One bill headed to the California governor’s desk is touted to address existing insurance data gaps for sero-emission trucks and truck fleets that use advanced fuels and related technologies.
Gov. Gavin Newsom previously announced the California Air Resources Board reached a Clean Truck Partnership with leading truck manufacturers. The partnership is intended to help meet the state’s first-in-the-nation zero-emission vehicle truck standards.
The action stems from a CARB regulation approved this spring that no new fossil-fueled medium-duty and heavy-duty trucks will be sold in the state starting in 2036.
Data gap concerns
Assembly lawmakers have agreed to Senate changes to a bill that would require the California Department of Insurance to collect data on the availability and affordability of insurance for battery-powered, hydrogen-powered or other zero-emission trucks.
Additionally, CDI would work with CARB to create an “online insurance information resource tool” for the public to find information and insurance options for affected vehicles. The process must be completed by Jan. 1, 2025.
Statehouse approval clears the way for the bill, AB844, to move to Newsom’s desk.
Assemblymember Mike Gipson, D-Carson, is the bill author. Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara is the bill sponsor.
The pair wrote regarding zero-emission trucks that “new technologies, without long histories of actuarial information, can face challenges finding insurance.”
Gipson added that fleets adopting zero-emission technologies may face a limited market for insurance, which could slow the deployment of zero-emission heavy-duty trucks.
In addition, Gipson said slowed deployment would hamper the state’s ability to meet upcoming deadlines for fleets to transition to new zero-emission technologies.
“This bill addresses the existing data gaps by directing CDI to collect specific data,” a bill analysis reads.
State trucking association behind effort
The California Trucking Association provided testimony in support.
The group stated that “early adopters of zero-emission trucks have indicated that insurers were initially reluctant to underwrite them and, in some cases, only agreed to insure the partial value of the truck.” Additionally, the American Trucking Associations said the cost to insure affected trucks is expected to “increase dramatically.” LL
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