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Motor Truck Cargo and Freight Insurance

    Cargo insurance, sometimes referred to as freight or inland marine insurance, provides financial protection for motor carriers that haul freight and commodities on behalf of their clients.

    Truck cargo insurance covers the freight (or commodity) you’re hauling as a for-hire trucker. It protects you against liability for cargo that is lost or damaged due to fire, collision, theft, reefer breakdown, something hitting your load, etc. A motor carrier is liable if the cargo they are handling is damaged, lost, or destroyed. Cargo coverage, sometimes referred to as truck cargo coverage or inland marine coverage, provides you financial protection to cover the cost of the cargo, cleanup, pollution removal, and more. Many clients require for-hire truckers to carry cargo coverage to insure their loads while you’re transporting for them.

    Our policies are some of the best in the industry, and they’re backed by our fast and efficient claims service. If you were to have a claim, our unique claims-handling process helps us to minimize your loss because we make recovery and salvage of your cargo our priority.

    Why do I need motor truck cargo insurance?

    Truck drivers who transport food, medicine, and other items generally need freight and cargo insurance to be better protected against unexpected losses or damages incurred during shipping. Cargo insurance can provide you financial protection to cover the cost of the cargo, cleanup, pollution removal, and more.

    Many shippers, wholesalers, distributors, and manufacturers require for-hire truckers to carry motor cargo coverage to insure their loads while you’re transporting for them.


    You need to protect your trucking business. We’re 100% focused on trucking insurance.  Call 877.294.1446 or Click

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    What is the best motor truck cargo insurance?

    At Joe Morten & Son, we have found that motor truck cargo insurance coverage varies widely among insurance carriers more than any other type of trucking insurance. It is often notable for what is not covered.

    When our customers are looking for the best motor truck cargo insurance, Joe Morten & Son is pleased to offer coverage from Great West Casualty Company. Great West provides broad form cargo insurance — which means they cover many losses that other insurers exclude.


    • Unrecoverable earned freight charges after a loss.
    • Loss-recovery expenses in addition to the limit of insurance.
    • Clean-up and pollution-removal expenses up to $10,000 in addition to the limit of insurance.


    • Alcohol products.
    • Cargo in transit for more than 72 hours.
    • Consumer electronics.
    • Marring, scratching, packing, and rough handling, unless shipper error.
    • Wet loads.
    • Mysterious disappearance or pilferage, including from an employee when the Infidelity or Dishonesty Extension is added.
    • Involuntary parting with the cargo by fraud or trick.
    • Refrigeration breakdown, failure to fuel, or maintenance of refrigeration equipment.
    • Spoilage.


    • That cargo must be attended at all times.
    • A coinsurance penalty for underinsurance.
    • A locked vehicle warranty.
    • An equipment maintenance warranty.
    • A tarped load warranty.
    • Reduced limits for certain commodities.


    Hired Auto Cargo Coverage

    Hired Auto Cargo Coverage extends your protection to cargo loads where you must hire a tractor to deliver your loads (that are under a bill of lading). This is for when:

    • You borrow or rent an additional truck,
    • You ask another truck driver who has limited (or no) freight insurance to haul a portion of your cargo, or
    • You work with another motor carrier to trip lease and haul freight under your authority.


    Infidelity & Dishonesty Coverage 

    An Infidelity & Dishonesty Coverage endorsement adds freight insurance to cover losses due to the dishonesty of an employee or an owner-operator driver while the cargo is on or in a truck or trailer.

    What does motor truck cargo insurance cost?

    The cost of motor truck cargo insurance is based on the value of your shipment(s). Other factors that may impact motor truck cargo costs include the nature of the cargo, shipping routes, and your loss history. For your specific situation, please talk to a Joe Morten & Son agent.




    Motor Truck Cargo insurance quotes

    We have focused on the long-haul trucking industry for more than 85 years and specialize in providing outstanding motor truck cargo insurance from Great West Casualty Company for motor carriers and owner operators. Let us help you with a quote.

    You can request a motor truck cargo insurance quote online or call us at 877-294-1446 to see what we can offer from Great West Casualty Company.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Why do truckers need cargo insurance?

    It is a good business practice for truckers to have cargo insurance. A trucker’s customer or a shipper may require the trucker to have cargo insurance to protect them from damage to their (the customer’s) cargo during transport. Remember, the trucker is responsible for the cargo while it is under their care, custody, and control.

    Are there specific types of cargo that may not be covered by standard cargo insurance?

    Although standard cargo insurance provides protection for many types of cargo, there can be conditions and limitations from policy to policy. It's important to review your cargo policy with your Joe Morten & Son agent for details on specific exclusions and limitations.

    What steps should truckers take in the event of cargo damage or loss?

    In the event of cargo damage or loss, consider the following: 

    1. Ensure safety: Ensure the safety of everyone involved, and if needed, call emergency services.
    2. Notify police in the event of a cargo theft or other crime.
    3. When possible, take reasonable steps to protect the cargo from further damage. Not all cargo loss or damage necessarily results in a rejected shipment, and a cargo claim may sometimes be avoided or greatly reduced.
    4. Gather relevant information: Bills of lading, shipping receipts, rate confirmations, photos, inspection reports, temperature records, etc.
    5. Avoid admitting fault: Cargo loss and damage often requires investigation and may be the result of others’ acts or omissions, an inherent vice, an act of God, etc.
    6. Report the incident: Notify your insurance company as soon as possible.
    Can truckers transfer their cargo insurance coverage to other carriers or subcontractors?

    Most cargo insurance policies restrict the policy owner from transferring coverage to others.