By Ashwini Dubey
While Bengaluru as a city is often associated with the pleasant weather owing to the plentiful rainfall it receives, the recent downpour has been anything but pleasant for the city. On the contrary, it has been nothing short of a crippling wave for the city’s people and its infrastructure.
Bengaluru, however, is not the only city to have faced such a calamity. Flooded roads and submerged vehicles are not a rare sight nowadays in Delhi NCR, Mumbai or, for that matter, most cities in India. This kind of natural disaster tends to adversely impact vehicles and their shelf life the most, especially in urban areas.
Monsoon rainfall might bring along an awaited relief from the harsh summers, but excess of rainfall can also prove to be an ordeal for everyday life. Not just the loss of lives and property, they can also be detrimental to your vehicle. Low visibility and bad road conditions can worsen the situation further. This is why a comprehensive motor insurance policy is a must to adequately protect your vehicle. Here’s how motor insurance can come to your rescue in a natural calamity like the recent Bengaluru floods.
Opt for a comprehensive policy
It is always recommended to opt for a comprehensive policy and not just the mandatory third-party cover. The own damage component in the policy shields you from unexpected large expenses that could arise due to flood damage. Since the chances of an accident also shoot up significantly during such times, it is advisable to ensure complete financial protection through a comprehensive cover. The comprehensive policy provides coverage for damages and replacements as per the terms and conditions.
Get necessary add-ons
While a comprehensive policy ensures adequate protection, it is just not enough to cover you during a flood-like situation. Some costs due to water ingress, damage to the engine, hydrostatic lock, etc, which are specific to a disaster like this and are not covered under a standard plan might weigh heavily on your pocket. The best way to secure your and your vehicle’s safety is by opting for appropriate add-ons in your policy. Here are some riders you should consider purchasing:
—Engine protection cover: This is a must-have to protect your engine from liquid damage due to water ingress. This is not covered under a regular policy and an engine breakdown is a likely probability during such a situation. If your vehicle undergoes a hydrostatic lock, this will also be covered under this rider.
—Roadside assistance cover: When stuck in a natural calamity, a vehicle breakdown just adds to your woes. There is a high probability that you might be deserted without any help in sight. By opting for this cover, you can get the pick-up and repair of your vehicle arranged.
—Consumables cover: Since no one knows the duration of such a natural crisis, elongated exposure to water can result in damage to lubricants, engine oil or gearbox, etc. A usual policy doesn’t cover these damages; hence, it is best to opt for consumables cover.
What to remember
—Never try to start your vehicle in a hurry if it breaks down due to water ingression.
—Start the vehicle only after you are sure that the water has receded.
—In case of a breakdown, park your vehicle in a safe and covered area to avoid further damage.
—Informing your insurer right away in case your vehicle breaks down due to the flood is important.
—Lastly, and most importantly, do not forget to abide by traffic rules to make sure your claim is watertight. In case of damage, get your vehicle assessed and inspected as soon as possible. By following these tips, you will have one less thing to worry about in a situation like this.
The author is head, Motor Insurance Renewals, Policybazaar.com. Views are personal