South Africa seems to be plagued by riots and strikes that seem to be happening more and more often. Last night the N2 outside of Somerset West was closed from trucks being set alight. People take their grievances to the streets and protest against wanting an increase in salary, better living conditions, and recently the more violent xenophobic attacks.
Everybody has the right to stand up for what they believe in by attending peaceful protests and marches. But in most cases, it’s just full on mob violence. There is a large element of destruction following these protests, causing major damage to businesses and other private property, such as cars that happen to be en-route.
You may think this will never happen to you, but with the rise in incidents in the country lately, it can happen anywhere. You could even be on holiday somewhere and you’re just in the wrong place at the wrong time.
So, what if your car has been damaged due to a riot or strike? Will you have to pay out for the damages or will the insurance cover the costs? This question more than likely would never have even occurred to you. But in this day and age, it is something you should most definitely consider when getting a quote for car insurance. Ask the Insurer you have chosen if damages from such things as riots are included in the policy.
Sasria, which stands for South African Special Insurance Association, is the underwriter that covers the costs for any damages or loss due to rioting or any other public actions. They are also the only Insurer that covers these types of costs in South Africa.
You won’t be able to get Insurance from Sasria directly, as they are included in Insurance policies from other short-term insurance providers. The cover is simply added into the policy at an additional nominal cost.
You are automatically covered if your car is financed and will continue to provide cover as long as you still have your Insurance policy in place. When your vehicle is financed, it is automatically given comprehensive Insurance cover. The comprehensive coverage includes everything from fire, theft, damages caused by animals, storm and water damage, damages caused by riots or vandalism and even damages caused by earthquakes and explosions. But, if you have paid off your car, the Sasria Insurance may not be included. So, always check with your Insurer, if this is the case.
So, if you are ever in a situation where your car is damaged due to some type of civil unrest, make sure to report the incident to the police. Then make your claim, as you would, through your Insurance provider.
Iol.co.za (23 June 2016): Are sure your car is insured for riots? Retrieve from: https://www.iol.co.za/motoring/industry-news/are-sure-your-car-is-insured-for-riots-2037685
Wheels (27 October 2016): Your car damaged in violent student protests? SA car insurers might not pay out. Retrieve from: https://www.wheels24.co.za/News/Guides_and_Lists/your-car-damaged-in-violent-student-protests-sa-car-insurers-might-not-pay-out-20161027