(Photo Credit: MalaysiaOn24)
With the recent flash floods devastating the nation, together with Malaysia's history with flood troubles, you may have many questions on what to do if your vehicle gets stuck in floodwater. Here we aim to ease your doubts by providing the right steps to take next.
The flash floods affected 8 states and many territories across Malaysia, displacing more than 30,000 people nationwide. Cars being stuck in chest-deep waters have become a common sight, together with videos of floodwater spurting out of car exhausts as people try to salvage their vehicle.
But what exactly can you do to help yourself in this situation?
Don't Reignite Your Engine
(Photo Credit: CarFromJapan)
The aforementioned videos show the extent of damage the flood has caused to property and they are indeed interesting to watch. However, starting your engine could be one of the worst things you can do if you intend to salvage your vehicle.
Your engine comprises of many vital parts that need specific fluids to run smoothly. Mechanics take great care when changing engine and transmission fluids to avoid the slightest contamination. A flood drastically increases the risk of contamination. Flood water and debris that enters the engine's process can cause severe damage to it, therefore as a precaution, do not start your engine after a flood!
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Call a tow truck to get your vehicle to the workshop where a mechanic can take a look at it. You can check on these fluids for contamination by yourself, for example, checking the colour of your engine oil for any irregularities. However, it would be best to let the professionals give your vehicle a more comprehensive check-up.
Prepare Your Case for Insurance
Evidence is vital in making an insurance claim. Take photos of everything, be it your vehicle getting stuck in the flood, getting out of the flood (with licence plates visible). Note down the time, date and location of the flood and make a police report to further aid your claim efforts.
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It is important to note that flash floods are generally considered to be natural disasters which many standard vehicle insurance policies do not cover. You would usually have to pay more for flood damage to be covered, but it may not be a bad idea considering how often Malaysia experiences flash floods, especially with these disasters becoming increasingly common due to the impending threat of climate change.