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Four tips on how to limit damage from potholes

Presented by PMA Agency

Winter and spring in Quebec means pothole season and tougher driving conditions. Here are our tips for reducing risks and dealing with potholes.

How to avoid potholes?

Look far ahead when you drive. With peripheral distant vision, you'll be more  able to see potholes coming and adjust your driving to avoid them. And watch out for puddles of water on the road that might actually be deep holes. Above all, drive carefully, especially during thawing and freezing periods, and keep your distance from potential hazards!

Can't avoid the pothole? Although it’s a normal reflex to brake before a pothole, that’s not a good idea. Braking transfers your vehicle weight to the front, which may increase damage. Instead, reduce braking a few metres before the pothole and hold tightly on to the steering wheel so you don't veer off course. 

How to prevent damage to your vehicle?

Your tires protect your vehicle so long as they’re properly inflated. If your tire pressure is too low, driving over a pothole can cause a flat or break a wheel rim. If your tire pressure is too high, your tires will be too hard to absorb a shock. During pothole season, you should therefore check your tire pressure frequently for the right inflation. Preventive maintenance of your suspension can also help limit any damage.

How to check for possible damage?

Driving over a pothole can cause various kinds of damage to the wheel, such as a flat tire, a broken rim or a dislodged hubcap. Not to mention possible damage to your vehicle's steering, suspension or wheel alignment, especially if you were driving fast.

Even if you don't notice any apparent damage after driving over a pothole, watch for signs. If your vehicle is making unusual noises or vibrations, or seems to be ‘pulling’ to one side or the other, it may indicate wheel misalignment due to impact or some other problem. Have your vehicle checked immediately and get any needed repairs done as quickly as possible.

How to cover yourself against pohole damage?

Pothole damage to your vehicle may be covered by your insurance policy, provided you have added the necessary endorsements. If you’re not sure, simply contact your insurance representative to find out. You can also submit a compensation claim to the municipality concerned or the Ministère des Transports du Québec. However, you must act quickly (within 15 days for municipalities). You’ll also have to prove that the authorities concerned were negligent. 

Are you well insured against pothole damage? Contact PMA Agency for a quote on the best Inact Insurance protections for your needs, or any other insurance-related inquiry. 

This website provides general information only. Your insurance policy contract takes precedence at all times.  

PMA Damage Insurance Agency helps you find the right car insurance coverage according to your needs. Don't hesitate to contact them for your car, home or RV insurance needs.

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