What does boat insurance cover? – Yachting Monthly

What does boat insurance cover and why do boat owners need it?

first, let’s be clear, unlike vehicle cover in the uk, insurance is not a maritime necessity, writes mike taylor.

Reading: What does boat insurance cover

becomes mandatory when entering most ports, marinas, yacht clubs, etc., and is a legal requirement in most other countries.

Third party coverage will at least cover you when you cause injury or damage to another person or their boat. it’s better to be safe and covered.

When searching for the best boat insurance deal, it is recommended not to apply online; it is much better to speak directly with a specialist.

Also, check that the company is based in the UK, authorized by the Financial Conduct Authority.

So what does boat insurance cover?

Insurance provides protection for the boat as a future investment and also provides coverage when a third party (for example, a crew member) sues you for injury or damage.

however, boat insurance does not cover third party claims if your boat is involved in an accident while being towed on the road.

This should be discussed and arranged through your auto insurer.

the search for maritime insurance has two fundamental criteria; the best value for money and the right cover for your needs, whether you’re cruising inland waterways, coastal cruising, sailing the high seas, long-distance voyages or using your boat in competition.

as simon winter of simon winter marine limited explains: “when we are asked to consider a new policy, it is essential that we clearly understand the condition of the vessel. In most cases, this is achieved by having a specialist with knowledge of the make and type of vessel to be insured carry out a full inspection of the yacht. In addition, it is important that we build a complete picture of the owners’ experience of owning and maintaining the vessel under consideration.”

With the introduction of grp, yacht production volumes have expanded considerably with better build quality.

However, regular care and maintenance is still necessary and insurance companies must be satisfied that owners keep their yachts in good condition.

“When a client contacts us to discuss a new policy, we ask for all the details so we can tailor a policy to meet their requirements and needs,” reveals Tony Pauffley of Coleman Marine.

‘it is good to know if the client has been on the boats for some time and has an idea of ​​the handling and care of the boats’.

“We always encourage boat owners to arrange for an inspection of their boat before seeking shelter,” says Adam Summersby, Area Director, Lifestyle Niche at Towergate.

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‘there are a number of advantages to doing so, as once the survey has been arranged this places a contractual obligation on the surveyor and the report becomes the property of the owners and can be used to obtain property insurance quotes. many insurance companies. suppliers, and offers a useful document in case the boat is put up for sale.’

also, in cases where the survey reveals that the boat has a history of professional maintenance, it gives a strong feeling of confidence to the insurer.

Equally important are areas not covered by insurance, such as erosion corrosion and electrochemical corrosion.

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remember, grp boats left unattended for long periods can deteriorate due to the effects of bad weather where for example prolonged rainwater ingress into the cabin can damage wooden furniture and fittings.

“Understanding the ship and its owner is part of the process,” Pauffley continues. “Our job is to sell a client’s story and insurance requirements to underwriters, thus linking all three components.”

explains summersby: “most insurers have a fairly standard set of questions about boat make, age, value, mooring location, etc. for older boats or boats with unusual or unique features, It is important for the owner to inform their insurer of all the facts. When in doubt, tell us!’

Clearly, maintenance is a vital facet of yacht ownership.

“The owner has a duty of care to keep the boat seaworthy,” says summersby. ‘this requirement may be implicit in certain types of insurance, or expressly stated in the documentation. homeowners should not underestimate the dangers of falling behind on maintenance. most policies may not pay a claim due to lack of yacht maintenance.’

“Surveys are a key element in the way we run our business and are typically conducted every six or seven years, triggered by a schedule in the customer’s policy renewal process,” says pauffley.

‘If the client has kept their record up to date with information about the regular work being done, this will sit well with insurers. keeping the registry up to date is simply good ship ownership management.’

It is also essential to inform the insurance company of any planned long trips.

In addition to providing details of the crew’s experience, most companies want a pacing plan that includes avoiding high-risk areas.

Generally, the insurance community lists all of these areas, which are updated as needed.

