Insurance Whilst Trailing

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Insurance Whilst Trailing

Postby David Peck » Fri Mar 08, 2013 5:52 pm

Warning! Insurance for towing

If towing your boat are you properly insured?

I was renewing my car insurance the other day and asked for them to confirm I was covered for towing. I was told yes, I was covered for third party risks on what I was towing and fully comprehensive on the car.

I then happened to mention it was a boat I towed and wished to have it covered for towing abroad. I was then told that they covered caravans and general trailers but not boats or boat trailers, either in the UK or abroad! My car insurance company is LV.

I then contacted my boat insurance company GJW who confirmed that my boat was insured for trailing in the UK but not abroad. I needed to advise them on any trips abroad for it to be covered. However, they stated that the insurance covered only damage to the boat and/or trailer whilst trailing and did not cover any third party risks. They assumed this was covered by motor insurance.

This implies that if my trailer ran over someone’s foot for example or ran backwards down a hill causing injury or damage I would not be covered.

Have other people checked their insurances to see if they are properly insured, in this respect, for third party risks when towing?

What types of insurance do other people trail their boats with?

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Postby Dennis » Sat Mar 09, 2013 12:09 pm

Hello David

I have just checked my policies.

Boat: "Cover for accidental loss or damage to your craft whilst it is in transit but excluding any liability to third parties."

When I took out the boat insurance the standard policy only covered UK inland and coastal waters. I told them that I also needed cover for trailer sailing in northern europe. They added 30 days european cover at no extra cost. They were quite happy because I told them exactly what my requirements were.

My car insurance includes third party cover on any trailer whilst attached to the car.

As both car and boat are with the same insurance company (Saga) there should not be too much hassle if I have to make a claim.
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Dennis

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Postby David Peck » Sat Mar 09, 2013 9:19 pm

Hello Dennis,

Thanks for your reply and information regarding your own insurance. Clearly you are covered for third party towing liabilities with your boat and trailer.

I have since phoned my car insurance company again on a different telephone number (different section) and asked if I was covered for towing a boat. Their reply was yes, for third party cover only. I then explained that I had previously been told it did not apply to boats or boat trailers. This then set of a lengthy meeting amongst their staff who finally came back to confirm it was covered.

I asked for written confirmation and was told it was covered in my document under the following clause referring to section 3 “liability to other people:” “In section 3 of your document of insurance it includes a trailer, caravan or broken-down motor vehicle while they are attached to your car for towing.”

Clearly one group is interpreting it literally as just a trailer (conventional type) and only a caravan or another car, whilst another group is interpreting it more broadly to cover anything towed!

Needless to say I’m writing to them to ask for written confirmation just to be on the safe side.

I apologise for the rambling reply and causing any undue alarm.

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Postby David Peck » Tue Mar 12, 2013 8:06 pm

Warning! Insurance for towing

Further to my post above, I have now had a written reply from my car insurance company LV (Liverpool Victoria) stating that I am definitely not covered for any third party liability caused by towing a boat.

I recommend that other people who tow their boats check their insurance policies out carefully and get confirmation in writing, if necessary, that they are covered at least for any third party liability caused through towing their boat. Other Insurance companies may adopt a similar policy to LV.

Needless to say I’m starting to get a bit fed up with trailer sailing!:mad:

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Postby Dennis » Wed Mar 13, 2013 10:54 am

David Peck wrote:Warning! Insurance for towing

Further to my post above, I have now had a written reply from my car insurance company LV (Liverpool Victoria) stating that I am definitely not covered for any third party liability caused by towing a boat.




Hello David

I am amazed by the response you have received from LV.

If this were generally the case there would be hundreds of thousands of uninsured caravans/trailers on the road. I do not think the law would allow this.

I have checked my caravan insurance (Caravan Club) and it is exactly the same as my boat insurance (Saga), no third part liability while the caravan is being towed, this is provided by the car insurance.

I dug out my car insurance policy booklet (Saga also) and I quote:

"This policy covers you for all amounts which you have to pay as a result of an accident involving your vehicle, or trailer or caravan being towed by your vehicle ...."

I have used a number of different car insurers over the years and this has always been the case.

I have also just done a quick check on Google re insurance whilst trailing. Even the ABI (Association of British Insurers) say that your car third party liablity extends to the trailer whilst it is being towed.

I think you should be able to easily gather sufficient evidence to give give to LV. I suspect whoever replied to you (at LV) simply got it wrong. :eek:
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Postby David Peck » Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:53 pm

Hello Dennis,

Thanks for your support in this matter.

