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Top Causes of Boat Damage | SeaLogs

Updated: Mar 22, 2023

It has just been revealed what the top causes of boat damage are, as more boaties take to the water during the summer months, increasing the likelihood of making a claim.

1. Underwater impact damage topped Tower Insurance’s list, accounting for 44.6% of all claims. According to Tower managing director for partnerships Jonathan Beale, underwater impact claims usually involve boats hitting rocks or sandbars. Still, the category also includes crashing into other boats.

“Recently, we’ve had claims for upwards of $80,000 worth of damage, so without insurance, you could be in for a nasty shock,” Beale said. “With underwater impacts accounting for nearly half of all boat claims, we encourage boaties to look at insurance cover that includes third-party damage, so you aren’t caught out with costs to repair someone else’s boat as well as your own. This is especially important in the current inflationary environment, which has increased costs to repair or replace marine assets.”

2. The second most likely cause of boat claims is out-of-water impacts, at 23.6%.

“A common scenario we see is drivers misjudging their turns, causing their boat trailer to collide with the likes of a petrol station bollard or the corner of a building,” Beale said. “We know boaties are always excited to get out there first thing, but if you’re not careful, that morning rush at the gas station to fuel up can really put a damper on the day’s adventure.”

3. More frequent severe weather events caused by climate change have contributed to storm damage, mainly from cyclones, which accounted for 7% of claims over the past 18 months.

4. Damage because of mechanical failure and breakdowns is in fourth place at 5.4%. This is also one of the Coastguard’s leading causes of callouts, accounting for almost a third of all callouts from June 2021 to June 2022.

5. Other reasons for boat claims include theft at 5%, gas leaks at 2.9%, arson at 0.8% and vermin damage at 0.4%.

With a busy summer predicted out on the water, upskill and refresh your knowledge. Review your safety equipment, learn more about navigation and the rules of the road. Document your training, checks, maintenance and trip info in – your safety partner this summer.


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