The winter of 2012 has resulted in less snow, less ice, less potholes, less cell phone use and texting by drivers, less property damage to automobiles, and less bodily injury claims from motor vehicle accidents and slip and falls.
The Toronto Police Traffic Services reports that from November 2011 through February 2012 there were almost 5000 less motor vehicle collisions than the same period one year before. York region data shows a 21% decrease.
Various collision and auto repair centers in the Greater Toronto Area report similar numbers in decreased business. The writer's source, Jorge Esteves, of Dupont Auto Collision reports that his body shop has lost 30% in revenue this winter.
Less potholes results in less vehicles suffering damage to tires, wheels, and suspensions. Insurance claims are reduced.
Legislation banning drivers from talking or texting while driving further reduces accidents, and insurance claims.
No snow and ice, has resulted in somewhere between 23% and 30% less collisions, property damage claims, and personal injury claims, both motor vehicle and slip and fall.
All of the above consequences of this year's mild winter conditions, benefit the insurance industry… the same pillar of corporate America, which has seen fit to increase insurance premiums annually, and reduce benefits regularly, since the Ontario motorists protection plan came into force in the province of Ontario in 1990. What will they do now?
Assuming that the insurance companies have saved between 20% and 30% in their recent Toronto area experience, will they continue to lobby our government for reduction of benefits, increase in thresholds, deductibles, and premiums? Or, on the other hand, will they do the right thing and divert their windfall profit back to our personal injury clients by way of increased treatment, allowing more treatment plans, paying more benefits, and actually helping injured victims on the road to recovery?
Statistics obtained from:
1) Toronto Star fifth of March 2012
2) Toronto Star ninth of March 2012