Cars Are Crashing Into Trucks On Purpose For Insurance Money


There seems to be a whole mess of four-wheeler drivers who are involved in accidents with big rigs because no one ever taught them not to cut off a tractor-trailer traveling at 55mph when they’re only doing 35 from the on-ramp. Their mental prowess definitely leaves something to be desired, but their lack of intelligence doesn’t even come close to matching the brain-dead group of people who have been cutting off commercial trucks to get in accidents on purpose.

You might think that no one could possibly be that stupid, but that’s exactly what over 100 drivers in the Las Vegas area alone have done over the past year. According to a new report issued by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), they’re doing it to try and cash in on the insurance claims.

Scams like this have been around for a long time, but only recently have they started targeting large trucks. The scam only works if the victim has a good insurance plan which large fleets almost always have. The scammers also like targeting trucks because large companies usually won’t bother challenging the claim where a private citizen might fight the claim and go to court.

This scam is being considered a major problem by the NICB, not just because of the fraudulent insurance claims being paid out, but also because the tactic is incredibly dangerous; not just to the scammer, but to the truck driver and to all of the other cars sharing the road.

The scammers are actually taking it even further in a step that takes the scam from stupid, selfish, and dangerous to downright despicable. They’re filling their cars with unwilling and unknowing passengers. They will often pick up day laborers and tell them that they are driving them to a job site. The workers, who have no idea what’s going on, are there to increase the amount that the scammer can claim in damages from the insurance company. After the accident, they are sent home and the scammer will claim to be filing damages on their behalf, but when the check comes they keep all of the money for themselves.

You can protect yourself from being the victim of scams like these by practicing safe driving habits and following these steps:

  • Install a forward-facing traffic-cam from as high a vantage point as possible. This way it can never be just your word against theirs; it provides irrefutable proof of what actually happened.
  • Take down the name, ID, and contact information for everyone riding in the car, not just the driver. Sometimes a driver will claim there were additional people in the car to increase the payout.
  • Check both the front and back license plates, write them both down and make sure they’re the same.
  • Take pictures of your vehicle, yourself, the other vehicle, and the occupants of the car. Make sure to document exactly what damage was caused by you and what damage was pre-existing.
  • Always call a police officer to the scene, even when there is only minor damage. Having someone there who can file an official report for what damage was caused in the accident will prevent scammers from claiming serious injury or damage later on.
  • Be wary of any medical or legal service providers who contact you about the crash without you reaching out to them first. Some scammers use this tactic to get your personal information.
  • Call the National Insurance Crime Bureau if you suspect a scam at 1-800-835-6422 (24 hours a day, seven days a week). Give license plate number, location of the accident, people involved, why you think this was a fraud, and as many other details as possible.


Next Story: Today Only: Tell The FMCSA What They’re Doing Wrong (Or Right)

Source: fleetowner, insurancefraud

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48 comments. Add a comment.

  1. fireant says

    This is an excellent article by pointing this out to our truck drivers. Hard to believe people would be so selfish to force an accident with a 80,000 lb truck at any speed but when greed sets in nowadays some people will do anything for a dollar. Getting the word out and showing examples of how to avoid such crashes is a thumbs up for drivers. Thank you to all truck drivers that drive safe and keep bringing our goods to us, your valuable and appreciated.

    • John says

      A lot of people are opportunists. They look for situations that can make them money. They see a big company like a trucking company with lot’s of potential for making money. They see a company that would prefer making a settlement then having to spend even more money fighting it in the courts. In fact most big trucking companies have such a high deductible that they most certainly end up paying for it anyway. Its just easier to right a check then fight for what is right.
      The end result is people knowing they can work the system to their favor.

  2. steve says

    Had this happen to me in Charlotte. 3 undocumented in a car cut me off. Slammed on brakes and I nailed them. They refused treatment at scene. After cops left I videoed them pushing the car out of the way. 1 week later they had an attorney. I sent my insurance company the video. They didn’t get a dime

    • Daniel R Kupke Sr says

      Thats right folks !!! All it takes is a camera !! For $39 u can buy a windshield cam on Ebay !!! It’s HEAP CHEAP INSURANCE !!! N thats all it takes to prove what happenned !! I have 2 and I bought a bigger card to put in them so they collect data on a longer time span !! They r on 24/7 n protect me n the rig at all times ?? Sleeping Driveing inside the truck stop n some-one hits u n tries to run ect ect ?? Theft ?? Think about it !!!

