Insights into boat insurance

The scenario

Holidays are here and you’ve headed to the northern coast of NSW with the family for a week of camping, sightseeing and fishing in your new 4.5m plate alloy centre console.

Those new Shimano Stella reels and Terez spinning rods you also bought are going to work their magic – or at least they were going to until you came back to camp on the first day to find they, along with all your lures, knives, landing nets and other gear, had been taken from your boat. You think they may be included in your boat insurance cover, but are they?

The answer

If your insurance is with Nautilus Marine and the gear was locked in the rod locker running down the side of your boat, then you most likely are covered. However, if the rods and other gear had been left sitting exposed and unsecured in your open boat, then probably not. The key here is the way and ease in which your prized gear was stolen – the phrase ‘violent and forcible removal’ is a determining factor.

If the thieves levered locks open to get access to the contents of the locked rod locker, that would most likely would constitute violent and forcible removal. If the thieves simply had to reach into the boat and take them, then regrettably, but very clearly, it was a very foreseeable theft. Anything in between those two extremes becomes a matter for individual assessment.

The take-away message from this is to always secure the equipment in your boat. A length of plastic-covered chain or wire, a secure padlock and one or two turns around an internal transom support or other part of the boat’s structure – even just a good-quality padlock on your foredeck locker – will all count in your favour at claim time. As with all insurance policies, always check your product disclosure document and if you have a query, ask for clarification.

If you need further information, you can contact Nautilus Marine Insurance on 1300 780 533 for any boat insurance requirements.

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