Auto insurance is lacking among a growing number of Ohio drivers

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Over the last 10 years, the number of uninsured motorists caught has risen by over 409,000.

Since 2002, the number of drivers without auto insurance that have been caught without coverage has increased from 690,716 to 1.1 million.

Many are concerned that this is driving rates unnecessarily skyward.

It is the motorists who are following the state law and who have been maintaining their auto insurance coverage who are now paying for the ever increasing number of uninsured drivers using Ohio’s roads. Despite the fact that they may auto insurancenot be at fault, insured motorists are facing larger costs out of their own pockets when they are involved in crashes with drivers without coverage.

Though their own auto insurance will cover them, they must still pay deductibles and risk higher rates.

In 2010, the last year for which there are complete statistics from the State Highway Patrol, uninsured drivers were at fault for over 8,700 road accidents in the Ohio. Moreover, stats have also shown that three quarters of the time that a motorist without auto insurance is involved in a crash, he or she is at fault.

Though the number of crashes that involve drivers without coverage has dropped over the last ten years, the data from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles is showing that there is a rapidly growing number of residents of the state who are using the roads without paying for the legally required state minimum of coverage. The 1.1 million uninsured drivers who were caught driving without coverage in 2011 represents one in every eight licensed driver in Ohio. This represents an increase of 60 percent over ten years ago.

According to Lt. Anthony Pfeifer, from the Clinton Township police, “It’s one of those laws that’s tough to enforce.” He explained that “It’s there, but the only way we can enforce it is to ask (during a stop) if they have proof of insurance.”

Since 1953, the law in Ohio has stated that drivers must carry proof of auto insurance coverage for property damage and injuries. However, while the law may not be new, the rate of uninsured motorists within that state is among the highest in the country.

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