My insurance policy booklet similarly states that it ” includes a trailer, caravan or broken-down motor vehicle while they are attached to your car for towing” are covered for liability to other people. Not covered are “loss or damage to any trailer, caravan or vehicle (or their contents) whilst being towed by or attached to any car which is covered by this section.”

The problem arises from the fact that LV does not appear to include a boat being towed as part of the aforementioned list (i.e. trailer, caravan or broken down vehicle).

The relevant part of the reply I received from LV was as follows:

“I can confirm that your vehicle is still covered when towing a boat however the boat and the boat tow are not covered by us and are excluded from the list in your document of insurance.”

As a result I sent the following reply back to LV:

“Thank you for your reply,

However, I’m not sure that I fully understand what you are implying in your reply!

You state that my vehicle is still covered if I’m towing a boat but the boat and boat tow are not covered for third party liability? However a trailer, a caravan and another car being towed are covered for third party liability. This implies that what is on the trailer can affect the insurance. For example if you carry a load of bricks on that trailer it is covered but if you put a boat on that same trailer on another day it is not covered?

Put simply,

1. If I run over someone’s foot with my CAR’S wheel while towing a boat I’m covered for third party liability.
2. If I run over someone’s foot with a trailer’s wheel, caravan wheel or another car’s wheel that I’m towing I’m covered for third party liability.
3. If I run over someone’s foot with my BOAT TRAILER’S wheel then I would NOT be covered for third party liability!

Can you please put this to your legal experts to confirm that my understanding of your insurance coverage is correct.

I apologise for pressing this point further but with so many differing answers from your staff, I need to have it properly clarified.”


I have not had a reply to the above yet but I hope I have made the point clear?

As you have implied, if LV are interpreting the towed list literally, as appears at present, then it really could be serious for others who are towing boats, horse boxes etc., especially if other insurance companies are following a similar line.

After receiving that reply from LV, I phoned them again and asked for the manager of the department to confirm it. Although I did not manage speak to the manager directly the contact came back after a time and said that the manager had confirmed the statement.

What is your understanding of their reply? Certainly their verbal replies were clear in that towed boats were not covered for any third party risk but caravans, trailers (ordinary) or broken down towed cars were. Perhaps I will try to contact the FSA or the ABI to get their opinion. Otherwise I’m going to have to quickly start looking for alternative insurance.

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Postby Ru88ell » Wed Mar 13, 2013 6:20 pm

Mmmm. My towcar is insured through LV too. :(
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Postby Dennis » Wed Mar 13, 2013 6:23 pm

David Peck wrote:The relevant part of the reply I received from LV was as follows:

“I can confirm that your vehicle is still covered when towing a boat however the boat and the boat tow are not covered by us and are excluded from the list in your document of insurance.”



Hello David

I see your problem, LV apparantly do not regard a boat trailer as being a trailer. :confused:

Unless you have a particular reason for staying with LV I would move to a different company. Because we have more than one policy with them, SAGA price match. On renewall I simply use a comparason site to get the lowest quote, one phone call to SAGA and they always beat the lowest quote by £1.

Having both the boat and the car comprehensively insured with the same company hopefully would reduce the hassle in the event of a claim.

Snake oil salesman!!!!!! :p
Cheers

Dennis

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Postby David Peck » Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:08 am

Hello Dennis, Russell and All,

I have now received a reply from LV to my last email I sent them (shown above) and it is good news (common sense has prevailed at last) and confirms a policy that hopefully, all other insurance companies are adhering to. Their reply states the following:

“Thank you for your email.

I can clarify that under your car insurance you are covered to tow a trailer, i.e. box/car/boat/horse. You are covered third party liabilities should the trailer hit a third party, their vehicle or their property, but does not cover the trailer or the trailer contents. The trailer and its contents need to be insured separately.

I think the confusion has come about, as a insurance company we do insure, caravans, certain trailers separately, but we do not cover boats as this is marine insurance.

To clarify, should you be towing a boat on a boat trailer and the trailer became detached and hit another car, then knocks down a fence and run's over somebody's foot, we will cover any damage the boat trailer has done, should the boat be damaged as well or the trailer these items are not covered as they need to be insured separately. (I would hope that this scenario would ever happen!)

I hope that this clarifies your query now.”



Their reply is going into storage in a secure safe deposit box with armed guards!!:)

Fortunately that now saves me (and Russell) the hassle of having to look for alternative insurance. I think a short course to employees on their company’s insurance policies would not come amiss.

So now I can get back to working on boats!:(

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Postby Dennis » Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:28 pm

Hello David

Excellent :D

I as said in an earlier post, someone at LV simply got it wrong. :eek:

Happy trailer sailing. :)
Cheers

Dennis

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