A motorcycle is always close to the owner's heart. It is also a significant investment, so protecting it becomes the owner's duty. However, artificial and natural calamities never give any warning before their arrival.
But when such events occur, they devastate the motorcycle and sometimes could take the life of a bike owner. There can be cases of severe damage requiring massive repairs. Or, in some cases, the damage could be beyond repair, leaving you clueless about what to do next. You may not have imagined such a casualty. It's not only deflating emotionally but also leads to commuting issues that you may have to face in public transport due to the loss of your bike. While you may not get that bike, you can at least secure yourself financially.
Yes, buy bike insurance that protects you financially against damages to your motorcycle due to natural calamities. Besides insurance, you can follow some other tips mentioned below to protect your bike like a pro.
How Do Natural Disasters Affect Bike and its Owners?
India is highly vulnerable to extreme climatic events like earthquakes, floods, severe thunderstorms, landslides, hurricanes, and cyclones. When a natural disaster strikes, it doesn't spare anyone, including two-wheelers. So, taking the steps required to protect your bike from natural calamities is imperative.
Ultimate Tips to Protect Your Bike from Natural Calamities
Insure Your Bike with a Comprehensive Policy
Purchasing a bike insurance policy is not only essential but also mandatory according to Indian traffic laws. These laws require having a valid two-wheeler insurance policy while riding a motorcycle. Not possessing valid insurance policy documents while riding can be the reason for a fine or jail term.
However, since the law does not make comprehensive insurance mandatory, many bike owners purchase third-party insurance policies. Third-party two-wheeler insurance does not protect the principal bike or bike owner. It only compensates a third party for any damage caused to their property, person, or vehicle by the insured bike.
Hence, artificial disasters, such as theft, riot, etc., or natural calamities, such as floods, earthquakes, landslide, etc., are not covered by 3rd party insurance policies, which is why intelligent bike owners prefer comprehensive two-wheeler insurance policies. While purchasing a bike insurance policy, you must evaluate its features, coverage amount and terms.
Read the Weather Alert
Although a comprehensive bike insurance policy compensates for any damage caused to an insured bike due to a natural calamity, you must take necessary precautions if you are certain about such an incident.
Nowadays, many weather apps and websites display real-time weather conditions. You can also use weather platforms to get information about cyclones, hurricanes, excessive rain, etc. And earthquake detectors predict the possible location of earthquakes and issue early warnings.
The Government of India often publishes earthquake-related news for the public. Check such news and shift your two-wheeler to a different location if possible.
Get Your Bike Serviced
Natural calamities often cause long-term disruptions, especially in suburban or rural areas. Getting your bike serviced after hearing an early warning is wise. Servicing your bike in advance can help you avoid the hassles of running from pillar to pose after the natural calamity hits.
Check the engine, tyres, clutch, gear, battery, headlight, tail light, spark plug and brakes. Change the brake oil, engine oil, throttle cable and clutch cable if required. A fully serviced bike is less prone to damage than an unserviced bike.
Park Your Two-wheeler in a Safe Location
Irrespective of the amount you spent to purchase the bike or the amount you'd get from a comprehensive bike insurance policy cover, you must protect your bike from a natural calamity. After hearing about an impending natural calamity, the best thing to do is to park your vehicle at a safe location. Keep it in a garage or an enclosed space. If you cannot find a garage, look for a place far away from trees or river banks.
Also, anchor your bike with heavy chains and cover it with a rain cover. Moreover, try coating the metal parts with an anti-rust layer since it protects your bike from corrosion. Keeping your two-wheeler in a safe place before a natural calamity is also important for getting the maximum coverage under a comprehensive bike insurance policy.
If you claim the policy coverage after a natural calamity, your insurer might ask you about the bike's parking location before the catastrophe. The reason is simple - it checks whether you have taken adequate protection to minimise the damage.
Do not Switch on the Ignition If Your Bike is Submerged
Never switch on the ignition unless the water subsides if your bike is submerged. Also, try to avoid heavily inundated areas. Remember, if water spoils the mechanical components of your bike, your insurer may reject the claim, in which case you have to repair it by yourself.
This can set you back by a few thousand, if not more. Before purchasing the policy, read the comprehensive bike insurance policy terms to understand the inclusions and exclusions.
Inform Your Insurer
If a natural calamity hits your bike hard, control your emotions and inform your insurer immediately. Your insurer will likely be flooded with claim requests.
Try to call as early as you can to lodge the claim request. Keep documents like the registration certificate and insurance papers handy since they are necessary to claim the insurance cover.
Include Add-ons to Your Bike Insurance Policy
Add-ons increase the coverage of two-wheeler insurance policies during a natural disaster. These add-ons require paying an additional premium over the regular bike insurance premium. Here are some popular add-ons you may add to your bike insurance policy:
- Engine Protection Cover
A comprehensive two-wheeler insurance policy generally does not cover damages caused to the engine. This add-on can enable you to claim compensation for any damage caused to the engine, including any damage to the hydrostatic lock, lubricating oil or coolant leakage, or loss of any engine part.
- Zero Depreciation Cover
Insurers generally deduct a percentage of your bike value as depreciation. However, you can avoid any depreciation by purchasing the zero-dep add-on.
The points mentioned above can help you protect your bike from natural calamities. Remember to purchase a comprehensive bike insurance policy before hitting the road with your bike.
Read more - 5 Useful Tips to Maintain Your Bike