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1320 28th Street West • Billings, MT 59101
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Insuring Your Summertime Toys

July 13, 2012 01:13pm

As Montanans, we consider ourselves fortunate to live in such a beautiful state with so much opportunity for outdoor recreation. We relish in the adventures that can be found each summer along our highways, in our many campgrounds, and on our lakes and rivers.

Our pride in our great state is probably one of the reasons that Montanans enjoy so many summertime recreational vehicles, such as motorcycles, all terrain vehicles, motor homes, personal watercraft, and boats. Before setting off on your summertime adventures, you will no doubt attend to the mechanical needs of your summertime toys by tuning up the engine, having the oil changed, or checking the tires. Did you know that now is also a great time to tune-up your recreational vehicle insurance?

Keep reading for some important information about insurance for all of your seasonal machines, as well as some great safety tips to help you through your outdoor adventures this summer.

What Types of Recreational Vehicles Can You Insure?

Motorcycles/All Terrain Vehicles:

You can purchase coverage for most motorcycles, including:

  • Standard Motorcycles
  • ATVs
  • Cruisers
  • Sport Bikes
  • Dirt Bikes
  • Touring Bikes
  • Mopeds
  • Scooters
  • Custom Motorcycles
  • Classic Motorcycles
  • You can purchase all of the standard automobile coverages for your motorcycle. If you have made any enhancements or added aftermarket parts, you may want to purchase accessory coverage, as well. You can insure your motorcycle or ATV, whether it is driven on- or off-road. However, the vehicle must be street-legal, in order for it to be covered for on-road use.

Boats & Personal Watercraft:

This is the type of policy on which you would insure your boat or jet-pump-driven, personal watercraft (jet ski). Watercraft policies include a variety of coverage options. In addition to medical coverage and coverage for your watercraft, some coverages that might come in handy this summer include:

  • Fishing Equipment Coverage
  • Personal Effects Coverage (for items like cameras, cell phones, clothing, coolers, etc.)
  • On-Road Roadside Assistance
  • On-Water Emergency Towing and Labor
  • Wreckage Removal Coverage
  • Fuel Spill Liability Coverage
  • Water Sports Coverage

Although you are not legally required to insure your boat, you are subject to all of the same risks as when driving an automobile on the street. Fortunately, boat insurance is usually relatively inexpensive.

Motor Homes/Travel Trailers:

You can insure anything from a pop-up tent trailer to a conventional motor home, and we can personalize your policy to reflect your use, whether it is very occasional or you live in the motor home.

The coverages that are available for these types of recreational vehicles are very similar to what you probably carry on your automobile policy. However, most motor home or travel trailer policies offer a special coverage for emergency temporary living expenses, such as hotel expenses, incurred as a result of a covered loss in the insured vehicle.

We know we run the risk of sounding like broken records, but you should purchase insurance for your recreational vehicle even if it is not valuable. You do not have to insure the vehicle for physical damage to gain the benefit of having valuable medical coverage and liability coverage. If you plan to bring your family along, carry passengers, or entertain with your recreational vehicles, you are especially obligated to maintain insurance in the event that others sustain an injury as a result of your recreational vehicle.

Whether your summer pastime is riding a motorcycle, boating, or waterskiing, the injuries that you can sustain if you wreck are far greater than what you are likely to incur in an automobile, where you are belted in, are in an enclosed container, and usually have air bags.

Your summertime toys are called recreational vehicles for a reason. Motorcycles and ATV's are often driven off-road, and boats are used to pull passengers like water-skiers or tubers. They are often operated while on vacation, long distances from home, or on unfamiliar roads or bodies of water. All of these factors may lead to you being distracted or may increase your reaction time.

Just because the law may not require you to carry insurance on your recreational vehicles does not mean that they are not just as dangerous, if not more dangerous, than your automobile. Ensuring that your toys are insured will give you the peace of mind to really relax and have fun this summer.

Darnielle Insurance is available to answer your questions.

We are located at 1320 28th Street West, Billings, MT 59102.

Give us a call at 406-652-4180.

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