POLITICS

Saskatchewan pilot program to track motorcycle use for insurance rates

06/04/2013 04:06 EDT | Updated 08/04/2013 05:12 EDT
REGINA - Saskatchewan is planning a pilot program that will track motorcycle use to help set insurance rates after a proposed increase outraged riders.

Saskatchewan Government Insurance wants to install telematics devices on the bikes of several hundred volunteers.

The device records driving information such as speed, braking, mileage and location.

Donna Harpauer (HAR'-power), minister responsible for SGI, says it's the first step to see if insurance based on usage could work in Saskatchewan.

SGI had proposed a rate hike earlier this year that would have seen insurance costs for motorcycles go up by an average of 73 per cent.

Anger from motorcyclists pressured SGI to cap the increase and look at other options for rate changes.

"Usage-based insurance is the ultimate in rating fairness because it essentially lets the driver control their own insurance rate through their driving behaviour," Harpauer said in a news release Tuesday.

"Simply put, those who drive responsibly pay less and those who don't pay more."

SGI says the pilot program is only about gathering information and no rates will be affected during that time. It says the pilot could begin this riding season pending availability of volunteers, devices and installation.