Bad drivers need to pay the price

Re: “Make bad drivers pay a lot more,” letter, Aug. 1.

I agree wholeheartedly.

When I lived in Manitoba in the 1970s and ’80s, my automobile insurance premiums were among the lowest I paid anywhere in Canada. This can be explained by how driver liability insurance was applied and how premiums were collected.

One paid for liability insurance with the purchase of a driver’s licence, not the automobile licence. A driver’s liability followed the driver through his driver’s licence, and not the vehicle being driven.

A driver’s liability was applicable whether they were driving their own vehicle or driving one owned by someone else. Any personal injury or property damage found to be 50 per cent or more the fault of the driver was paid for by the driver.

Insurance on the vehicle covered the replacement value should it receive damage in an accident that was not assessed to be the driver’s fault or if it was damaged through unknown causes, by an uninsured driver or by an act of God. That insurance fee was included in the purchase of the automobile’s licence.

If you were accident-free, or conviction free, your driver’s licence was renewed annually for a fee of $45, which included your liability insurance. If in that one-year period you had an accident that was 50 per cent or more your fault, or if you had other driving convictions, the $45 fee would increase to hundreds of dollars.

In Manitoba at the time, bad drivers paid, good drivers were rewarded with lower fees.

Lorne Holland


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