State-Owned Vehicle Accidents Cost West Virginia $17 Million

December 10, 2009

West Virginia has paid out $17.7 million to resolve more than 5,000 accident claims involving state vehicles during the past five budget years.

That’s one finding from an audit delivered to legislators this week. The audit also cites the lack of a centralized system to track damage to the state fleet.

The Division of Highways had nearly 4,000 of the claims, and accounted for $10 million of the total payouts.

Highways is among 29 agencies where at least one employee had two or more accidents during the period. Auditors found that 14 don’t have policies for handling vehicle accidents. Another five, including Highways, failed to follow their policies for disciplining at-fault drivers.

The report said that better oversight could save the state money.

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