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Ok MNichols. I’ve seen you be dismayed that RRT told you that they don’t carry insurance for your vehicle. If you let a shuttle company drive your vehicle it it exactly the same as giving permission to a friend to drive your vehicle.
Dismayed ? Nope, after leaving us stranded at the ramp on LeadOar twice, I was just pissed, then came the damage which at the time spun me into a dimension of pissed off I had never before experienced, which was rekindled after calling them. I'm not an attorney, but I can tell you what MY attorney said about it.

"When you are a service for hire company, and cause damage in the course or providing said service, your company, and you personally are liable for what your employees (I'm sure in RRT's case they are likely "contractors" and not employees) do. But none the less, it's the "for hire" that makes the difference, when money changes hands it completes a contract, and a contract in place requires a "meeting of the minds" to complete". According to him, at the time, a general liability policy that would have covered the negligence probably wouldn't have cost them more than a couple grand a year. To sue them, especially as the damage happened in CO, and they were based in Vernal UT, would have a cost likely exceeding the damage, so it wouldn't have made any sense to spend 10K to win a 3K lawsuit. They aren't stupid, they know this, and continue to operate the way they have.

Could have been a fast, easy resolution, "Yes Sir, we're sorry that happened, please contact "insert insurance company name here" and they will get it all fixed up. What really was telling, was the phone conversation I had with the owner. All that was stated, was they didn't use our vehicles as a shuttle for their rental business, which was a question I never asked. Not that they didn't cause damage. From the threads here, and tales I've heard from people that have used them previously with no problem, only to take off to a bill for damage they caused, this isn't something new. I'm guessing the BLM got so many complaints that they HAD to do something. Again, I'm guessing, cause the agency (BLM) won't say, and the owner is full of bullshit.

From working with federal managing agencies for over 20 years, both as an employee and as a volunteer, I know a little about SUA's (Special Use Agreements). For one thing, a yearly renewal is just a rubber stamp away, for it not to be "automatically renewed" would be something truly out of the ordinary. This goes for river outfitters, hunting and fishing outfitters, campground operators, right down to a grazing lease on federal lands. IF It was complaints, it had to be more than just a couple or 3. That they would have written off to the "ya can't please all the people all the time" theory

It's especially telling when the company owner posts patent bullshit as a reason in public forums. Top that off with the BLM refusing to state WHY their SUA wasn't renewed. Had I really gave a shit, I suppose I could have made a FOIA request, but truth be told, I just didn't care, and was glad that the agency gave them a wake up call, but it doesn't seem to have done any good based on recent posts.

At the end of the day, they made a lifelong enemy out of me, and a couple others here too, I understand that this issue is discussed on FB and other anti social forums more than one would think. With so many other choices receiving nothing but accolades here, I fail to see why anyone would take a chance with RRT.

My 2 cents, your mileage may vary.
 

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MNichols and anyone else out there that contracts with a shuttle company. Read your contract carefully you will see in the contract that if a accident happens it is going to fall back to your insurance company to pay for damage even in the case of negligence. This is not just RRT.
I think that lots of people assume if a problem occurs the shuttle company has some insurance that will pay for it. That is not the case. I’m sure the people who had problems with the Wild Rivers Shuttle Company in Idaho are finding this out. “Wild Rivers Idaho not Suzanne‘s Wild Rivers in Arizona”
 

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I remember seeing one shuttle company with a discussion about that on their webpage. It was effectively "as far as we can tell there is no such thing as 'shuttle company insurance.'"
But there is such a thing as general liability insurance for a business.
 
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MNichols and anyone else out there that contracts with a shuttle company. Read your contract carefully you will see in the contract that if a accident happens it is going to fall back to your insurance company to pay for damage even in the case of negligence. This is not just RRT.
I think that lots of people assume if a problem occurs the shuttle company has some insurance that will pay for it. That is not the case. I’m sure the people who had problems with the Wild Rivers Shuttle Company in Idaho are finding this out. “Wild Rivers Idaho not Suzanne‘s Wild Rivers in Arizona”
Partly correct, but there are numerous instance in which you cannot contract away liability. No contract can indemnify you against liability for fraud, intentional acts, or gross negligence. And those are determinations made by a court. In the case of minor damage the shuttle companies seem to just take the "so sue me" approach knowing that no one will once they start doing the math. With that said if the damages are high enough you can sure as hell bet that a contingency lawyer will go after them. Say a shuttle driver hits and kills a pedestrian in a car they are shuttling. Then in the course of the investigation it comes out that the driver was partying all night the night before with the owners of the shuttle company. Do you really think that the car owners insurance company is just going to pay the million dollar wrongful death claim? Of course not. The shuttle company would clearly be on the hook and if they don't have a blanket liability insurance policy they will lose everything. Allowing that driver to drive would almost certainly be gross negligence. What if (and this apparently happened during the Snake debaucle) the drivers or owners drive the vehicle 300 extra miles to run some personal errands and total the vehicle? Again its not going to be the owners insurance that pays because its fraudulent to do that and well outside of the scope of the original contract. But at the end of the day the best defense against a lawsuit is being "judgement proof" aka broke as fuck. You can win a big judgement but if the other side has nothing to lose than you will gain nothing but a lawyer bill. This is probably the case with the Idaho shuttle company but probably not the case with RRT. RRT has been is business for a long time and they probably have a lot to lose which is why despite their contract and their protestations they DO in fact have liability insurance that you'll never know about until you sue them. And if they don't ... well now you own a shuttle company. Maybe you'll be better at returning calls than they are.
 

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Don’t want to beat a dead horse plenty of those around here. I’m just hoping to educate consumers of river shuttles that there are financial risks to using their services. Be prepared to shell out your deductible if you carry comprehensive insurance. If you only have liability be prepared to replace your rig. There may be a few instances of out right negligence that happen, maybe MNichols was a victim of it. Wild River Shuttles Idaho looks like for sure. But as cwd24601 correctly points out don’t count on a shuttle company to give up without a fight that will probably be more expensive and time consuming than it’s worth.
Even though some problems happen from time to time. The ability to hire a shuttle sure beats the alternative of spending the time to do it yourself. Been there done that and fried my brain in the desert waiting.
 
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