  3. Blain henry says

    WOW. People have finally figured this out. This isn,t anything new its been happening in newyork for years now. 1 guy finally got caught after 37 accidents. His scam was hitting the truck and asking for cash on the spot or calling the company for a cash settlement and help them out. I personnally had a accident were it wasnt my fault and they insurance company tried getting$3500 out of me when there driver was fined for it

  4. hubcityscoot says

    A couple years ago I got a call from cop in Baton Rouge about a hit and run where I supposed to have hit a little old lady with her grand kids in the car with her. Even though she got my tag, tractor color, trailer color, my race, and a few other details wrong (I mean really wrong) my insurance company still opted to pay out about 6 grand. I now have a small 4 channel home security DVR system on my truck. Got DVR, 3 cameras, and an inverter off ebay for less than $200. I now record forward facing and both side view backwards facing on a DVR that will hold about a months worth of video. Invest in more than just the one forward facing camera. Had a friend get his trailer hit at the bumper while driving in I10 in New Orleans. Would have gotten scammed but a witness saw it.

  5. John says

    Actually this happened to me many years ago. I was in a traffic jam in New Jersey and we were creeping along and a guy basically drove into the side of my steer tire and then drove up to a cop dealing with the cause of the traffic jam and said I hit him. I was hounded by his lawyer for a week and so I talked to my company and they made some calls and told me I should never hear from those people again. I suspect they simply paid him off. Frankly I never understood why anyone merging into traffic should have the right away? Someone in law enforcement needs to understand merging as do many motorists. If I am already on the interstate or divided highway. I should not even have to change lanes or move over to avoid a accident with merging traffic. Its the merging traffic responsibility to avoid me and the rest of the traffic and too merge safely. Lot’s of people seem to think that your supposed to make room for them. Maybe the fact much of America never properly teaches new drivers how to merge creates all these accidents and incorrect assumptions of how merging into traffic works?

    • Ben says

      People should be punished, severely, for not excellerating to traffic speed. If you are too timid to go 60 or 70MPH, stay off the freakin’ road. I’ve had to deal with idiots, usually in four-wheelers that can easily get out of the way, getting in front of me going 20-30 miles slower and then gradually gaining speed. I usually give them some air horn. I’ve even gotten over for people and still had them get in front of me. I hate the suburbs. We should tear them all down. They’re ugly as hell and traffic is lawless. They’re a perfect picture of what is wrong with America. Selfishness.

      In Russia, almost all motorists have dashcams in their cars. I think it’s an insurance requirement. We should make it a law that all vehicles have dashcams installed. This would cut down on this reckless fraud and there would be many perspectives of an accident if there was a rolling camera in every vehicle.

  6. Dennis says

    Had a fellow company trucker start to pull away from a traffic light after it turned green and an older couple in front of him slammed on the brakes so he could hit them. He and the police officer heard them both say they “needed the money”!! I think if the trucking companies could sue the lawyers who sue them frivolously,you’d see a lot less commercials about how to sue a trucking company if you were injured by a truck.

  7. steve says

    “End-of-Days” are coming….no one can make a living accept those who cheat, steal, and scam. Pretty so the middle class will be hired exclusively to drive trucks through to rich persons homes and drop off 80K # of groceries for the year, so the other employees can defend the properties; other ex employedon middle class people.

    Truck drivers move all products, have a tough job, whether they “like to drive” or not…but are paid like ‘kids out of high school’, flipping hamburgers. Honestly…the pay is about the same…and hasn’t changed since the late 70’s.

    America is doomed.

  8. Mark says

    I agree with this. I installed a forward looking dash cam in my truck. recently, a driver hit my truck and tried to claim that I left my lane and struck him. The camera showed that he actually left his lane and struck me. My insurance company is going after him for full payment for damagages and loss of wages

  9. ben says

    If there weren’t billboards everywhere with another sleazebag attorney saying you been hit
    By a big truck ill get you big bucks.also tv commercials constantly on the low information
    Voter channels il get 375,000 this is encouragement to cause A crash purposely
    unknowing idiots don’t think they will die in the process

  10. Terry norsworthy says

    This has been on my mind the past few weeks. And then I read this, humm, must be a sign from above. Look out. I’ll be goin to jail after I punch’em in the face repeatedly and i’m not a road rage nut!

