Year after year, theft of boats and yachts, as well as a small outboard motor, sterndrives, nautical-technical equipment and accessories, is a large part of the damage that our claims and insurers deal with.
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What requirements does my hull insurer demand preventive anti-theft devices?
Most insurers require additional fuses for outboard motors and boat trailers. The nature and extent of the safety measures can be found in the general insurance conditions for your boat. If you have any questions because the phrasing is not precise or you can not find it, ask the insurer and have the terms confirmed in writing.
Be sure to install the required fuses. For example, if the outboard motor is stolen and the required fuse was not appropriate, because you thought the engine weighs 250 kg and is firmly bolted to the boat, the insurer can refuse the performance and claims settlement.
We have put together for you as a recommendation the ten most important preventive measures to protect your property from boat crime and how to react appropriately in case of theft – because the number of thefts of boats and outboard motors is steadily increasing …
Tip 1: Do not just back up your boat
Secure your boat, and your outboard motor or the Z- also drive, for example, with bolt locks, chains, locks, alarm systems or GPS directional transmitters. Check that the outboard motor can be better protected against removal, e.g., by taking it on board during the decommissioning, by storing it in a hall or the local garage.
If possible, use VDS-approved fuses. Have you ever tried to cut through an ABUS safety padlock with a bolt cutter? We already, unfortunately without success.
Tip 2: Have everything coded
Have the outboard motor and accessories coded by the water police?
Without clear identification and ownership markings on the engines or accessories, it will be more difficult to substantiate the evidence of likely stolen boat engines and accessories. Also, boat engines marked as coded are much less attractive to criminals.
Tip 3: Take pictures
Photos can facilitate a later identification or also the search work of the police.
Take pictures of your boat, equipment and accessories and make a note of all the technical details — data such as manufacturer, engine unit numbers of a boat, engine, nautical and mechanical devices. If necessary, attach your identifiers.
Photos can also serve as evidence of ownership in the event of damage to the insurer.
Tip 4: Save your trailer
Trailer fuses protect against theft.
The boat trailer must be secured against theft using a box lock or equivalent. Also remember that if the container is behind the car, it should be acquired by the vehicle when leaving the vehicle.
It should already have happened that after the break on a motorway service area, only the car was on the parking streaks and the stolen trailer including boat had never again disappeared. Also, clean a boat fuel tank regularly.
Tip 5: Pay attention to the details
These preventive measures should be taken at the yacht’s nautical and technical equipment items:
Look for the durable door, window and hatch hardware, security cylinders on cabin doors and steering wheel locks. Close the cabin and back boxes. Easily remove disassemblable and valuable equipment and leave no valuables on board.
You should know how to maintain the wood on your boat to increase its longevity.
Tip 6: Get advice
How to find the right fuses for marine engines and trailers:
Just ask your boat dealer or repair shop of your choice. Here you will certainly be well advised and will also find the necessary support during installation.
If you can not get on here or if such a contact person is missing, ask your yacht insurance specialist.
Tip 7: Do not hesitate
Very important: Any theft must be reported immediately to the police and the insurer.
The sooner the police can initiate investigations, the higher the chances of success that the thieves will be seized and that they will get back their property.
Tip 8: Read the fine print
What do I have to report to my insurance company and what obligations do I not have to endanger the insurance coverage in the event of a claim?
These obligations can be found in your general insurance conditions and the Insurance Contracts Act (VVG). You should follow the instructions of the insurer in order not to endanger the insurance coverage.
§ 31 VVG “Information obligation of the policyholder.”(1) After the occurrence of the insured event, the insurer may request that the policyholder provide any information required to ascertain the insured event or the extent of the insurer’s obligation to pay. The insurer may demand evidence in so far as its procurement can reasonably be expected of the policyholder. “
Section 28 (4) VVG (Insurance Contract Act) If the information or disclosure obligations to have complied within the event of an insurance claim are violated, you risk losing your insurance cover.
Tip 9: Stay with the truth
If the policyholder violates the truth obligation, the insurer may also be wholly or partially indemnified.
Tip 10: Listen to the water police
And here is a recommendation from the water police:
- Inform your jail neighbor if you are not on board for a more extended period.
- Ask strangers on the dock if they can help you.
- Register abnormalities such as license plates and inform your water police immediately.
Remember the successful initiative of the police “Beware alert neighbor” for theft and burglary prevention.
“It’s not just the others who can become the victims of crime.”