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

New secondary school planned for north Langford

Province announces $18.6 million in funding for site

Change room thief nabbed by West Shore RCMP Bike Unit

Quick-thinking caller leads police to suspect after witnessing theft

Victoria Shamrocks win proves costly

Shamrocks lose Rhys Duch to a season-ending injury

Victoria fulfills period promise with free menstrual products

Tampons, pads and other products available at City Hall and downtown washrooms

PHOTOS: Car Free YYJ entertains the masses in Victoria

Third annual fair where cars are banned goes off without a hitch

WATCH: Barbers battle it out in Victoria

‘Barber Battle’ saw stylists and barbers from across North America go head-to-head

B.C. church’s Pride flag defaced for second time in 12 days

Delta’s Ladner United Church says it will continue to fly the flag for Pride month

Police probe report of shooting as Raptors rally continues

There were reports of a woman being injured at the event that celebrates the team’s NBA title win

Oil and gas sector cautious as deadline on Trans Mountain decision nears

Trudeau government expected to announce whether it will approve pipeline for second time on Tuesday

Skipping school costs a dozen B.C. students chance at a new car

Cowichan’s Jared Lammi showed up and won $5,000 cheque toward vehicle, but he can’t drive

Man suffers burns, dog dies in fire in Nanaimo

Structure burns down on Clifford Road property in Cedar

Province comes through with funding for Charleigh Fales

Lake Cowichan toddler only one in B.C. diagnosed with CLN2 Batten disease

People throwing food at a bear in Fernie alarms conservation groups

“Approaching and feeding bears contributes to habituation,” says conservation group

Feds announce $50M strategy to fight dementia

Emphasis is on prevention and and supporting caregivers

Most Read