Research may reveal a selection of comprehensive insurance offerings, such as an all-risk policy that provides wrap-around protection for your yacht.

Under the category of wear and tear, coverage for loss or damage is provided where only the part that has failed is excluded.

Also, a new-for-old type cover for items less than 10 years old has obvious attractions.

Equally, in circumstances where the damage has been caused by corrosion or electrolysis, coverage will apply excluding only the damaged part, while a particularly attractive option is the agreed value arrangement with a fixed amount paid in installments. case of total loss.

for racing enthusiasts, no matter the size of the yacht or the course to be covered, club regattas can also be included.

Common claims include fire damage, theft of personal items, and collision while at anchor.

Emergency assistance and towing cover can be included as standard for claims up to £10,000, all of which are particularly attractive propositions when considering insurance settlements.

Some clubs recommend that owners have a signed personal liability statement as part of their insurance certification.

Boat owners using club moorings are often required to have a valid certificate of insurance for their boats; in the case of the royal southern yacht club, it must be for a sum of at least 3 million pounds sterling.

many clubs do not accept responsibility for loss or damage to members’ boats, equipment or belongings while on club premises or premises.

Club members should also ensure they have sufficient insurance to cover loss or damage to other members’ boats, equipment and belongings while on club premises and for use of the facilities in conjunction to the club water.

See also: Homeowners Insurance Rates by State for 2022 | Bankrate

Knowing what is and is not covered in your yacht insurance is vital for all cruising sailors, especially when the worst happens.

When you’re putting together a new cover, it’s best to apply a certain degree of logic; identify where the boat is kept, the type of boat you are insuring, and list the important things you need to cover, as well as your own experience, and use the information to go shopping. could reveal some interesting results.

rupert smalley case study: stressful process

rupert smalley and his wife are experienced sailors and own the famous 28 laser flying fish off howards’ way.

regularly took part in the wednesday night regattas organized by the hamble river yacht club along with other inshore and offshore events.

Their accident occurred when they were on starboard tack, they became aware of the approach of a beneteau larger than 40 feet and immediately took steps to avoid the collision.

However, the beneteau’s bow still managed to collide with the flying fish, piercing it in the port fin below the waterline. Immediately, the water began to enter.

The little ones sprang into action, turning around and heading back to the mouth of the River Hamble. they were rescued by a passing motorboat, exiting their rapidly sinking yacht.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency was called, along with the Hamble Lifeboat.

then followed six frustrating months of wrangling with their insurance company to get proof that they were right.

This involved investigating the services of a maritime solicitor with a view to possible legal action.

The insurance claim was eventually settled and settled, allowing the pequenos to purchase the wreck from the insurance company and, at additional expense, rebuild the boat.

rupert recalls, “one feeling that hasn’t diminished is the anxiety we felt after our yacht sank, along with our sense of stress from dealing with the loss.”

graham nixon case study: boat racing accident claim

graham nixon is a well known sailor on the solent who was active in irc regattas with the royal ocean racing club and the royal southern yacht club.

“In 2011 I was running a race on the Solent,” recalls Graham. conditions were sunny and breezy with a light wind of 16 knots. I was approaching the windward mark on the starboard side, when I noticed another yacht, already around the mark, heading directly towards me on the port side, with her crew preoccupied with raising the spinnaker. my crew was sitting on the starboard side with their legs dangling over the edge. they realized the impending danger and began shouting at the other boat. but instead of taking steps to avoid it, the helmsman changed course and headed straight for us. The crew immediately got up as their legs were in danger of serious injury while I was turning to avoid injury to my crew.”

in the event that graham’s yacht was still severely damaged with struts ripped out along the port side and pulpit.

graham immediately instructed the yacht to be taken apart and then taken back to cowes for repairs.

“The protest committee exonerated us and our insurer, Noble Marine, handled all the negotiations with the other ship’s insurer, and paid all the repairs,” Graham recalls gratefully.

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