No one likes to think about their dream car or dream bike being damaged. But if compelled to imagine how their vehicles might lose lustre, most owners immediately think about an accident while their vehicle is on the road.
What few consider is the place where the vehicle is stored. But storage conditions are critical to maintaining and preserving rare, classic and luxury cars. If you’re not convinced, you should see what a rat can do to a Maserati’s interior.
Because our risk consultants visit many storage locations and garages in which these beautiful vehicles are housed, we see the full range of facilities – from old barns to modern, purpose-built garages or basements. Our job is to conduct a thorough appraisal of the building and identify threats to the car.
Fire is always high on our checklist. Does the building have alarms that link directly to local emergency services? Is there a fire suppression system? If so, is it a sprinkler system that can be partially triggered in just the affected area? And if the emergency services are called, is there a readily available water supply to use?
How the facility’s staff manage flammable materials and fuel is also critically important. For example, fuel vapour can ignite and cause a flash fire. If this occurs, will staff be able to move cars out of danger quickly? If your car is on an underground carousel, are the electric controls fire protected? We also examine the exits to assess how quickly an evacuation can be completed.
Water ingress is another threat we need to assess. This could be a flood or a burst pipe in the roof, which could cause untold damage to a vehicle’s leather seats and exotic wood trim. Thankfully, infrared thermography allows us to scan for signs of water leakage that could threaten vehicles.
So, if you’re considering where to store your dream car, ask yourself some questions about its suitability. Pay particular attention to security, fire and water risk, and how any staff conduct themselves. Is it clean and tidy, or are there oily rags lying around?
We know that thinking about your storage facility is a lot less exciting than thinking about your car, but our specialist risk consultants could save you an awful lot of heartache.