Bad weather “Elpis”: What does private insurance provide for traffic and damage

The bad weather “Elpis” is evolving and causing malfunctions in the road network. Read what insurance companies cover about traffic in the midst of such phenomena and what happens in the event of frost

The winter we are going through is anything but frugal, proving to be surprising, as it seems determined to get used to extreme weather phenomena that cause joy to children and headaches to adults. In the aftermath of the bad weather “Diomedes”,  informed about how private insurance can protect against personal accidents and damage to your home in case of snow.

Now, on the occasion of the bad weather “Elpis” which, according to meteorologists, will be particularly intense with heavy snowfall, rapid drop in temperature and strong winds in the seas, we examine what is insured against road accidents and vehicle damage. in the midst of such a catastrophe.

Traffic and property damage

Snow and ice on the roads increase the chances of a car accident. The car insurance policies cover the compulsory insurance under Greek law for the civil liability of wheelchair drivers against third parties from accidents caused through their own fault in terms of material damage and bodily injuries.

According to the instructions posted by the Association of Insurance Companies of Greece (EAEE) , in case of accident:

  • notify your insurance company by “accident care” service to get guidance on the required procedures
  • notify the police authority in order for the accident to be addressed and recorded in the incident book by its competent department.
  • complete with the driver of the other vehicle involved the friendly statement, which will facilitate the implementation of the amicable settlement in any case if both insurance companies are involved in it.
  • in case it is not available or you have not contacted the “accident care”, you must notify the accident to your insurance company within eight (8) working days, as provided by law.

It should be noted, however, that in the event of injury or death as a result of an accident, the case may take legal action if a claim for damages is raised for moral damage or mental anguish. In such a case, the voluntary provision of  legal protection covers the insured for court and out-of-court costs including the attorney’s fee, costs and fees before judicial and administrative authorities.

Natural phenomena and the exception of “frost”

The insurance companies offer a number of optional coverages that include theft, fire, damage from terrorist acts, the same damages (mixed) but also the protection in question from natural phenomena . These explicitly include, for almost all contracts, flood, hail, hurricane, blizzard, blizzard, volcanic eruption, earthquake, or other extreme physical disturbance.

Damages due directly or indirectly to weather will often be covered under certain terms and conditions. For some phenomena such as hail, the insured is usually required to present to the Insurer a certificate from the National Meteorological Service (EMY) confirming that they occurred. Then, there are contracts that explicitly state the cases that will be excluded from the compensation, such as damage from flood, storm, thunderstorm, snowstorm or hail if the insured vehicle did not have all its opening parts closed at the time of damage (doors, windows, roofs, etc. .ο.κ.).

An exception that is common to all car insurance policies is frost and mechanical damage or any kind of damage that is directly or indirectly related to it. According to EMY, frost means the drop of air temperature to 0º or lower.

As experienced insurers explain, frost usually results in a curfew and an accident would violate the directive. Respectively, no accident will be covered by non-use of snow chains on road sections that the competent authorities had announced their mandatory use.

Then, mechanical damage due to frost usually occurs through the fault of the driver and these may include damage to the windshield wipers that were not lifted after parking, to the vehicle’s refrigerator due to lack of antifreeze or to the parking brake that was “tied” after parking.

Exception to Roadside Assistance

Unfavorable weather conditions such as snow and frost can “freeze” the extra coverage of roadside assistance . As justified in the special sections of the contracts, when the weather phenomena cause inability to approach the place of immobilization of the insured vehicle, the insurance company has the right to suspend this provision for the period of time when the problem exists in the specific area.

Instructions from the Authorities

With the country in a state of alarm from the bad weather “Elpis”, the Ministry of Civil Protection and the Hellenic Police Headquarters point out the great attention that should be given to the roads but also to avoid unnecessary movements. In fact, on the page of EL.AS, instructions were posted to the drivers for their safe movement, according to which they should:

  • To be informed about the weather and the condition of the road network, if they are going to move.
  • Make sure their vehicle has anti-skid chains.
  • Always use anti-skid chains, where there are special traffic conditions (frost, etc.).
  • Always wear a seat belt.
  • To check the proper operation of their car systems.
  • Make sure they are stocked with enough fuel.
  • Reduce speed and leave enough distance from the vehicle in front to be able to stop safely.
  • Do not brake abruptly because there is a risk of being diverted. They work the same way when they are going to accelerate or turn.
  • Have the headlights on to be more easily perceived, especially where there is not much visibility.
  • Always keep the lights and windshield wipers of your vehicle clean.
  • To drive at low speed to be able to control their vehicle.
  • Be especially careful when crossing bridges, uneven crossings and roads that are not crowded.
  • If driving on a country road, avoid snowy dirt roads.
  • Keep in mind that it may take much longer to immobilize your vehicle when driving on an icy road.

In case of immobilization of the vehicle:

  • Do not try to “gas” to get out of the cage, because the wheels are in danger of penetrating even deeper, especially in very snowy places.
  • Move the wheels left and right a few times to chase the snow off the wheels.
  • Notify the police immediately.
  • Stay in your car and start the engine for 10 minutes per hour, checking that the exhaust is clear of snow.

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