  11. PRP says

    So you’re telling me that in addition to worrying about the Grapevine and Lot Lizards, I have to worry about people throwing themselves in front of the truck to extort money from me???

  12. Dan M says

    I agree with most comments here. Although, most of the time, it turns out to where the truck company doesn’t want to take it to court or fight back. It’s more convenient to just pay the claim and forget about it. A big problem, it goes on the drivers record as being a preventable accident where the driver did not have the vehicle under control. Understand well, for ten years the accident will go on the drivers record as being in a preventable accident. Also, some truck companies will look poorly on a driver even if it says non preventable. It’s a fact, the good truck jobs will then go to some other driver. The truck company follows procedure and files a report with DAC. The driver has no input as to what the truck company then reports to DAC. Welcome to truck driving.

    • Barbara Johnson says

      While you cannot have any control over what a past employer reports on your DAC, you can dispute it. HireRight will investigate your complaint and require the reporting employer to submit documentation to justify what they reported. You can contact HireRight at (800) 400-2761.

  13. carl says

    gee, steve. don’t be so optimistic. the world isn’t ending, it is what you make of it. if you don’t like trucking go to school and do something else.

  14. Ronald Reed says

    This has already happened to me and my wife. We were making a left hand turn when the trailer was going on the curb, i stopped and backed up enough to clear the curb, started forward to complete the turn when my wife said ” here comes a car and it looks like its not slowing down, so i turn and looked out the passenger window and saw to women with there heads down like they were praying. They drove into my drive tires at about 5 to 10 MPH and bounced back in the street about 10 feet from my truck. No airbag released. the light fender and hood had little damage. Their lawyer called me the next morning asking for my insurance. My insurance paid out over $50,000 for personal pain. Nothing but a rip off, my insurance would not listen to me or my wife.

  15. Terry Andersen says

    And if you avoid the accident be careful in Edmonton Alberta Because the cops will charge you when the car blocks your path and then attacks you they charge the person who is having his or her path blocked in Edmonton the four wheeler have the right to block the truck driver path I know I was charged and convicted of assault after the guy in the four wheeler slammed his brakes on in front of me after cutting me off he even stopped 3 time to wait for me catch up so he could do it again ( before any say i should has just pulled off and waited for him to leave you were not there right and there was no were to pull off this was on a city street) his reason for blocking my path was that he passed me and gave lots of room and I just started blowing my air horn for no reason . And the police be leaved that but not that I hit the horn because of the danger he was butting himself his son and my self in.

  16. Helmuth says

    Was in a minor accident. When I told the driver her vehicle would most likely be totaled, she became happy. She also remained in my blind spot for 1/2 a mile.

  17. Paul says

    This is a game that truck drivers are just as happy to play with each other and honest truckers should be just as cautious with other truckers. The pay off for arranging an accident between trucks is vastly more than what it is for just hitting an automobile and truck drivers are just as likely to be corrupt as your average auto driver, maybe more. There are some commercial parking lots and diesel stops that are real cesspools for this kind of thing. If it looks bad, it probably is.

  18. Rob says

    There was a case back in the 80s in LA. I was running north on the Golden State and there was a crash involving a car and tanker on the SB side the lot caught fire. I forget how many were killed, but it turned out to be a well organized gang conning new migrants into doing it. I think they all got caught. A recipe for disaster.

  19. Ron says

    Well, it all helps when the Police help in the insurane scam. The Ohio state Highway Patrol wrote a bias accident report from an accdent I was involved in. The car that ht my truck was owned by the state ,and driven by a Ohio state emplyee .He killed his passenger by his neglience,but I lost my CDL The trucking company’s insurance didn’t want to fight for me,just pay-off the claims from the Ohio state employee. That was fraud helped by the Ohio State Highway Patrol manipulating the facts of the accident to cover for the state.

  20. joey says

    Were yall been ? Four wheeler been doing this for a long time now
    Thay been doing b/c thay think the trucking co will pay off the four wheeling driver.
    Well sue the trucking co. And the truck driver gets fired from his or her job. The best way
    I know on how to bust them four wheel’s is to put a dash cam in your semi truck.

  21. Cam says

    All round cameras are the way to go. I had a car pull into my lane and hit the brakes. There were 3 people in the car against one of me. They were lying to the police when I pointed out the cameras. The look on their faces was priceless. The cops watched the video and begain writing them out tickets. My employer said the cameras had just paid for themselves.

