Romanov Report 53 - Nov 17, 2006

taking picture of a car accident-min.jpg


Road Rage causes crashes. gives a behind-the-scenes peek at road rage studies.

Weather causes crashes. Here are the secrets to avoid a crash.

Damage to Your Insurance Rate

It doesn't matter whether you have a parking lot fender bender or if you total your car, your rate will increase by the same amount.

Insurance companies don't base their rates on the amount of damage to the vehicle or cost of the claim. The rate is based on the probability that if you've had one accident, you're probably going to have another.

The Wild Card: Every company is going to charge you a different rate after that accident. The question is how much is your insurance rate going to increase? The insurance company will only give you one rate, but with, you have the ability to search everywhere. This means you hold the wild card.

To find out, do this quick rate calculation on your driving record "as is", then go back and add an accident to see how much your rate could be hammered:


A Must See: The Ontario government did this comparison of 52 insurance company rates for this "poor soul" with an accident. Click below to see how being with the wrong insurance company can cost you almost 10,000!!!!!!


If you have an accident, don't be afraid to switch insurance companies for a better rate.

Accidentally Speaking

According to your insurance rate, an accident is an accident whether you were "At-Fault" or "Partially At-Fault". It's only when you are completely "Not At-Fault" that your insurance rate will not increase.

I have contacted the office of Greg Sorbara, Ontario Finance Minister, to request a meeting to discuss the "Partially At-Fault" rulings and their need to be updated in light of today's insurance rates.

The finance minister's office said their response time to my request for a meeting would be within two weeks. Hopefully, by the next Romanov Report I'll let you know if we got that meeting.

Here's the impact of being "Partially At-Fault"

No Accidents: Say you own this Smart Car and you're somewhere over 30 years old with no accidents. Depending on your postal code, your insurance rate could range from:

$1,566 to $6,316 --> $4,750 difference.

1 Accident: Let's say you got in a fender bender and you were "partially at-fault". Your rate could range anywhere between:

$4,125 to $7,364 --> $3,239 difference.

Occasional Driver: What if you didn't have a "partially at-fault" accident, but your son did? Your rate could range anywhere between:

$4,847 to $8,440 --> $3,593 difference.

2 Partially At-Fault Accidents: What if you both had fender benders within the last 6 years? Your rate could range anywhere between:

$6,980 to $10,885 --> $3,905 difference.

Throw in a ticket each, with the 2 partially at-fault accidents, and your rate could range anywhere between:

$7,080 to $11,449 --> $4,369 difference.

Convinced? Don't pay more, pay the lowest rate, which can be sourced through regardless of your driving record, good or awful.

Paying Your Own Claim: Only a couple of insurance companies won't increase your rate if you pay your own claim. Check this out with your broker now, before you have that accident.

Joke Of The Week

A police officer pulls over a speeding car.

The officer said,"I clocked you at 80 km per hour, sir."

The driver said,"Gee, officer I had it on cruise control at 60, perhaps your radar gun needs calibrating."

The driver's wife said, "Now don't be silly, dear, you know that this car doesn't have cruise control."

As the officer wrote out the ticket, the driver looked over at his wife and growled,"Can't you please keep your mouth shut for once?"

(Note To Self: 1 ticket, which stays on your record for 3 years, could cause a clean driver's record to increase by $500).

The wife said, "You should be thankful your radar detector went off when it did."

As the officer made out the second ticket for the illegal radar detector unit, the man glared at his wife and said through clenched teeth,"Darn it, woman, can't you keep your mouth shut?"

(Note To Self: 2 tickets could cause your insurance rate to increase by $1,500).

The officer frowned and said, "I notice that you're not wearing your seat belt, sir. That's an automatic $125 fine."

The driver said, "Yeah, well, you see officer, I had it on, but took it off when you pulled me over so that I could get my licence out of my back pocket."

His wife said, "Now, dear, you know very well that you didn't have your seat belt on. You never wear your seat belt when you're driving."

As the police officer was writing out the third ticket the driver turned to his wife and barked,"Will you keep quiet??"

(Note To Self: 3 tickets could cause your insurance rate to increase by $2,500, and cause some insurance companies to cancel your policy. If you don't know what will "trigger" your insurance company's cancellation rules, ask).

In sudden sympathy, the officer asked the woman,"Does your husband always talk to you this way?"

She replied,"Only when he's been drinking, officer."

(Note To Self: With 3 tickets and a DUI your rate could increase to over $20,000. Moral of the story... be nice to your spouse).

TOP 10 Most Stolen Vehicles

To view the car pictures click on the link below:

  • 2000 Honda Civic SiR 2-door
  • 1999 Honda Civic SiR 2-door
  • 2004 Subaru Impreza WRX/WRX STi 4-door AWD
  • 1999 Acura Integra 2-door
  • 1994 Honda Civic Si 2-door Hatchback
  • 1998 Acura Integra 2-door
  • 1993 Dodge Shadow Convertible
  • 1996 Honda Civic Si 2-door Hatchback
  • 2000 Audi TT Quattro 2-door Coupe
  • 1996 Chev/GMC Blazer/Jimmy S Series 2-door 4WD

TOP Least Stolen Vehicles

  • 2000 Saab 9-5 4-door
  • 2002 Volvo S60 4-door AWD
  • 2002 Pontiac Bonneville 4-door
  • 1998 Lincoln Continental 4-door
  • 2001 Ford/Mercury Taurus/Sable Wagon
  • 2001 Pontiac Bonneville 4-door
  • 2002 Oldsmobile Silhouette
  • 1997 Saturn SW1 Wagon
  • 1998 Toyota Avalon XLS 4-door
  • 2000 Lincoln Continental 4-door
  • 2005 Saturn Ion 4-door Sedan
  • 1996 Buick Le Sabre 4-door

TOP Safest Cars To Drive

To view the car pictures click on the link below:

  • Audi A6
  • Audi A4
  • Saab 9-3
  • Subaru Legacy
  • Hyundai Entourage
  • Kia Sedona
  • Mercedes M class
  • Volvo XC90
  • Acura RDX
  • Honda Pilot
  • Subaru B9 Tribeca
  • Honda CR-V
  • Subaru Forester

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's Top Safety Pick Award of the year has just gone to the 2007 Acura RDX 4-door AWD.

However, has proven that the safety factor doesn't always mean the best insurance rate.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada rates vehicles using an injury factor from 1 to 5, with one being the best when it comes to injury and death claims, and 5 being the worst.

A rate comparison from the top 30 insurance companies, from lowest to highest, between the Top Safety Pick, which has a factor of 1, and the 2007 Toyota Rav4 4WD, 4-door which has a factor of 5, reveals that "safety" isn't the only factor in determining your insurance rate:

Driver Profile:  Clean Driver, Age 40, Toronto Car Lowest Rate Highest Rate 2007 Acura RDX $1,834 $5,621 2007 Toyota Rav4 $1,731 $5,756 Driver Profile:  One Accident (2 years old), Age 40, Toronto Car Lowest Rate Highest Rate 2007 Acura RDX $3,373 $6,068 2007 Toyota Rav4 $3,397 $6,227

Other factors such as age, driving history, postal code, length of time licensed, cost of vehicle repairs and theft ratings all affect the bottom line.

The key for drivers who buy the "safest cars" in hope of a better insurance rate is to use's rate comparison guide, which blends their driving profile and other rating factors, matching them up to the 3 best rates.

If not, you may end up paying hundreds, even thousands of dollars more than necessary, as shown by the spread of rates above.