At the end of 2011, there were 13,375 boats registered in Hawaii, but many of these watercraft were not covered by boat insurance. Although boating can be a fun and relaxing pastime for Hawaiians, it does involve a few hazards that can be quite expensive. An accident can end up costing you thousands of dollars if you are not covered by boat insurance. Whether you prefer spending quiet weekends on Lake Wilson in your fishing boat, cruising the Pacific Ocean on your yacht, or towing water-skiers behind your motorboat at Koko Marina, you may want to compare boat insurance quotes in Hawaii before you venture back out on the water.
2011 HI Boating Accident Statistics
- In 2011, 17 boating accidents were reported in Hawaii.
- These accidents resulted in 1 injury and 6 fatalities, as well as $1,857,400 in damages.
- That is an average of about $109,260 per accident.
- Hawaii’s boating accident fatality rate is 44.9 deaths per 100,000 registered boats, which is significantly higher than the national rate of 6.2.
Leading Causes of Boating Accidents and Injuries in HI
- Person struck by propeller
- Collision with another vessel
- Falls overboard
Why Should Residents of Hawaii Purchase Boat Insurance?
Boating laws and regulations are enforced by the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources. In this state, you must be at least 15 years old to operate a power boat. Additionally, if the boat has a motor that is at least 10 horsepower, all operators are required to have completed a NASBLA-approved boater safety education course and to have their certificate of completion with them while out on the water.
Boat insurance, however, is not required by law in Hawaii. Because of this, many residents feel that this coverage is not very important or that forgoing coverage is a smart way to save money. Nevertheless, in the event of a boating accident, the costs can sometimes be excessively high, particularly if you are responsible for property damage or bodily injuries to a third party. Even worse, if you are responsible for an accident that results in a fatality and you are uninsured, you may incur unmanageable financial losses from which you will be unable to recover.
Though your homeowners insurance may provide a measure of coverage in such an unfortunate event, this coverage is usually very limited. Only a boat insurance policy can fully safeguard you against the many different types of expenses associated with boating accidents.
What Kinds of Coverage Does Boat Insurance Provide?
Boat insurance offers Hawaii residents a number of coverage options. Some of these options may be included with a basic policy, while others will need to be purchased as additional endorsements. The options you can expect to find include:
- Liability insurance: This is the most important aspect of boat insurance and will come standard with all policies. It is designed to provide compensation to third parties who have suffered personal injury or property damage as a result of a boating accident for which you are responsible. Also included with this coverage are any associated court costs and legal fees you accrue in your defense, up to your coverage limit.
- Collision insurance: This is designed to compensate you for collision-related damages to your boat, regardless of fault. This includes coverage for collisions with other vessels as well as with stationary objects such as docks and boulders.
- Comprehensive insurance: This is designed to compensate you for non-collision-related loss or damage to your boat. This typically includes coverage for such events as fire, falling objects, vandalism and theft.
- Medical expenses insurance: This is designed to cover medical costs for you and your passengers for medical treatment for injuries incurred in a boating accident, regardless of fault.
- Uninsured/underinsured boaters insurance: This is designed to compensate you if a third-party boater causes you to sustain personal injury or property damage and is unable to cover the associated costs because of a lack of coverage. Boat insurance is not required in Hawaii, so this coverage is strongly advised.
- Personal property insurance: If you keep a lot of expensive equipment on your boat, you may want to include this coverage. It is designed to compensate you for loss or damage to such things as tools, fishing gear, navigation devices and safety equipment if the damage is caused by a covered event.
- Fuel spill and wreckage removal insurance: This is designed to cover the costs associated with wreckage cleanup, for which you may be held responsible if you were at fault for a collision on the water.
- Towing and assistance insurance: This is designed to provide coverage against the costs you may incur if your vessel becomes disabled or you need assistance while you are out on the water.
- Trailer insurance: This is designed to compensate you for the cost to repair or replace your boat trailer if it is damaged or destroyed by a covered event.
- Roadside assistance insurance: This is designed to provide you with roadside assistance and the specialized towing that may be needed if you become disabled on the road while towing your vessel.
Are Quotes for Boat Insurance High in Hawaii?
Boat insurance policies can range from $20 to $100 a month, based on a number of considerations. Because most vessel operators in this state will have taken a boater safety course, they can benefit from discounts on their policies, but there are many other factors that will be taken into account by insurance companies. When you request boat insurance quotes in Hawaii, be sure to have the following information:
- The type of boat you own (bass boat, yacht, cabin cruiser, etc.)
- The make, model, and year of your vessel, as well as its purchase price
- The coverage types and amounts that you wish to purchase
- The size of your deductible
- Your driving record and claims history
The only way to know for certain how much an insurance policy will cost is to obtain quotes from at least three insurance providers. That way, you can be sure that the rates you are looking at are reasonable.
Interested in Learning More and Comparing Quotes?
If you are considering purchasing a boat insurance policy in Hawaii, you may want to work with an independent agent in the Trusted Choice® network. These agents can explain your coverage options, answer your insurance-related questions, and assist you with comparison shopping so that you can find a great policy at a competitive rate.
Trusted Choice agents have offices in several locations throughout Hawaii. Contact an agent near you for more information and you can easily start comparing a variety of boat insurance quotes for policies that meet your specific needs.