Does Car Insurance Cover Rain Damage?
The torrential rain that struck Jeddah last week, flooding several parts of the city and sweeping away cars, was the highest-ever recorded rainfall in the province! The heavy downpour caused havoc; social media posts showed people wading through flooded streets, cars floating, ramming into others, and drowning in caved-in roads. Safe to say, the number of flood-hit cars is staggering. Now, as the water subsides, many drivers in Jeddah are wondering if their car insurance will pay to repair rain damage.
The answer: It depends on your insurance coverage. Typically, a comprehensive car insurance policy will cover all repair costs related to natural disasters. On the other hand, other policies won’t cover the damage. Here is what you need to know about compensation and car insurance.
Will my car insurance cover the rain damage?
In 2018, the Saudi Central Bank instructed all insurance companies to give insurance coverage against natural disasters —including rain and floods— for cars that have comprehensive insurance. Accordingly, comprehensive insurance policyholders are eligible to claim compensation from insurance companies.
On the whole, comprehensive insurance pays for the damage done to your car. It includes protection from weather-related damage, like lightning and hail storms.
What does Natural Disasters coverage include?
- Falling Objects — Comprehensive insurance will pay for damages if, say, high winds caused tree branches to fall on your car and cracked your windshield.
- Car–Collsion Damage— If the rainwater sweeps away your car causing it to ram into other cars, comprehensive insurance could also take care of it.
- Rain Damage — Natural Disasters coverage on your comprehensive insurance policy can cover water damage related to rain, flooding, and hail.
- Accidental damage while driving — Heavy rain is a major cause of accidents. Undoubtedly, drivers can lose control of their cars due to hydroplaning and impaired visibility. If you are involved in an accident, comprehensive insurance could cover the damages to your car as well as others.
How do I file a claim for rain damage?
Comprehensive insurance compensation:
- Those affected should contact Najm to prepare a report
- Refer to insurance companies to file a claim for compensation
- For rented cars, compensation is paid to the leasing entity, after which the entity is required to repair the car or compensate for it.
Third-party insurance / uninsured cars:
- Saudi Civil Defense recently launched a website to handle requests. Those affected have to apply with relevant documents via the link https://my.998.gov.sa/damagereport/ without the need to show up in person.
- Required documents: a copy of the national identity, a copy of the car registration (istimara), Address details— the location of the vehicle, and contact numbers.
Mechanism of comprehensive insurance compensation for cars damaged by rain in Jeddah
- If the car is completely damaged, comprehensive insurance pays a compensation amount equal to the value of the vehicle specified by the insured when the insurance policy was purchased.
- Coverage of damages caused by the vehicle to the third party: Comprehensive insurance pays compensation of a maximum of 10 million riyals, to be divided equally between physical and property damages.
How do you prepare your car for heavy rain?
- Park your car in a safe place; to ensure the best protection and minimize damage, it is best to park the car in a garage indoors.
- If it is not possible to park it indoors, consider parking your car on higher ground, away from trees or lampposts.
- Don’t forget to close the sunroof and all car windows.
- Do not leave any of your valuables inside the car.
- Abide by the Civil Defense Civil Defense instructions announced through the various media platforms. Don’t go outside unless necessary, as floods can easily wash away or damage your car.
- Review the car insurance policy and make sure of what it covers and what it excludes.
Enjoy the best protection & buy comprehensive insurance!
All in all, comprehensive insurance may not be legally binding in Saudi Arabia — unless you rent your car! But it is definitely the best type of auto insurance; Because it is the only insurance that includes coverage for damages to your car itself, including natural damage such as torrential rain and hail.
Surely, the best way to buy comprehensive insurance is to compare prices between several insurance companies licensed in Saudi Arabia first. After obtaining offers and quotations from them, make sure of the provisions and coverages of each policy; This way you will find the best insurance options for your needs.