Paramedics at a crash scene near Penticton Nov. 18. Bodily injury claims have been increasing in recent years.

ICBC to seek 2012 rate increase

ICBC is applying for a basic insurance rate increase, as bodily injury claims increase.

The Insurance Corp. of B.C. has announced it is applying for an increase to its mandatory basic vehicle insurance for 2012 to help cover an increase in claims and a decline in investment income.

ICBC president Jon Schubert said Tuesday the corporation’s bodily injury claims have jumped, contributing to a $200 million increase in overall claims in the first nine months of 2011. Annual bodily injury claims have climbed by $350 million in the past five years, and are expected to reach $1.7 billion this year.

“We have not increased our rates since 2007 and there have been a number of rate decreases during that time,” Schubert said.

ICBC reported net income for the first nine months of the year of $52 million, down from $331 million in the same period in 2010. Despite that, its rate change application to the B.C. Utilities Commission will seek to decrease rates on its optional coverage, where it faces competition from private insurance companies.

Finance Minister Kevin Falcon cited ICBC’s revenue decline as the biggest factor in the B.C. government’s worsening deficit position. Quarterly results for the provincial treasury show a projected deficit of $3.1 billion for the year ending in March, up $313 million from the July estimate.

Falcon said insurance companies around the world have seen investment income fall off with the continued economic slump in the United States and instability in Europe. Schubert said most of ICBC’s investments have been moved into short-term bonds in response to the volatility of financial markets.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Tsunami warning cancelled for coastal British Columbia

Warning issued following 7.9 earthquake off Kodiak, AK

UPDATE: Police probe fuel truck and train collision in Port Coquitlam

CP Rail reporting no injuries, driver of truck is safe.

Knitting for a cause

Tamara Cockroft knits “warm hugs” for babies

‘Restless night’ for Semiahmoo First Nation after tsunami warning

Alaska earthquake puts Semiahmoo First Nation on notice

UPDATE: Pioneer Ave filming to include snow effects, stunt driving and fire arms

Pioneer Avenue to be backdrop for scenes set in 1950s

Week in Review – January 19

Movie filming, water upgrades and more

Castlegar homicide victim identified

The victim was 38-year-old Jordan Workman of Castlegar, B.C.

B.C. Liberal leadership candidates get one last prime-time pitch

Leadership campaign to be decided in Feb. 3 vote

Homeless evicted from First Nation reserve land say they have nowhere to go

‘Why not just let us stay until spring?’ one camper at Chilliwack site pleads

Andrew Scheer on trade, Trump and Trudeau

Canada’s Conservative leader begins three-day visit to B.C.

Victims restrained, sex toys and cash stolen from B.C. adult store

Armed suspects sought in adult store robbery

UPDATED: 10 Safeways in Lower Mainland to close

Locations in Vancouver, Burnaby, Surrey, Coquitlam, Richmond and Mission slated to shut

Vancouver Islanders ponder need for tsunami siren song

Alarm sounds in Port Alberni but not at the DND base in Esquimalt

Five charged in bid to shut pop-up pot market in Vancouver’s Robson Square

Marijuana flower, edibles, money and some weapons were seized as part of weekend raid

Most Read