Whether you drive a sport boat or a fishing boat, Idaho is full of opportunities for you to enjoy the water. There are more than 140 lakes and rivers in Idaho, and the state has a diverse boating crowd. On a typical weekend, you may find people relaxing on a sailboat, cutting through the water on a racing boat or even paddling a river in a canoe. However you choose to enjoy the water, it's important to have a boat insurance policy in place covering your boat in Idaho. Just like a fire extinguisher, in case of an accident or emergency, it can come in very handy. A local Independent Insurance Agent can get you quotes and help you decide on what coverage is best for your boat.
Boating Statistics in ID
- There were 66 boating accidents in Idaho, along with 11 deaths and 47 injuries.
- Boating accidents in Idaho caused more than $340,000 in property damage.
- Idaho joins other states along the West Coast, along with Alaska and Hawaii, in having the highest fatality rates in the nation for boating.
- In the past four years, there have been more than 300 accidents and more than 50 fatalities in boating accidents.
- The most common watercraft to be involved in an accident is an open motorboat.
Boating is fun; however, it can be a dangerous hobby if you're not responsible and aware of your surroundings at all times. While there is no law mandating a safety course before a person operates a boat, every boat operator should pass a safety course before venturing out on the water. Lifejackets are required for each passenger on a boat, and individuals 14 and under must wear a lifejacket at all times.
What Does Boat Insurance Cover in Idaho?
Boat insurance works much like your typical car insurance policy. A typical boating insurance policy may offer the following types of coverage:
- Bodily injury liability: If you cause an accident that includes injuries and medical care for third parties, this coverage can help protect you from major court costs, legal fees, and extensive payments for medical treatments for victims.
- Property damage liability: If you are at fault for an accident or collision and cause damage to someone's property, this coverage is designed to help pay to repair or replace that property, or to pay for your legal defense if you're sued over property damage.
- Pollution liability: Unfortunately, accidents involving boats can end up spilling fuel and other pollutants into the water. If your boat causes the spill, you could be facing hefty fines to remove the pollutants. This coverage is designed to protect you from having to pay for this removal yourself.
- Wreckage removal: Most waterways require that boat owners remove their damaged boats from the water, even if they have sunk. This can be extremely expensive. With this coverage, you won't have to pay out of pocket for boat removal.
- Collision coverage: Collision damage is designed to cover your boat if a collision damages it.
- Comprehensive coverage: This insurance covers "everything other than collision." Whether it's a docking accident, fire, wind or vandalism, comprehensive insurance can address these damages to your boat.
Additionally, many lenders will require you to carry comprehensive and collision insurance on the boat prior to the purchase, so be sure to ask your lender about insurance requirements before purchasing.
What Types of Boats Does Insurance Cover?
There are many types of boats out on the water, and each owner is different. With that said, there are many different types of boat insurance policies available, including insurance policies for the following types of boats:
- Bass boat
- Fishing boat
- Speed boat
- Sport boat
- Race boat
- Jon boat
- Charter boats
- Commercial boat
With so many different types of boats, it's important to be sure that your chosen insurance policy covers the full value of the boat. If you have a boat not listed in this policy, you can still get insurance on the vessel.
What Factors Influence Your Boat Insurance Quotes?
Boating insurance doesn't have a strict price, as the value of every boat (and its accessories) is different. Many factors contribute to the cost of boat insurance. When deciding to purchase boat coverage in ID, be sure to have the following information ready:
- Make of boat
- Model of boat
- Year built
- Engine size
- Where the boat is stored
- Who will be driving the boat – important if you have friends or relatives who will be using the vessel
- Whether the boat will be used for commercial purposes
- Whether the boat is equipped with any security features
- Your driving record (on and off the water)
- Preferred coverage
- Preferred deductible
Insurance companies consider all of these factors before giving you quotes in order to tailor the quotes to your needs.
How Much Boat Insurance Do You Need to Carry?
When researching how much boat insurance to purchase, you should consider how much risk you are exposing yourself to while boating. A simple slip and fall on your boat could end up costing you thousands of dollars, and a crash with another boat or object in the water can quickly become a large repair bill. It is also common knowledge that high net-worth individuals are more at risk for lawsuits, so getting adequate insurance to cover your assets and financial well-being is important.
Finally, consider an umbrella policy. This type of policy, typically sold in $1 million increments, extends your liability limit. So, for example, if you have $100,000 in liability insurance on your boat and you also purchase a $1 million umbrella policy, your liability insurance limit becomes $1.1 million. This umbrella policy also raises the limits on all your other policies. Since these policies are often very affordable, it may save you money, in the long run, to keep the legal minimum on your liability insurance and carry an umbrella insurance policy as well, instead of having high liability limits on your boat insurance policy.
Are There Discounts Available on Boat Insurance in Idaho?
There are usually discounts available on all insurance types, including boat insurance. Make sure to ask your agent about discounts. These may include, but are not limited to, the following:
- New customer discount
- Loyal customer discount
- Boater safety course discount
- Lay-up discount (If you store your boat during the winter)
- Paid-in-full discount
- Military discount
- Educator discount
- Industry affiliation discount
These are just a few of the discounts available to boat owners looking for boat insurance in ID. Be sure to inquire about all available discounts.
How To Get Boat Insurance in Idaho?
When shopping for boat insurance, it's important to get a policy that has the right amount of protection at the right price. An agent is always available to help you discuss coverage options, answer questions and even help you file a claim.
Contact your local agent to get more information and to get your boat insurance coverage.