  22. says

    You can’t tell me this isn’t WAR. The effects on a drivers mind (PTSD isn’t just in the battlefield, the damn road is a battlefield!!!) putting up with this all day long is mental torture, this is just one of the many reasons I won’t haul the overpopulation waste another item period

  23. says

    Last April a crazy lady didn’t like me doing the speed limit, so she crossed a double yellow, sideswiped me and then drove up a painted median, then changed 2 lanes in an intersection before coming to a stop. There were no witnesses so the insurance company ruled a 50/50 at fault. All I did was drive the speed limit in my own lane. Had to pay half the deductible and now rates have gone up. Then I spent the best $60 of my life and bought a dash-cam on Amazon. I started putting the videos up on YouTube (channel Chris Stephenson) and my own website and have made $30 back from clicking on ads.

    Turning lemons into lemonade I guess.

  24. KM says

    This happened to me driving east of Kansas City. In heavy traffic, an old beaten up pick up truck passed me in the left lane. Everyone was driving about 40 mph. An African American driver. Was driving with a white, older man as a passenger. Just as soon as he got 10 feet in front of truck, he swerved in front of me and hit his brakes. Thing is he disn’t h ave brake lites. I saw smoke coming from his brakes which I knew he had them applied as he crossed in front of me. As soon as he moved in front of me, I slowed down fast. Then I really had to push brakes hard when I saw his smoke. It was intentional. He then headed for the shoulder of road. By then, I was down to 15 mph. As I passed him, he was looking at me and was smiling, calmly sitting there just like he thought he was special. I didn’t hit him, and the only way I could have hit him is if he rammed me. I just kept driving. I had 20 witnesses if I needed them and he knew it too. Whenever I see someone even beginning to enter my lane, I hit brakes hard enough to put a big distance between us. They will have to come to a dead stop in the highway to get hit, but they won’t be cashing in on my driving. Lousy creeps.

  25. John Burleson says

    This is probably redundant, but most of us need to hear it from a couple drivers before we consider it: PUT A CAMERA IN YOUR TRUCK AND RECORD THESE SCAMMING SOBs!! Most of us can read minds, so don’t be afraid to show them the camera, either–even better, get a sticker or two that announce you’re taking pictures, and watch ’em take off!! I carry a small spy camera with me and turn it on whenever I get that prickly-haired feeling. But I’m waiting for some company to come up with a device that shows the dashboard, the side mirrors, the view in the windshield and maybe even the driver and have the power to record for an entire shift (11 hours). Even if it loops after every hour, all you need is the last few minutes. Another good idea is to pay attention to license plate numbers or specific characteristics–it’s kind of interesting when you notice the same car passing you about every 30 minutes. Forward the info to the state police and see how many times you see that car then!

  26. Flower child says

    I bought a dash came the first day I had my truck on the road. Now I drive a company truck for the largest grower of flowers in north America and they said “ahh your just cynical”about the cam!

    OK we will see when one of those poor Cajuns claims to be hurt for life!

  27. Avictim says

    Its not just 4 wheelers that are doing this. Some drivers of big trucks are as well. How do I know this? Well my husband and I are victims of one such truck driver. One who sat, not moving or just barely, in the granny lane of the freeway just over the top of a hill on a dark stretch with no hazard lights flashing, no flairs or triangles to warn traffic. We hit him doing 65 mph, not seeing him until we topped the hill with no time to react, and were lucky to walk away from the accident with our lives. There was a large shoulder, and a closed, but not barricaded, weigh station at the site of the accident, yet he was on the freeway in a traveling lane of traffic. Of course the company (major trucking company) we drove for didnt fight it, but settled with the driver, and completely ruined our case.

    Dont think it is just those pesky 4 wheelers. Protect yourself against unscrupulous truck drivers too, but be prepaired to have your big company settle with them and hang you out to dry, just like they do when its a scam purpetrated by the 4 wheelers. Oh and be ready, even if you manage to successfully fight the ticket for the accident, to have your livelyhood taken away, as you are unable to find driving work for 3 years after the accident. That is what we are dealing with now.

