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Hurricane aftermath: Flood-damaged U.S. cars not allowed in Manitoba, says MPI

But not all water-damaged vehicles are "branded" as flood-damaged. Here's how you can double-check.

A car sits abandoned in storm surge along North Fort Lauderdale Beach Boulevard as Hurricane Irma hits the southern part of the state September 10, 2017 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images North America

A car sits abandoned in storm surge along North Fort Lauderdale Beach Boulevard as Hurricane Irma hits the southern part of the state September 10, 2017 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Car buyers eyeing used vehicles in the U.S. should carefully check for flood damage, warns Manitoba Public Insurance.

In a press release issued Wednesday, MPI says more than one million vehicles in the U.S. were flooded or heavily damaged from hurricanes Harvey and Irma last summer.

Water-damaged vehicles can potentially be dangerous, causing corrosion and glitches in important safety features like air bags, according to the release. Flood-damaged vehicles may be denied registration in Manitoba.

“It’s always important for consumers to do their homework prior to making a used vehicle purchase, but this is particularly the case when buying vehicles that may have been damaged in flooding that ravaged areas of Texas and Florida this past summer,” said Ward Keith, MPI's CAO and vice-president of business development, in the press release.

Buyers can check the history of a U.S. vehicle at carproof.com or flood.carfax.com.

However, not all water-damaged vehicles are "branded" as flood-damaged. MPI suggests conducting a VIN search, as well as:

- Having the vehicle inspected by a trusted and certified automotive technician before purchase

- Checking for damp or musty smells

- Checking for rust in the trunk, glove box and beneath the seats

- Checking under the hood and looking for a water line marked by mud or silt

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