Is damage from a pothole covered by my car insurance? Yes, but........

Yet another terrible February winter storm in Pittsburgh. The sudden and intense storm that hit Pittsburgh on the afternoon of February 21, 2011 caused icy roads, blizzard like conditions, and wrecked havoc on rush hour commuters, many of whom simply abandoned their vehicles on the side of the road. This storm just seemed odd because just a day earlier the temperature had been unusually warm. Unfortunately, that leads to another affect of winter weather. Repeated freezing and thawing causes pavement to crack and then crumble away as cars drive over it, putting your vehicle at risk of damage from potholes.

So, are potholes covered by insurance?
According to the Insurance Information Institute , it is if you added collision coverage to your auto insurance policy. Damage caused by hitting a pothole is typically covered under collision insurance, however, 28% of drivers opt not to buy collision insurance at all. "Damage to cars due to potholes is covered under the optional collision portion of an auto insurance policy. Coverage for potholes may vary from company to company—for instance, there may be limited coverage for damage to tires if the car itself was not affected by the pothole. This coverage also pays for a collision with another car, object or as a result of flipping over. Collision coverage is generally sold with a deductible of $250 to $1,000—the higher the deductible, the lower the premium."

You can report a pothole in Pittsburgh at this link.

AAA Mid-Atlantic Automotive Services offered this advice in the article "AAA says drivers spend nearly $5 billion per year in pothole damage repairs":
--Keep an eye on traffic patterns. Cars that slow down or move quickly to other lanes may be a sign of major potholes or road damage ahead.
--Beware of snow, ice or water that may be concealing a deep pothole.
--Report major potholes or road damage to your state, or local transportation department
--Avoid swerving. Swerving can cause a loss of vehicle control
--Slow down. Carefully avoid sharp impact with potholes.
--Roll through. Rolling through the pothole is better than braking rapidly.
--Inflate tires properly. Over inflated and under inflated tires increase risk of tire and wheel damage.

More Resources
1. What are potholes?
2. 8 signs your car has pothole damage.
3. Pothole damage and insurance claims.
4. Protect your car from potholes.
5. Cost of pothole repairs.
6. What causes potholes?
7. Basic liability car insurance does not cover potholes.
8. Report a pothole in PA.
9. Who is responsible for pothole damage?
10. Crazy uses for potholes.


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