Keep your car safe this hail season
Warm weather is finally here, and you are probably looking forward to barbeques, road trips and enjoying the sunshine. Yet, warmer weather also brings hailstorms.
How is hail formed?
When water droplets are frozen by strong winds, they start to form ice pellets. The ice pellets continue to grow, creating hail. Hail can be as large as a golf ball and can seriously damage your vehicle. It can dent the roof and hood of your car and crack the windshield and windows.
Calgary is the hail capital of Canada and is located in Hailstorm Alley. Hailstorm alley runs from High River to central Alberta and can have over 40 hailstorms a summer.
Staying safe in a hailstorm
In Canada, peak hail season is between May and October. It is important to be aware of steps you can take to stay safe.
- Know when to expect hail by signing up for weather alerts and check Environment Canada forecasts for thunderstorms.
- Find shelter indoors and stay away from windows, skylights, glass doors and make sure to bring your pets inside.
- Stay away from tall objects, such as trees, that could be struck by lightning.
Getting caught in a hailstorm when driving
- Watch out for flooding; hail and rain can block drains and cause flash floods.
- Take shelter in a covered area that is not likely to flood, such as a parkade, gas station, or an underpass if you will not be blocking traffic.
- Use a building for a shield by parking next to it on the opposite side to where the hail is coming from.
- If you cannot find shelter, pull over, stay in your car, and turn your face away from windows.
How to keep your car safe from hail
- Park your car in the garage or invest in a carport.
- Buy a fitted cover so that your car is protected when a hailstorm strikes.
- Inflatable hail protectors are also available. If a storm is coming, inflate the hail protector and put it on the car before the storm hits.
- You can even duct tape together some old blankets to cover your car with.
- If you get caught in a hailstorm away from home or do not have a carport, garage, or car cover, you can use the floor mats, blankets from your emergency kit, or anything else you can find to cover the car and protect it from the hail.
- Review your auto insurance policy to find out if hail damage to your vehicle would be covered.
Will your car insurance cover hail damage?
Whether hail damage to your car will be covered by your insurance depends on the type of insurance you have.
Comprehensive car insurance is optional and covers damage to your vehicle not caused by a collision, such as losses caused by theft, fire, vandalism, and weather. If you have comprehensive coverage for your car, then damage caused by a hailstorm will be covered.
Reach out to your Western Financial Group broker to learn more about adding comprehensive coverage to your insurance.