July 18, 2013

Before deciding whether or not her party should bring down the current government by voting against the new budget, Andrea Horwath decided that she would once again meet with Kathleen Wynne to discuss some changes, so the two of them sat down to tea. The foremost thing on Horwath’s mind was, of course, a 15% reduction in auto insurance rates and an accountability office. By the second cup of tea and a few crumpets served by Hudak, she had both. OR DID SHE? The 15% insurance reduction turned out to be only for certain people. So who are these certain people? I truly believe that they will be the ones that allow the insurance companies to install a “monitoring box” in their cars; THE BOX. The insurance companies have been pushing the idea for years but have never been able to make it mandatory. So, what exactly is THE BOX? What does it do? Why do I believe that within two years your 15% reduction will disappear? Why do I predict that you will likely be paying up to 50% MORE for your auto insurance? I’m glad you asked. The insurance companies claim that THE BOX will be strictly for research information. It will be hooked to your on-board computer and will record the driving habits of the car owner. What it REALLY does is this: It will record your braking habits including how often you use the brakes, how hard you brake and how often you change your brakes. How fast you drive. Where you drive. How far you drive every time you use the car. How fast you take off from a stopping position. How often you car is serviced. Before I go on and describe to you the way each of these things is going to increase your insurance from 30% to 50% or maybe even more, there is something you should know. Of course the insurance companies are the real bloodsuckers here, but the government is their vampire in the shadows. With an internet search you will find a company named Kantex Insurance Quotes. Their site gives you several insurance company names and what those companies charge you for insurance. The rates differ greatly between the cheapest company and the most expensive company. There is a reason for this, and that reason will be the subject of another article. One of the questions that will decide your insurance rate is, “WILL YOU ALLOW THE INSURANCE COMPANY TO INSTALL A MONITORING DEVICE IN YOUR CAR FOR A CHEAPER RATE (15%)?” The only importance to that question up until now was the number of people that answered “YES!!!” This provided the insurance companies with a survey that they can take to the government and, like Richard Dawson, can yell, “SURVEY SAYS…The majority of Ontarians want THE BOX installed in their cars. If you allow us to do this then we can reduce the auto insurance for those people by 15% with no problem.” So the government now has all the spools of wool they need to pull the wool over your eyes. So…back to THE BOX, which is really a super-computer of sorts. It can be attached to any vehicle that is computer-equipped. It not only reads what your vehicle is doing, it can ALTER some of the information. Allow me to elaborate on the previously mentioned 6 points:1. Not everyone uses their brakes in the same way. Some people are a little harder on their brakes than other people. One person’s brakes could be changed every year, while drivers like my self can go two years or more. Whatever way you use your brakes DOES NOT mean that you are driving dangerously or carelessly. It’s just the way you drive. THE BOX however, may interpret your braking as someone who tends to tailgate. Guess which way your rates will go? 2. As anyone in Southern Ontario will tell you, the best way to get killed is to drive 100kph on the 400, the 401, or any number of major highways. The fact is, as long as you are doing 110kph or 120kph the police see that as a normal driving speed. However, THE BOX sees it differently. You are a constant speeder and a dangerous driver. Get in line behind the ‘hard-brakers’ and you had better have your cheque book ready. 3. There are a lot of people who use their cars mostly in their own areas. Trips to the mall and to the doctor or to an assortment of other appointments. This requires a lot of slow driving and a lot of stopping. This also means getting in to parking lots and driving on streets that have low speed limits and speed bumps. THE BOX can translate this into high-risk downtown driving. Get in line behind the innocent victims of the insurance companies that we met in examples 1 and 2. 4. One of the questions that an insurance company will ask you is how far you drive your car every year. The line they have drawn is 17,000 kilometers per year to qualify as a recreational-use vehicle. For some reason, the government has allowed the insurance companies to gain access to D.O.T. records any time they want so they can check your yearly mileage. Remember…you have to put your mileage on your license plate renewal form. But with THE BOX they no longer have to do that. It tells them that information. If you drive 23,000 or maybe even 25,000 kilometers you probably won’t hear from your insurer. There is a reason for that. It’s all tabulated in KILOMETERS, NOT MILES. It just ain’t that far, folks! Anything OVER that and they will charge you as they charge someone who drives their car to work. That’s a much higher rate. THE BOX helps them out here by ALTERING the readings. If you are going away on weekends you are generally going to hit some slow heavy traffic. Just the same as you will when you are driving to different events around town. THE BOX will analyze your mileage and speeds. If you exceed the insurance company’s benchmark for mileage, THE BOX will average out your speed and distance travelled to show that they are warranted in raising your rates. By then we’ll have a conga-line of insurance company victims and it will just get longer and longer. 5. Point number five is extremely suspicious and can have absolutely terrible ramifications. There are a number of ways an insurance company can use this information against you. A car with a standard transmission takes off from a standing start differently than a car with an automatic transmission when entering traffic on a highway. Even though everything you do is within the law THE BOX can tell a different story. It stores all of your rapid accelerations and quick starts for a period of one year and then averages out the number of times that you had quick starts and rapid accelerations. It gives the insurance company a scale of how much they will raise your rates. It begins at, “We don’t like the way you drive” and then goes to, “We think you are drag-racing!” Now the victims are starting to pile-up. This dance isn’t fun any more. 6. How often you service your car doesn’t really sound like a big deal to anyone at first hearing, but to the insurance companies it is a MAJOR thing. THE BOX can read the general maintenance (oil changes etc.) and regular warranty service. The insurance company will use that information to mark you as a person that doesn’t take care of your vehicle and your rates will then be raised to the high-risk category. By no means is that the end of it. THE BOX is capable of many things such as hacking into your G.P.S. if your car is equipped with one. If you shop frequently in a plaza that has a bar located in it…well, you can guess the rest. The newer your car is the more information its computer will have to offer up. It’s no secret that all three political parties in Ontario have been MORE than friendly to insurance companies. If you think for a second that any of the three will do you any favors… Good luck to ya! The fact is, no matter what your political persuasion YOU ARE ONLY IMPORTANT ON VOTING DAY!!! After that, you are nothing. All that is left are three parties that are extremely corporate-friendly. And the only thing left to say to them is…HUDAK, HORWATH AND WYNNE ,…YOU HAVE FAILED THE PEOPLE OF THIS PROVINCE!!! Stay tuned for further installments of Your Ward News’ investigation into the dirty underworld of auto insurance in Ontario… … …


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