Insurance companies refusing home, car insurance near B.C. wildfires | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Insurance companies refusing home, car insurance near B.C. wildfires

Image Credit: ADOBE STOCK

Anyone needing to renew auto or house insurance during an evacuation alert – or sometimes even being within 50 km of an active fire – may have problems buying some types of insurance.

If a home or vehicle is already insured, it’s covered. But buying a new vehicle or home can create problems.

“Given the elevated risk of vehicle damage in areas under fire evacuation alerts or orders, while the alert or order is in place, we do restrict the sale of new optional coverages such as comprehensive and specified perils that cover fire and other losses,” states an email from ICBC.

Comprehensive includes things like coverage for loss or damage caused by fire, lightning, theft, vandalism, malicious mischief, windstorms, earthquakes, hail, impact with animals, missiles, falling or flying objects, riots, civil commotions or rising water, states the ICBC website.

The restriction applies even if you already have comprehensive coverage but are late in renewing your policy.

When it comes to buying a new home, getting any insurance can be even tougher.

“If there is an evacuation alert or order in that area, or a fire within 25 km (as the crow flies) to the home being purchased they would not be able to get insurance and closing date of sale would likely have to be pushed until the fire was out,” states an email from Corinne Johnson, manager of community engagement with Interior Savings.

The restrictive area can be even greater when trying to insure an RV or buying some other types of insurance.

“If you were within 25-50 km (as the crow flies), depending on the insurance carrier, you would not be able to purchase RV, ATV (exception liability), glass, boat, condo, strata, tenant, mobile home, course of construction for new home build, or add or increase any coverages to existing insurance policies (jewelry riders, equipment such as tractors, water damage, increase home value etc) until the fire is deemed out,” she wrote.

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