An estimated 250,000 cars were destroyed by Hurricane Sandy. Most of the damage occurred from flooding caused by high surf, drenching rain and overflowing rivers. Many of the people who lost their cars were surprised to learn they were not protected under liability coverage. Though mandatory, liability only covers for injury or property damage caused by your driving. Only car owners who carried comprehensive insurance were protected against Hurricane Sandy’s flooding.
Don’t Get Caught Without Comprehensive Car Insurance
Unless you live in a flood plain, most floods catch car owners by surprise. They choose not to carry flood protection for their cars under the belief they live in an area immune from cataclysmic flooding. But as Vermonters learned after Hurricane Irene in 2011 and residents of New York and New Jersey learned after Hurricane Sandy, flooding can occur anywhere at any time.
Comprehensive covers vehicles against all non-collision type damage. This includes hail, hurricanes, earthquakes, tornados, tsunamis, wildfires, lightning, toppling trees and tree limbs, wandering wildlife and, of course, flooding.
If your vehicle is damaged in a flood, comprehensive coverage will pay for all repairs, minus the deductible. If it’s totaled – the cost of repairs exceeds the car’s value – comprehensive insurance will protect you with a check based on the vehicle’s current market value. With this in mind, think twice about comprehensive protection if your car is old and carries little financial worth. If it is totaled in a flood, your deductible may be higher than the actual payout.
With most car insurance packages, you choose the deductible. The higher the deductible the lower the premium. Or vice versa. Contact your auto insurance agent for more information on flood protection for your vehicle.