Does auto insurance cover damage caused by potholes?

Auto insurance - car driving toward potholes

This time of the year is notorious for wreaking havoc on pavement, which can be damaging to vehicles.

The weather across many parts of the country has reached the point when potholes are becoming a growing problem, and auto insurance companies are preparing for claims from drivers with damaged vehicles.

Potholes often happen when cracks in pavement fill with water, which then freezes and expands.

According to a recent report from State Farm, the first months of every year are the time in which potholes become more prominent. The temperature fluctuations are behind this trend, as they cause freezing and thawing that lets water slip into road surface cracks, spreading them open, crumbling them and leaving holes behind.

Auto Insurance - Winter weather - car driving - pothole

As this time of year begins yet again, State Farm is hoping to help drivers to avoid having to file auto insurance claims due to damaged vehicles from hitting potholes. The insurer has published a list of tips to help make sure that commutes and road trips remain smoother and safer for the vehicle and everyone inside.

State Farm has released tips for drivers to help avoid the need for auto insurance claims from potholes.

The following are some of the top tips the insurer has recommended to prevent damage from potholes, particularly at this time of year.

  • Keep tires adequately inflated. Under-inflated tires are particularly at risk of damage to tires, rips, and the vehicle’s suspension after hitting a pothole.
  • Slow down. While it’s always recommended that the speed limit play a role in determining how fast to drive, sometimes road conditions require that you slow down in order to travel safely. When potholes are around, you’ll need a bit of extra reaction time so you can keep your eyes on the road, avoid if possible, or at least have a smaller impact if you must hit it.
  • Avoid swerving out of your lane. Swerving around and out of your lane to dodge potholes places drivers at a greater risk of losing control of their vehicles or of colliding with another car, leading to an even larger auto insurance claim and potentially hurting someone.
  • Report new potholes. If you notice a new and particularly dangerous pothole, report it to the city or county transport department so they know it’s there.

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