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Your Car, Winter Storm Damage, and Insurance Coverage

Your Car, Winter Storm Damage, and Insurance CoverageHarsh winter weather can easily precipitate mishaps on the road. Winter storms and frigid temperatures, often combined, can damage your vehicle in ways that are sometimes unpredictable. It’s important to know what your insurance will cover when disaster strikes.

Some of the ways you may incur damage to your vehicle in the cold winter months include:

  • Another vehicle sideswiped your parked car as it lost control on snowy or icy roads
  • Your car hit a large pothole (sometimes hidden due to snowy conditions)
  • Your car lost control on black ice resulting in a collision
  • Your vehicle’s windshield was not fully cleared of snow or ice resulting in an accident
  • Your vehicle slid down an icy hill and impacted another vehicle
  • Falling ice sliding off a roof, deck or some other elevated structure, damaged your car
  • Your car suffered damage from a tree impact due to strong winds or heavy snow

Once you make it past the drama of the incident, you’re going to want to know: will my car insurance pay for the damage?

This winter weather will likely lead to numerous claims

An example of this was demonstrated in the aftermath of a snowstorm that hit the Cherokee County region in Georgia in December of 2017. In the wake of the storm, the State Insurance Commissioner’s Office anticipated receiving thousands of insurance claims. In the 72 hours after the snow fell, the Sheriff’s Office in Cherokee County reported filing 45 accident reports with a dozen injuries. Those accidents don’t include other single car wrecks where the driver took care of the paperwork.

Insurance coverage

How does car insurance cover common incidents on the roadways, in a driveway, or parked in some other location during snowy, icy, or windy weather?

Collision coverage, which is optional in most policies, will cover repairs for damages due to weather-related incidents. As Penny Gusner, consumer analyst for explains, “If you’re behind the wheel during a snowstorm and slide on ice and crash, then it would be a collision claim for your car’s damages.”

Liability coverage typically covers damage you cause to other vehicles. Comprehensive coverage, optional as well, covers the cost of repairs to your car if it is damaged by ice, icicles, hail, or heavy snow-covered tree branches. Minus your deductible, these coverages will pay out to the actual cash value of your vehicle.

These optional coverages can come in very handy when the unforeseen occurs. They are also relatively affordable considering how much damage they cover. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), the average yearly cost (per 2015 stats) for collision coverage is about $289 – for comprehensive coverage, it is approximately $134.

If you have suffered loss in a car crash through the negligence of another party, you have the right to obtain compensation. At Harris Lowry Manton LLP, our skilled Atlanta car crash lawyers are able to fight vigorously for the damages you are owed. Do not hesitate to call our office in Atlanta at 404-961-7650, or in Savannah at 912-651-9967 to set up a free, no-obligation consultation. You may also fill out our contact form.

Related Content:

Multi-Car Crashes – Causes and Issues of Liability

Winter Weather in Georgia: Driving Tips for Icy Roads

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