Am I covered if I hit an animal while driving?

Unfortunately, wildlife collisions are pretty common in Australia. For example, in NSW, one in every 41 casualty crashes on a country road involves an animal collision1. Luckily, Bingle Comprehensive Car Insurance can cover your vehicle if it's damaged in a collision with an animal.

Here's what you need to know about animal collisions and your cover, and how you can avoid becoming another one of these stats.

What is and isn't covered by insurance if I hit wildlife

As mentioned above, if you're in a collision with wildlife, such as a roo or wallaby, and you have comprehensive cover, you could be covered as long as the hit wasn't intentional. Same goes for a domestic animal, like a cat or dog. You'll may also be covered for accidental damage to other people's cars and property if you're legally liable, say if you swerve to avoid hitting an animal, and hit another car in the process.

If you have Third Party Car Insurance, on the other hand, you won't be covered for damage to your vehicle if you hit wildlife. That being said, if your car accidentally causes damage to someone else's car or property, your legal liability could be covered.

For more information on what is and isn't covered, read the PDS.

How to make an insurance claim if you hit an animal

You can make a claim online with Bingle 24/7, in just a few simple steps. Don't forget to get the contact details and rego if there was any drivers or witnesses involved, and take snaps of all the damage to support your claim.

Make A Claim

Will I still have to pay an excess if I hit an animal?

Here at Bingle, we usually ask you to pay the excess when you lodge a claim. It's unlikely we'll waive your excess if you hit wildlife.

How to avoid animal collisions

Whether you're driving on a suburban street or the open road, it's important to keep these tips in mind:

  • Remain alert and be aware of your surroundings. If you're tired, pull over (where it's safe to do so) and take a nap.
  • Take extra care if you're driving in regional areas, where the roads may not be as well-maintained or well-lit as urban areas.
  • Pay attention and slow down in areas where you notice animal warning signs or roadkill.
  • Kangaroos usually move in groups. So, if you see one, expect to see others nearby.

If you think you're going to hit an animal

If you think you're going to hit an animal, there are a few things you should do:

  • Honk at the animal. This may scare it away and it will also let other drivers know to be alert.
  • Brake as gently as you can. Doing so will help you to account for the movements of the animal.
  • Look in the direction you want to travel in, rather than at the animal. You may find you're more likely to drive towards the animal if it's in your line of sight.

What to do if you hit an animal

If you hit an animal, try to move it from the road or call the local police hotline if you can't, and make sure the road is free from obstacles that might impact other drivers. You should also:

  • Pull over to the side of the road and put your hazard lights on, as soon as it's safe to do so.
  • If you've hit a wildlife animal and it's alive, stop to check its welfare. If the animal is alive and injured, call a local wildlife rescue organisation or the local police and they'll tell you what to do next.
  • If you're certain the animal has died and it's safe to do so, remove it from the road. Check for baby animals nearby, like a joey in a pouch, and hand them over to a wildlife authority or take it to the nearest vet.
  • If you've hit a domestic animal, you need to contact the owners or the police.

Call your local wildlife rescue organisation