According to the Federal Highway Administration, the vast majority of weather-related crashes happen on wet roads: 74% on wet pavement and 46% during rainfall. Black ice, surprise snow flurries, low visibility, and freezing temperatures – are these winter driving hazards you’re prepared for? You could easily be the victim of a weather related crash. Even if you’re an experienced winter driver, other drivers may not be. So, before you go dashing through the snow, review your car insurance policy to make sure your coverage and liability limits match your driving needs.
Liability Coverage Limits
Liability insurance pays for bodily injuries or property damage suffered by others when you are at fault in a vehicle accident, and the limit refers to the maximum amount your car insurance company will pay for a claim. As defined by your state, you’re required to carry at least the minimum limits for liability insurance. But are minimum limits enough for you? General rule of thumb is that you should carry liability limits in an amount equal to the value of your personal assets – so consider the value of your home, your car, and your bank account(s).
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Uninsured Motorist Coverage helps cover your costs if you are hit by someone without insurance, or who has minimal coverage. This coverage also protects you in cases of hit and run. The risk of getting hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver may go up as the temperature goes down. If uninsured motorist coverage is option in your state, you may want to consider adding this coverage to your policy.
Comprehensive & Collision Coverage
Have you ever seen tree branches bend and break under the weight of wet snow or ice? Has your car ever surprised you by slipping and sliding on a patch of black ice? Winter driving conditions can be unpredictable, which is why it could be a good idea to consider adding insurance protection that pays for damages to your car too.
Comprehensive Coverage will help pay for your car to be repaired or replaced if it is stolen or damaged in an event other than a collision (like a fire, natural disaster, or contact with an animal). This type of coverage would come in handy if a large tree branch fell onto your insured vehicle or you collided with a deer late one night.
Collision Coverage will help pay for your car to be repaired or replaced if your car hits another object, overturns in an accident, or is hit by a “hit and run” driver. This type of coverage would come in handy if you slid into your mailbox leaving the driveway one icy morning.
Like we said before, winter driving conditions can be unpredictable. Low temperatures could leave you with a dead battery or deflated tire, and the last thing you need during the coming months is to be stranded on the roadside on your way to visit family or friends.
If you’re interested in learning more about adjusting your insurance coverage for the winter season, renewing your policy with a different mix of coverage, or getting a free quote for car insurance, give us a call at 1-877-463-4732 or visit one of our local stores for easy, one-on-one attention.
What a pleasant surprise! Should you get into an accident, WreckCheck is a free smartphone app from the National Associate of Insurance Commissioners that walk you through the process of gathering information you’ll likely need to file a claim with your insurance company and allows you to email the report directly to your insurance agent. It is available for iOS and Android devices, but there’s also a PDF version available for download.