Fuel shortage: If I run out of fuel, will my insurance cover my towing?

Normally marginal, this situation may no longer be the case if the lack of fuel at the stations continues for a longer period of time. But before you request a convenience store, call your insurance company… or read your contract carefully.

Running out of fuel, can I call my car insurance company’s assistance service and get the cost of my towing covered? The question is normal enough “anecdotal”states an insurance company. “We had a few repair requests, not really more than usual. We expected a lot more”, we say on the page of the towing company Fluvia, in Montpellier. In these times of scarcity, however, the phenomenon can take on an unusual scale when you have to drive from one station to another with a low tank in search of a hypothetical full tank. But can we get out of such an accident without cost?

Support contract options

“At one point it was an exclusion”, slips François-Régis Boyron, Allianz general agent in Clermont-l’Hérault. The answer is now more nuanced, depending on your contract. “Supported by Mondial assistance, ours takes care of these situationsstates Héraultais, the same for an electric vehicle with empty batteries. But this coverage can vary depending on the formula.

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In Hérault, these motorists were stranded at the pump: “I understand the strike, but it’s difficult, I’ve got the balls”

As a result of purchasing the vehicle many years ago, some old contracts expressly exclude running out of gas. Others only include breakdown assistance, which excludes breakdowns. Or make the coverage of towing a disabled vehicle (notwithstanding the latter) conditional on the distance from the residence where the vehicle is located; 25 and 50 km are “mileage allowance” quite common. In any case, look at the clauses in his contract, “these are contractual elements. Price differences between insurance companies depend on the options”recalls François-Régis Boyron.

Call the insurance company before the grocery store

To be precise, it is not necessarily necessary to be insured against all risks to benefit from it. Many insurance companies offer assistance from certain variants of the basic contract, known as “third party”.

However, the systematic thing is the duty to call the insurance company before the repairer, otherwise there will be no possibility of coverage. Your vehicle can be towed and driven to a garage of your choice and yourself to your home; or a taxi can be ordered to take you to a gas station before returning to your car.

Remains an unknown when a shortage generated by a social movement, the current situation. In 2016, during a similar move, the online broker Meilleurtaux.com indicated that “some policies cover extraordinary causes that the insurance company refuses to deal with” for vehicles that have run out of fuel. Contacted, the French insurance association, France Assureurs, could not confirm.

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