web site (www.tirebusiness.com), are excerpts of responses to the question: ``What's happening to your company's insurance costs?"
Our fleet insurance premiums are going up by 90 percent in 2002!
Don Frisby, President Frisby Tire Co., Ottawa, Ontario
The escalating cost of insurance for the independent tire retailer is becoming astronomical.
In the past year my premiums have increased more than 40 percent with zero claims. Worker's Comp appears to be going the same way.
The answer I get from the insurance groups seems to be a standard response of: ``...ever since Sept.11....'' I'm beginning to think many industries in our country are trying to use a national disaster as a way of making more money off the working class of America.
Does anyone else seem to have this feeling?
Mike Jaquish, Owner, Athens Tire & Alignment, Athens, Tenn.
As of Jan. 1, all hourly active and retired employees now have to pay insurance premiums. It is sad when you see management wasting as much money on overtime every day.
After all, the retirees have paid their dues to the company. They bear the cost of waste that they have no control over any more.
Richard Etienne, Sav builder, Continental Tire North America Inc., Mount Vernon, Ill.
I have 21 employees. I pay all of the employees' health insurance and have since 1975 as well as for the families of selected employees.
In 2001 I paid more than $32,000 in health insurance. I'm not sure how much longer we can keep absorbing the costs of health insurance.
On the other hand, how can an employee possibly afford to pay these insurance costs?
I'm not sure what can be done, but something must be for these benefits to continue.
Ed Miller, Owner, Ed's Tire Factory, Medford Ore.
We are absolutely getting hosed! We have a squeaky-clean record and our P&C costs have increased almost 300 percent in two years.
Our agent told us the insurance companies have lost their (butts) in the investment markets in the last two years. And no suprise: He said they are using the Ford-Firestone tire recall to justify rate increases far above and beyond what can be rationally explained. By the way, we heard this before the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11th.
George Pehanick, CEO, East Bay Tire, Fairfield, Calif.