Charleston, WV, January 11, 2012 --(PR.com
)-- The recent news that West Virginia officials plan to study ways to prevent run-ins between deer and vehicles on the state’s roadways underscores the severity of the problem—and how important it is for motorists where such problems exist to be insured against these events, according to Online Auto Insurance (OAI).
Authorities say the more than a million deer-vehicle collisions nationwide each year result in hundreds of fatalities and billions of dollars in damages. And comprehensive coverage—an optional coverage type—is the only type of protection that will provide compensation for damages from a deer-vehicle collision. In light of that, West Virginians may want to check their policies to see if they are covered and compare multiple auto insurance quotes
online to see how much it would be to add it if they are not.
Nowhere are motorists more likely to experience an unwanted encounter with a deer than in the Mountain State, where recent research by State Farm shows that drivers have a 1-in-53 chance of a deer-related collision. Those are by far the worst odds in the United States.
According to media reports, West Virginia environmental and transportation officials plan to use a $50,000 grant from State Farm to identify the stretches of state highway on which car-animal accidents are most frequent. The next step will be working on a method for reducing crash frequency.
According to state regulators, West Virginia auto insurers paid out more than an estimated $52 million in 2010 to settle claims filed by motorists who collided with deer.
But those figures do not reflect the full economic fallout of such accidents because they focus only on claims paid under the comprehensive portion of insured drivers’ policies, and comprehensive coverage is not required in any state.
While moving on after a deer-vehicle collision is difficult enough for motorists with comprehensive coverage, it’s far worse for those who do not.
The average premium for comprehensive coverage in West Virginia as of 2008 was $167, which was higher than the national average of $133, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
But while paying for comprehensive—which also covers policyholders for losses due to storms, fire and theft, among other things—will cost consumers a bit more each month, it could wind up saving them plenty if they’re unlucky enough to run into a hoofed hazard on the highway.
According to insurance regulators, insurers paid an average of about $2,400 for each deer-vehicle comprehensive claim filed in 2010.
To learn more about this and other coverage issues, readers can go to http://www.onlineautoinsurance.com/quotes/
where they will find informative resource pages and a helpful rate-comparison generator.