Traffic speeds slow as the temperature drops and winter begins. Most drivers are cautious on icy roads, which can look dry and secure, but be deceptively slick and dangerous. It’s important to travel carefully to avoid common winter accidents; however, some accidents can’t be prevented, so make sure you’re covered by automobile insurance that will protect you in case those icy roads get the best of you.
Most winter accidents happen when tires lose traction on the road, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle. There are several types of collisions that can result from a vehicle sliding out of control, and specific types of insurance that cover each accident. Consider these common winter accidents and how to protect against them with the right insurance policy.
- Sliding off the road into a ditch – If you happen to lose control of your vehicle and run off the road, your vehicle will probably be the only thing that sustains damage. In this case, Collision Insurance or No-Fault Insurance should cover the cost of repairing the damage to your car.
- Sliding into and damaging property – When icy road conditions send you into a spin, there’s always the chance you’ll hit and damage public or private property. These types of accidents are usually covered under Liability Insurance, but you may have to pay an out-of-pocket deductible before insurance coverage applies.
- Damaging another vehicle – Since stopping distances are longer on icy roads, winter accidents that involve a car rear-ending another vehicle become increasingly common. In these cases, the driver that hits the other car from behind is always at fault, even if the first car stops suddenly. The damage sustained by the front car should be covered by Liability Insurance (or No-Fault Insurance, if mandated by your state), while the damage to the at-fault car would be covered by Collision Insurance.
There are other types of winter auto damage that can occur, including acts of nature such as a frozen tree branch falling on your vehicle. In these cases, Comprehensive Insurance would likely cover the cost of the damage. Keep in mind that insurance policies and incident coverage vary between plans and providers, so speak with an insurance agent to find out exactly what your auto insurance policy covers. Winter accidents can be dangerous, so be especially cautious when driving on icy roads.
Post by Dale Cooper