ICBC still processing collision claims from November’s paralyzing Metro Vancouver snowstorm

ICBC is still assessing an influx of collision claims from the province’s first significant snowstorm of the season which paralyzed Metro Vancouver’s afternoon and evening commute.

Since winter hasn’t officially arrived, the damage is likely only a taste of what’s to come.

Click to play video: 'Snow causes mayhem on evening commute'

Snow causes mayhem on evening commute

Kim Gazzola was standing outside her Vancouver home waiting to walk her eight-month old German Shepherd puppy on Nov. 29, when she heard a slip-sliding noise and saw a vehicle hitting its brakes.

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”I was like please don’t hit the car, please don’t hit the car, and then it hits the car,” Gazzola recalled Saturday.

Gazzola’s surveillance cameras captured the driver of a BMW SUV slide into her son’s car, which was pushed about 2.5 metres, before colliding with her father-in-law’s car, which was parked in front of her son’s vehicle.

The impact startled Gazzola’s dog Ryker, and prompted the family to file two ICBC claims.

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Snowfall mayhem delays Metro Vancouver commuters for hours Tuesday evening

“My son’s car’s probably a write-off, my father-in-law’s car’s got some damage.”

Gazzola is not alone.

As of Nov. 30, ICBC had received 3,567 claims relating to crashes on Nov. 29, a 94 per cent increase from the 1,837 claims reported on the Tuesday of the week prior.

Unlike the previous system where an at-fault driver’s insurance would be responsible in the event of a crash, ICBC said every driver’s insurance responds under no-fault – but determining liability can get complicated when there’s a chain reaction and a number of vehicles involved.

Click to play video: '‘I was stuck in my car (for) more than 8.5 hours’: Snowstorm screeches Metro Vancouver to a halt'

‘I was stuck in my car (for) more than 8.5 hours’: Snowstorm screeches Metro Vancouver to a halt

Under one scenario, ICBC media relations advisor Greg Harper said if you slid into a vehicle, “you would be 100 per cent at fault and if someone from behind you, a driver slid into the back of your vehicle, they would be 100 per cent at fault likely in that collision.”

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ICBC said driving without winter tires could also cost you – if you end up causing a collision.

“Not having the proper tires could impact your liability absolutely,” Harper told Global News. “And in turn, that could impact your premiums moving forward.”

Read more:

Snow surprise: ICBC reports surge in claims associated with Tuesday’s winter storm

Gazzola’s son and father-in-law are driving rental vehicles as their claims are processed. Although the other driver will likely be found 100 per cent at fault, both will be on the hook for the deductible as their coverage kicks in to cover repairs.

Gazzola is urging drivers to take their time and be equipped with snow tires before the next blast of winter hits.

“The side streets are really slippery, and you just have to go really slow.”

&copy 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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