Climate Change is Partially Responsible for Rising Car Insurance Prices

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Weather conditions have been getting worse—and as a result, we are seeing more weather-related car crashes.
According to our data here at Jerry, climate change seems to be having an impact on road safety. Unfortunately, that also means car insurance rates may be impacted. 
A person driving down a highway in the rain
Weather-related crashes increased by 72% from 2005-2019.

Climate change may contribute to more car crashes

Jerry analyzed crash data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) from 2005-2019. Climate-related crashes were those where rain, drizzle, snow, fog, smog, smoke, sleet, dust, severe crosswinds, blowing sand/dirt, cloudy weather, or blowing snow were listed on the crash report as causes for the crash.  
The data reveals that weather-related crashes have actually increased by 397 incidents on average year over year in the last 14 years. In fact, weather-related crashes increased by  72% from 2005-2019, almost doubling (from 4,813 to 8277) over the 14-year period.
Interestingly, there’s actually been a dramatic increase in weather-related car crashes due to cloudiness in the past several years. In fact, it’s the leading cause for weather-related crashes according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Other info in our data analysis reveals that in 2015, rain and cloud-related crashes had a mini-peak, while in 2016, rain-related crashes steadily increased. 

Insurance rates and climate change 

Unfortunately when there are more accidents, it means that there are more claims. As a result, car insurance companies tend to raise rates. So it’s safe to say that if weather-related accidents tend to increase over the next few years, so will the cost of car insurance. 
It’s also important to remember that while accidents do contribute to how car insurance companies set rates, it’s not the only factor. 
When determining your car insurance premium, a company will also look at your personal accident history, where you live and how often you drive. Depending on what state you live in, a company might also take your gender and credit history into consideration. 

Driving safe in severe weather

As severe weather may increase over the next few years, you should make an effort to be more aware while on the road—especially since there are more drivers commuting to work again, leading to more congested roadways. 
Not only will getting into an accident cause a headache for you because you’ll have to file a claim, but also obviously you want to make your own safety, as well as others you are driving with, the most important priority. 
If you’re driving in bad weather, some basic things you can do is make sure you are leaving a cushion between you and the car in front of you, and drive slowly, according to J.D. Power
If you are driving in fog, always remember to have your low beams on. This will help you see, but also help others on the road see you. 
If the weather gets really bad very suddenly, it might be a safer idea to pull over rather than try to drive through it. Even if you have somewhere to be, it’s better to take precautions than risk getting into an accident. 
It’s also a good idea to regularly make sure your car’s equipment is in working order, especially in the winter months. Your windshield wipers need to be working, and your headlights need to be clean. 
And of course, whenever you’re on the road, make sure you buckle up. 

Get covered

If weather continues to affect car insurance rates and you find that you are paying more for coverage, Jerry can help. 
The app compares quotes from up to 45 different insurance companies for you in under a minute, without any long forms to fill out. 
Jerry will send you quotes that compare to your current coverage—and as a licensed broker, it takes care of your insurance needs from start to finish. The app also monitors your car insurance rate every six months on an ongoing basis.

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