Boaters: Beware of Land Sharks

Winston-Salem, NC 1/1/2009

Keep your boat safe when it's ashore. Boat theft often occurs in the off-season. Once they’re stolen, most boats are not recovered. If you are a boat owner, learn some easy and effective ways to protect your craft from theft.
 
Five tips for storing boats safely
 
Boat Theft Often Occurs in the Off-Season
 
If you’re about to store your boat for the off-season, be sure it’s in a secure location. Many theft cases happen when the boat is ashore.
 
“There are an unbelievable number of cases in which the storage facility says they never received the boat and the insured says that they left the boat in front of the building,” says Gene Robertson, supervisor in ERIE’s Corporate Security. “Many boat owners don’t discover that the boat is missing until they attempt to retrieve it at the start of the new season.”
 
Marine theft is a problem nationwide. From January to May, nearly 2,000 boats were stolen, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB). In 2010, there were more than 6,660 boat theft cases. Less than half of those stolen were recovered.
 
Navigating Safety and Security
 
Whenever you’re storing your boat, the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) recommends obtaining a contract from the storage facility that includes an employee’s signature. Other proactive steps to follow:
 
  1. Mark it: Mark your boat and equipment with the vessel’s Hull Identification Number (HIN). A 12-character serial number helps law enforcement agencies to recover stolen boats and equipment quickly. All motorboats, with very few exceptions, must display the registration number on the forward part of the boat.
  2. Keep records: Place registration and title papers in a safe location other than your boat.
  3. Take video or photographs: Take photos or videotape your boat, equipment and HIN.
  4. Secure the ship: Disable the boat and remove expensive equipment when not in use. When parking a boat on its trailer, use a trailer hitch lock.
  5. Buy insurance: Talk to your insurance agent about purchasing coverage for your boat and personal needs.
 
You should also be cautious when buying a boat. Carefully review the vessel and its ownership paperwork. To avoid problems, be sure to match the HIN listed on the title and registration to the one attached to the boat.
 
For more information about NICB or other fraud prevention tips, visit www.nicb.org. The site includes a printable Marine Identification Checklist and a Boat Theft Brochure.
 
Contact our office at (336)794-2810 to learn more about boat insurance coverage. Erie Insurance’s coverage helps protect your boat, boating equipment and accessories. It also protects you with liability and medical payments coverage.
 

ISU Wilson Insurance - Our Knowledge is Your Best Assurance™.  

View All News Articles

What Our Customers Say!

Linda Welborn, Fletcher Wilson, and the entire staff at Wilson Insurance provided us with creative risk management solutions, found us considerable savings with regard to annual premiums, and exceeded our expectations in every way. They are wonderful folks to work with!

Bowman Gray, Brightleaf Asset Management, President ยท Winston-Salem, North Carolina Brokerage

Read what others have to say.

What's New

Claims and Your Insurance Rates
10/24/2017

When is it time to contact your auto insurance or home insurance agent to file a claim?

You might be thinking, "Whenever my car or house has been damaged, like by an accident, or a disaster." But deciding whether to file a claim can be a complex process. In some cases, a claim may cause an insurance company to raise your rates.  In other instances, a claim could land your name in a database that might make it difficult to get or maintain coverage in the future.  Before you file a claim, make sure you completely understand how it will impact your future premiums and insurability.
 
Claims that spike premiums
 
Certain types of home insurance claims are more likely to trigger an increase in premiums. They include:
 
1. Dog Bites
 
2. Water Damage
 
3. Slip-and-Fall Claims
 
"The whole point of insurance is to make good on a loss, to make individuals whole again," says Claire Wilkinson, the editor of Terms + Conditions, the blog of the New York-based trade group the Insurance Information Institute. However, many people fear that filing insurance claims will cause them to be "blackballed" by insurance companies, resulting in higher premiums, loss of coverage and difficulties obtaining new insurance. And in some cases, they might be right.  Read more here:
Read More »

 

What You Should Know About Rental Car Insurance
8/1/2017
There are some very serious contractual gaps in coverage for rental vehicles. Even if you purchase their Collision Damage or Physical/ Loss Damage Waivers, many rental car contracts exclude the following:
  • Theft of the Vehicle
  • Tolling, or Turning the Vehicle Over
  • Lease Gap coverage
  • Loss of Use
  • Glass, Tire and Undercarriage Damage
  • Animal Collision
  • Flood and Hail Damage
  • Damage above the Windshield
  • Individuals who rent personal vehicles for extended periods and do not have a Personal Auto policy in force
  • Drivers who rent, and do not own another vehicle insured elsewhere, need to be expecially careful here
Read More »

 

5 Ways to Control Rising Homeowners Insurance Premiums
6/10/2017
Just as with real estate values, location rules when it comes to homeowners insurance costs. According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, the average annual U.S. premium was $842 in 2015, the most recent year for which figures are available. Floridians paid the highest rates, averaging $1,534 a year, while at the opposite end of the spectrum, homeowners in Idaho paid $422.  North Carolina residents averaged $664 per year. 
 
Fortunately, you can take several steps to bring down the cost of your own homeowners policy, short of packing up and moving:
Read More »