Do drivers who wear turtlenecks get in more accidents than drivers who don't? What if the theory proved true? Although it would be nice to find out whether this level of minutia affects accurate pricing of risk, when it comes to ratings, this question is not one insurers are asking-yet. But insurers are finding unique ways to price risk-from aggressive braking patterns to career choice. Progressive is one such insurer taking steps toward accuracy, and it's using technology to do so. Most recently, Mayfield Village, Ohio-based Progressive Direct Insurance Co. launched an odometer-reporting, Web-based pilot program in Iowa and Virginia. And, in the summer of 2004, the carrier began piloting a usage-based program in Minnesota called TripSense.Using a device called a TripSensor, which plugs into the ODBII port in newer vehicles, Progressive is collecting driver data in the hopes of creating a win-win for its underwriters and its policyholders.

ELIMINATING THE GUESSWORK

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