As Trees Fall Left And Right, Can I Claim Insurance If One Falls & Damages My Car?

It depends.

Cover image via @bernamadotcom (X)

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Unrelenting thunderstorms and recent foul weather in Malaysia have wreaked havoc, causing death and widespread property damage.

Dozens of uprooted trees have left many vehicles damaged.

Earlier this month, a 47-year-old man died after a large tree fell onto his car in Kuala Lumpur.

Similarly, several vehicles were damaged after two uprooted trees fell over them in Penang.

Universiti Malaya suffered more than RM1 million in property damages after uprooted trees fell on vehicles at its campus following a recent thunderstorm that hit several parts of Kuala Lumpur and Petaling Jaya.

According to the public university, 29 vehicles were damaged last Saturday, 25 May.

Firemen in KL attempting to remove a toppled tree that fell and crushed a car during a recent thunderstorm.

Image via @bernamadotcom (X)

The recent spate of severe weather has sent car owners scrambling to check whether their insurance policies protect their vehicles from damage caused by natural disasters

While you cannot legally drive your car or renew your road tax without car insurance in Malaysia, unfortunately, standard car insurance policies typically do not cover damage caused by natural disasters, including floods, windstorms, rainstorms, landslides, subsidence, and other acts of nature.

Although comprehensive car insurance policies offer extensive protection for your vehicle in various situations, they still do not cover damage caused by natural disasters.

That is unless you have paid extra for add-on coverage under your comprehensive insurance.

An uprooted tree fell over a car after a violent thunderstorm.

Image via @bernamadotcom (X)

So, what kind of vehicle coverage to get against natural disasters?

See, while Malaysia has three main types of motor insurance policies β€” namely, third-party insurance cover, third-party fire and theft insurance cover, and comprehensive insurance cover, none of these policies provide coverage for damages to your vehicles caused by natural disasters.

However, there is something called special perils add-on coverage under comprehensive insurance policies that offer protection against damage from natural disasters such as fallen trees and flooding.

Special perils is an add-on feature that provides extra protection against specific risks that are not typically covered by standard policies

If you have paid for the special perils add-on coverage, you are able to file an insurance claim for repairs for damage from falling trees, which are considered acts of nature or convulsions of nature.

While the cost of this special perils add-on coverage varies depending on insurance providers, it is generally inexpensive, typically costing around 0.2% to 0.5% of your car's insured value.

How to claim insurance under special perils?

Try not to start the car's engine or clean your car if it's crushed under a tree or other debris.

Take as many photos and videos as possible to document the damage to your car, including the interior and exterior. After documenting the damage, call your insurance company and tell them what happened.

They will guide you and give you further instructions on what to do.

Contact your insurance provider or agent, and inquire about how to add the special perils add-on coverage to your vehicle insurance policy

Remember, there are two main coverage options: full special perils and limited special perils.

You can choose the one that suits your requirements.

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