Ask Chuck the RV Insurance Expert: When Accidents Happen
My college-age son took my trailer out for a weekend with his friends. We’re pleased he has the camping bug like his mom and dad. Unfortunately, when they got to the campground and set up, they forgot to place the stabilizers down in the trailer. When piling in at the end of the night, it tipped over. My son and his friends are okay, but they caused a fair amount of damage to the trailer. Is this covered by insurance?
I’m glad to hear everyone (except the trailer), is okay. Surprisingly, situations such as this are not that uncommon. In the excitement of the moment, it’s easy to forget the little things. Let me stress the importance of making a checklist before and after your trip to remind you of the little details that keep your trips safe.
The good news is because this incident was sudden and accidental (one of the definitions of an accident), you may be covered if you have Comprehensive and Collision coverage on the trailer.
There are two types of insurance commonly associated with travel trailers.
The first is coverage added on to your auto policy. So, you just make a change to your policy that expands your coverage to include trailering your RV. Insurance people usually call this addition an endorsement, or a rider. Usually, this kind of coverage is only in effect when the trailer is actually connected to your car.
The second is a specialized RV policy that covers the trailer and its contents regardless of whether it is connected to your vehicle or standing alone.
It’s important to know the differences between the two. Your insurance company or local agent can help you be sure you have the proper type of insurance for your needs.
When these types of accidents happen, you may damage some of the items you carry with you while on the road. Make sure to account for everything that has been damaged. If you have a specialized RV policy, those damaged items will most likely be covered.
Hopefully your son understands how to avoid these problems in the future. You may want to walk family members through the setup before letting them hit the road with your beloved trailer.
Chuck Mozingo enjoys RVing with his wife, two kids and their dog, Scout. They RV near their hometown of Cleveland, Ohio, along with their favorite spot, Williwaw Campground in Whittier, Alaska. When RVing, Chuck can’t live without his iPod, s’mores and family thumb war tournaments. When he’s not hitting the open road, Chuck is the RV Product Manager for Progressive Insurance, where he has worked for nearly 20 years.