  28. Hollywood tom says

    This is nothing new if you’re just noticing it, you’ve been asleep for years. This was a story 15 years ago nothing has changed. There’s no shortage of people willing to die for a few dollars. In the end you’ll lose the insurance company will pay off the survivors. Thanks to scumbag lawyers who don’t care about fault only that the insurance co. will pay to stay out of court. Welcome to trucking where you’re guilty no matter what.

  29. duane says

    As a driver who tries to do things the right way, you know, Polite and courteous. I have been scammed in NYC, So all I can say is if they mess with me again. Their estate may collect something, but i will hit them soo hard they will be a greasey spot in the highway. Just like the NYC cop who cut me off, i have told everyone i will crush them, then back over them to make sure there is nothing left. oh and i am not stopping, i don’t think i need to tell them why i had to crush them.
    So sick of the insurance crap, like if someone pulls out in front of you and you hit them it is automatically your fault. following too closely? how about ticketing them for failure to yeild rightof way. oh right truckers don’t have a right of way. it is always or fault.

  30. Gio says

    Yeah and buying the dash cams will help protect you. But after all the years of the government passing laws that affect our lives no one is in our corner. I’m so glad if I live long enough that I have 9yrs left on the road. The trucking industry has only gotten worse for drivers. I’ve been trucking off and on a total of 24yrs. I think the cops need to see what we see all day. Very few drivers of cars and pick ups are watching the road. And when did turn signals become optional? It use to be a law. I guess there’s not enough money in it.

  31. pat obrian says

    They don’t care about drivers. This is because insurance is paying out so much they have hit the payout cutoff. Now they want to save that money for themselves because insurance companies are greedy. This is brought to our attention because scamming an insurance company is a serious crime that hurts insurance companies. Who cares that it costs lives and harms drivers lives, careers and financially? It’s all about insurance companies watching their own back. Drivers aren’t important to them but their bottom line is.

  32. Lee says

    A dash cam will pay for itself with one incident, but don’t go on the cheap. Get a good one with customer support. Mine came from and I couldn’t be happier with any purchase.

    This type accident scam has been around for years, sometimes referred to as “Toro e Vaca”.

  33. eric says

    that’s why when im in nj ny ct and someone hits me or says I hit them I just keep rolling. no time for jokers.

  34. Outlaw says

    I ran into one of these scams in Arkansas and it seems to be a regular occurrence during the springtime. My advice is never pay these a–holes a dime; call the highway patrol no matter what!

  35. Shawn says

    Had a person in a POS old minivan tried to claim I swiped him. All he could say in English was ” you buy me new van, new van”. When I told him police coming, he took off. Navajo Express of Denver CO put it on my DAC report as an accident and to this day, still refuses to remove it.

  36. Dawn says

    I felt I saw a car intentionally wreck into two truck drivers one day.
    I didn’t think about it until after the fact but here is what happend
    It was a snowy day, this car kept sliding continously and no one else was really sliding like him.
    Remind you, he wasn’t going fast or I would expect him to slide.
    Then all of a sudden, I see the car neatly slide to the right and in the middle of two tractor trailers.
    I mean neatly by, he literally vered to the right, not slide and got wiggly (best way to describe in words to me??). It was straight vere to the right, catch the one trailer, get into the other trailer and back out. I didn’t know what to do later after the fact. The trucks drove a while before stopping.
    I felt I hsould of called someone but I didn’t. I just hope the truckers didn’t stop so they could talk to each other on CB.
    usually if you slide, you get to the left and rigt and slide, this was a neat vere to the right.

    I forget the day but it’s easily for me to remember if need be.
    If anyone was on 465 South in Indianapolis,IN and a sporty car wrecked into two trailers but not touching your tractors and the car was driveable, let me know. I sure hope you guys did not get into any trouble! I would of stopped but like I said it didn’t dawn on me until later it seemed like it was intentional, then I didn’t know what to do. This happened within the last 2 months on a snowy day.

  37. says

    I would like to know if this has happened to anybody else . I was in allentown PA was making a left hand turn onto auburn Rd off of bison str there are 3 sets of rr tracks and they look mean very elevated so I stopped dead to assess the seen a very newly painted car smashed into my rear tandem. On the side then tried to claim I backed over him .plus he backed up to get behind the stop line.the whole thing looks like I did back into him

  38. Steve L says

    Camera has already saved me once! Guy merging on and slammed right into my passenger side steps! CHP looked at the video and there was no question who was at fault!

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