It can be a thrilling experience to get out and experience nature in an off-road vehicle. But off-road vehicles can also be extremely dangerous, accounting for hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries each year. If you're the owner of an ATV or UTV, it's important to be sure you're properly covered to protect yourself, others and your vehicle from loss or damage.
Here's why you should get covered, and types of coverage you should consider:
- It's required: Many states require basic liability insurance for off-road vehicles if you want to use them in certain areas, like national parks or state-owned property. Check your state requirements to find out what type of policy you need.
- You could be liable: If someone is injured using your ATV, you may be liable, even if you didn't give them permission to use it. For an ATV/UTV owner, a strong liability policy is a must.
- You're probably not already covered: It's unlikely that your home or auto insurance will fully cover damages related to your ATV or UTV. Make sure you have a policy that specifically covers off-road vehicles, and has the right coverage amounts.
- To protect your vehicle: Off-road vehicles can be extremely expensive these days, often costing just as much as a new vehicle. If yours is damaged, you want to be able to repair or replace it. Similarly, having coverage will protect you if your ATV is damaged or stolen while not in use.
- To protect your gear: If your gear is lost, stolen or damaged, having the right insurance will help you to cover the cost or repair or replacement.
- To cover medical expenses: If you or someone else does get injured while using your ATV, insurance can help cover important medical costs.
- In case others don't have coverage: Just like with auto insurance, having un- /underinsured motorist coverage for your ATV will protect you if an accident is someone else's fault, but they don't have enough insurance to cover the damages.
Using ATVs and UTVs Responsibly
Insurance may not cover damages or injuries if a vehicle is being used improperly when they occur. More importantly, not following safety guidelines and restrictions can greatly increase your risk of being injured in the first place. Some of the most important things to remember when operating an ATV are: always wear a helmet; never drive on paved roads, and use extreme caution when crossing a paved road; and always follow weight and passenger guidelines. Finally, never allow a young person to operate an adult ATV.
For more information about insurance, call or contact Executive Insurance & Financial Services today.