Total Losses: No Collision Necessary

Before accidents happen, optimize your car insurance with Optiom.

This time around, let’s look at some different types of accidents and work away from the varieties that we’re all too familiar with, like the at-fault collision losses; that’s not the only time a claim can happen! In our last article, we chatted about how life can be stressful, this time, let’s discuss how life can get weird. Collisions remain the number one cause of a vehicle write-off, but they are not the only reason.

First, though, it is important to make clear your primary insurer makes the call on whether to write off a vehicle; Optiom then responds accordingly. This means if you’ve purchased Optiom’s vehicle replacement insurance policy, we respond after the primary insurer.

In the literal sense of a “total loss,” what if your car is just that, totally lost? Here are the stats on vehicle thefts from 2019: Ontario and Alberta were far cries above the rest, with 23,992 and 23,535 stolen vehicles respectively, followed by British Columbia and Quebec with 13,352 and 11,961. Check the link above for the full numbers.

If your vehicle is stolen, several things can happen that lead to a total loss. If the vehicle is recovered and was damaged during the time it was possessed by the thief or not returned in a timely manner, the “write-off” discretion falls to your primary insurer. Where comprehensive coverage applies, Optiom’s vehicle replacement coverage can fill in the remainder to get you a fair return on your lost property.

What about natural disasters? Let’s look at an incredible case study: on June 13th, 2020, the northeastern pocket of Calgary, Alberta, was hammered by a hailstorm; ice the size of pool balls pelted everything in northeastern neighbourhoods, shattering siding, destroying roofs – and annihilating cars. The total: $1.2 billion in damage, making it the fourth-costliest natural disaster in Canadian History, behind the 2016 Fort McMurray wildfires, the 2013 Calgary flood, and the 1998 eastern Canada ice storm. This single storm accounted for over half of all severe weather-caused insured damage in 2020. Body damage and total window replacements for vehicles that were caught in the wrath of this wave were more than enough to write off older vehicles.

Let’s close out with one more case study: Acid?

In British Columbia, a pair of acid spills on a highway near Trail, BC were responsible for just shy of 700 vehicle write-offs. An article by the CBC states that 300 litres of sulfuric acid were spilled causing severe damage to the undercarriages of the vehicles over the course of months, putting them well beyond replacement value. ICBC, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, still have their information page up related to the damage done.

ICBC also filed a lawsuit against the resources company and requested the BC Supreme Court allow them to dispose of 519 vehicles declared total losses from the acid spills.

Keywords: “total” and “losses.” While the insurance company battles over storage costs, residents of Trail and the surrounding area that weren’t fully covered with replacement insurance likely felt the sting and are still feeling that pinch. Whether the cause is above from hail, below from acid, or ‘into’ from a collision, Optiom has you covered.

Right now is the perfect time to turbocharge your car insurance!

Request a no-obligation quote, or quickly find a broker near you.

Right now is the perfect time to turbocharge your car insurance!

Request a no-obligation quote, or quickly find a broker near you.

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